★★★★★ "An urgent and compelling work: one that should be as widely seen for its craft, just as much as its subject matter should be better understood... Run, don’t walk."
Winner of the 2018 Griffin Award, Prima Facie is an indictment of the Australian legal system’s failure to provide reliable pathways to justice for women in rape, sexual assault or harassment cases. It’s a work of fiction, but one that could have been ripped from the headlines of any paper, any day of the week, so common you could cry.
Sheridan Harbridge stars as Tessa—a criminal lawyer at the top of her game who knows the law permits no room for emotion.
To win, you just need to believe in the rules. And Tessa loves to win, even when defending clients accused of sexual assault. Her court-ordained duty trumps her feminism. But when she finds herself on the other side of the bar, Tessa is forced into the shadows of doubt she’s so ruthlessly cast over other women.
Turning Sydney’s courts of law into a different kind of stage, Suzie Miller’s (Sunset Strip, Caress/Ache) taut, rapid-fire and gripping one-woman show exposes the shortcomings of a patriarchal justice system where it’s her word against his.
Maybe we need a new system.
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Image credit: Brett Boardman
POST-SHOW Q&A: 7 SEPTEMBER
Following the 6:30pm performance on Monday 7 September, join playwright Suzie Miller, Rita Shackel (Professor of Law and Ethics at Sydney University) and Andrew Dyer (Deputy Director, Sydney Institute of Criminology) to discuss the topical legal and ethical issues raised in Prima Facie.
Director Lee Lewis
Designer Renée Mulder
Lighting Designer Trent Suidgeest
Composer and Sound Designer Paul Charlier
Stage Manager Khym Scott
Cast Sheridan Harbridge