Big boost for refugee tale tellers

THE Baulkham Hills African Ladies Troupe and Riverside Theatres have welcomed a funding boost for a new centre stage production.

The Troupe received $35,000 from the Australia Council for the Arts, $60,000 from Arts NSW and $10,000 from Amnesty International Australia.

The production presents personal stories by four African refugee women as they seek to move on and create new lives in Australia.

Producer at Racing Pulse Productions Michelle Kotevski has been working with the Troupe.

She said without the funding the show would never have come together.

‘‘We would never be able to afford a professional cast and team which we needed to fund the project,’’ Ms Kotevski said.

The Troupe is led by Ros Horin, an experienced professional theatre director and writer.

Ms Kotevski said the project was inspired by Ms Horin’s interest in human rights.

‘‘Ros was inspired by a speech on human rights by Hilary Clinton,’’ she said.

‘‘She then went out and spoke to UNHCR [UN refugee agency] and Amnesty International about finding people for the project.

“There will not be a single woman out there who will not laugh along to these women or find a connection with them,’’ she said.

‘‘I think every woman will relate to the joys, bad hair days, the resilience and humanity the Troupe present.’’

The production premieres at Riverside Theatres in May and at the Belvoir Street Theatre in August.

Riverside Theatres producer Camilla Rountree said the production was most welcome.

‘‘It’s up in the multicultural area and reflects the cultural diversity of western Sydney,’’ Ms Rountree said.

‘‘We really hope that people from Parramatta and all over see the joyous show.’’

Details: riversideparramatta.com.au

The story Big boost for refugee tale tellers first appeared on Blacktown Sun.

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