Auspicious Arts Projects Inc. - Jean Tong

Opera, Music Theatre & Cabaret

ROMEO IS NOT THE ONLY FRUIT

ROMEO IS NOT THE ONLY FRUIT is the satirical lesbian pop musical Australia doesn’t know it wants, but is the one it needs.

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Featuring an original score, ROMEO IS NOT THE ONLY FRUIT stars a Chorus of Incompetent Dead Lesbians trying to stop Juliet and Darcy from becoming their new favourite, dead, girl-on-girl romance.

Brilliantly backed by a genre-bending pop composition (Sailor Take Warning) and set to Jean Tong’s sharp, witty lyrics (Melbourne Theatre Company, Union House Theatre),

ROMEO IS NOT THE ONLY FRUIT is an urgent disruption of mainstream media’s inadequate representation of queer women. Drawing from a rich tapestry of intertextual references, ROMEO IS NOT THE ONLY FRUIT dissects queer and straight rom-com tropes while an Incompetent Dead Lesbian Chorus try to stop the women from falling in love and succumbing to their inevitably tragic end.

The punchy 75-minute musical will be presented in full at much-loved, iconic Melbourne venue, The Butterfly Club. The season runs 14-26 November 2017, joining four other incredible new works presented by Poppy Seed Festival 2017.

Within an increasingly intolerant social context, ROMEO IS NOT THE ONLY FRUIT aims to provide a diverse, queer audience with the space to dance their revolution into being. Our opening night coincides with the infamous, unreasonable ABS Marriage Equality Survey results being released; we intend to be here for our community of queers, allies, lovers, and family, to come together and celebrate queerness, women, and people of colour, both on-and-offstage.

ROMEO IS NOT THE ONLY FRUIT centres the voices of young, queer, people of colour in the cast and crew. It’s 2017 and it shouldn’t be new or rare, but it is – we are proud to present a diverse all-female cast and a creative team made up of people of colour. We pull together emerging artists from a range of diverse backgrounds in order to facilitate a clever, relevant, and groundbreaking new show that seeks to tear down stereotypes, enthuse audiences, and carve out a new canon.

We’re a group of young artists pouring our love and time (lots of time) into this ambitious, original indie musical. We believe in its riotous humour’s ability to provoke deep belly laughs and even deeper reflections. We’re also a group of young artists bearing all the technical, production, and logistical costs associated with putting on an ambitious, original indie musical. With five cast members, eight creatives, and three mentors, achieving our fundraising goal will assist us in remunerating our team and ensures that work like ours can continue being produced sustainably and at a high level.

If you have any questions or would like more information, please contact us on jeanette.tong@gmail.com. You can also keep up with the project at www.facebook.com/romeoisnottheonlyfruit.

Thank you,

Jean Tong, Stephanie Liew, and the Romeo team

This project is produced by Poppy Seed Theatre Festival and presented by The Butterfly Club.

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Jean Tong is a writer and director creating politically irreverent works about the untidiness of cultural identification, structural inequality, and Otherness.

Her work – tonally best described as ‘wry outrage’ – makes explosive statements using dark humour and vivid imagery that tends to burrow under the skins of audiences long after they leave the theatre. She is informed by her border-straddling, imaginary citizenship, and can never stop seeing the in-betweens, which she finds fascinating. She is interested in the elusivity and elasticity of language(s).

Her recent works include ‘hungry ghosts’ for Melbourne Theatre Company (2018) & MTC Cybec Electric (2017), ‘macdeath: a coda’ for Union House Theatre (2016), and ‘TERRORISM’ (2016), which received the UHT Best New Writing Award. She has also presented at the Emerging Writers’ Festival and published in Peril Magazine. She is currently completing a Master in Writing for Performance at the Victorian College of the Arts.

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