The Secret River
A deeply moving and unflinching journey into Australia’s dark history. Adapted from Kate Grenville’s acclaimed novel, this multi-award-winning production from Sydney Theatre Company tells the story of two families divided by culture and land.
William Thornhill arrives in New South Wales a convict from the slums of London. Upon earning his pardon he discovers that this new world offers something he didn’t dare dream of: a place to call his own. But as he plants a crop and lays claim to the soil on the banks of the Hawkesbury River, he finds that this land is not his to take. Its ancient custodians are the Dharug people.
It was with great sadness that we acknowledged the passing of actor Ningali Lawford-Wolf from the company of The Secret River. Ningali’s family gave their blessing for the London season to proceed.
Neil Armfield directed a large ensemble cast, with live music by composer Iain Grandage. This hauntingly poetic production was conceived in collaboration with Aboriginal artists and is performed in Dharug as well as English.
Please note: This production contains strong language, scenes of violence and descriptions of sexual violence.
Image from the Australian production © Tom Huntley, used with permission from the family of Ningali Lawford-Wolf.
Talks and events
Director Neil Armfield on The Secret River Wed 28 Aug, 5.45pm
Contemporary Responses to Indigenous History Thu 29 Aug, 5.15pm
The Secret River 2019 tour is supported by Ian Narev & Frances Allan, Gretel Packer and commissioning patrons Catriona Mordant AM & Simon Mordant AM and David Gonski AC & Orli Wargon OAM.
This project has been assisted by the Australian Government’s Major Festivals Initiative, managed by the Australia Council its arts funding and advisory body, in association with the Confederation of Australian International Arts Festivals Inc., Sydney Festival, Perth International Arts Festival and The Centenary of Canberra