First published in The Times, Tuesday January 17 2017
The title is perhaps most familiar to international audiences from Peter Weir’s acclaimed 1975 film adaptation. For this stage version, Tom Wright, the playwright, has returned for inspiration to Joan Lindsay’s source novel, about a trio of Australian schoolgirls who, along with their elderly teacher, vanish without trace while on a Valentine’s Day outing in 1900. The production, from Melbourne’s Malthouse Theatre and Black Swan State Theatre Company, directed by Matthew Lutton, is flawed, at times overwrought, but at its best it provokes the same shiver of disquiet as Weir’s woozily frightening movie.
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