Full cast announced for OUR COUNTRY’S GOOD at South Pasadena Theater Workshop

The South Pasadena Theater Workshop has announced the cast of a new production of Timberlake Wertenbakeraward-winning black comedy, Our Country’s Good. Set in newly colonized Australia at the end of the 18th century, the production will run from May 26 to June 26. SPTW Artistic Director and Co-Founder Sally Godwin Smythe will lead the cast of twelve.

The cast includes: Pat Town as Governor Phillip/Robert Sideway, Robert Cesario as Captain david collins/Meg Long, Kila Package as Captain Watkin Tench/John Wisehammer, Tavis Baker as Major Robbie Ross/John Arscott, Patrick Brooker as Harry Brewer/Captain Campbell, Sam Cass as Ralph Clark, Esdras Toussaint as Black Cesar/Aborigine, Schuyler Mastain as Ketch Freeman, Grace Hawthorn as Mary Brenham/William Faddy, Daisy Donohue as Dabby Bryant/George Johnston, Michaela Ivey as Liz Morden/Reverend Johnson and Danny Brown as Duckling Smith/Will Dawes.

Based on Thomas Keneally“The Playmaker’s” historical novel Our Country’s Good tells the true story of Australia’s first theatrical performance in 1789. The new penal colony of New South Wales in present-day Sydney was populated by the British Royal Navy, Marines, convicted petty thieves, prostitutes and murderers. A Royal Marine Lieutenant launches a ragtag group of convicts to perform a catering comedy for King George III’s birthday celebration. In order to defend his output to British officers and criminals, he must convince them that “life is more than crime and punishment”. The play was staged against a backdrop of food shortages and barbaric prison sentences. Yet, as the barrier between the kidnappers and the captives crumbles, they begin to discover each other both on stage and behind the scenes.

Our Country’s Good grapples with important themes in a colonial world: a penal system that allows the corrupt to abuse their power; a bombastic but heartfelt discussion of how society should treat prisoners; the subjugation and abuse of women; forbidden love; and the effects of PTSD on soldiers.

Winner of the BBC Award: West End Play of the Year, the Laurence Olivier Award, the London Evening Standard Award and the New York Drama Critics Award, Our Country’s Good is described as “a tribute to the transformative power of theatre… It is heartwarming to find someone who champions the unique spiritual power of theatre” ( The Guardian).

The production set is designed by Clay Wilcox, with lighting by Leigh Allencostume design by Lena Sands, and sound design by Nick Foran. Prop master is Rachel Ross-Sullivan, dialect coach Deborah Ross-Sullivan and stage manager is Kellie Hageman. The South Pasadena Theater Workshop is located at 1507 El Centro Street, South Pasadena, CA 91030. Performances are May 26 through June 26. Thursday and Friday at 8 p.m. Saturday and Sunday at 5 p.m. Ticket information can be found on their website: www.SouthPasadenaTheatreWorkshop.com.

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