Are We Awake?

6 Mar

This is part of the New Fitz program; the idea being that the Old Fitz will commission Australian dramatists to write responses to each of their main stage works. Are We Awake? is notionally a response to David Hare’s The Judas Kiss. Having missed opening, I haven’t been able to get along to Hare’s play, and since it’s been 18 years since I’ve seen it, I have little sense of what dialogue might be going on between the two pieces. I doubt it matters.

Are We Awake? by Charles O’Grady is a beautiful stand-alone new work. I congratulate Redline and PlayWriting Australia for making it happen.

It’s the story of two lovers, directed with a powerful simplicity by Sean Hawkins and played magnificently by Daniel Monks and Aleks Mikic. The lovers face a test that is common, though not commonly staged: one of them is disabled and in poor health.


The play is built on the question of What is Love?
Is it sharing or is it caring?
Is love the sharing with a partner of Life’s most joyous moments? Or is it the caring that becomes necessary when your partner faces Life’s challenges? (Or is that just a false dichotomy, the collapse of which heralds the arrival of real love?)

Are We Awake? is a small gem, a tender exploration of some awfully big questions.

Paul Gilchrist


Are We Awake? by Charles O’Grady

At the Old Fitz til 11 March

Tix and info here

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