Alan Seymour’s The One Day of the Year has remained a relevant and powerful piece of theatre since its first controversial performance in 1960 by the Adelaide Theatre Group.
Death threats followed.
The first professional season was in 1961 at the Palace Theatre in Sydney, when similar controversy (and threats) pursued it. It then travelled to London’s Theatre Royal where it was a critical and popular success.
The play received a major revival in London in 2015 with an all-Australian cast lead by Fiona Press, directed by Wayne Harrison. Fiona will be reprising the role of ‘Dot’ in the upcoming Sydney performance.
The play revolves around the Cook family and the tension created when firebrand son Hughie challenges his father Alf on his attitude toward Anzac Day. Hughie and his girlfriend Jan plan to document Anzac Day for the university newspaper, focusing on its traditional binge drinking.
But for the first time in his life, Hughie refuses to attend the dawn service with Alf. When he watches the march on television at home with his mother, he is torn between outrage at the display and love for his father.
Joining Fiona Press in this special reading are Grant Dodwell and Anthony Phelan. They’re joined by Samson Alston, Madeleine Wighton and Samuel Welsh.