OUR MONSTER'S NAME IS JERRY Comes to Theatre Works

Performances run 25 July - 3 August 2024.

By: Jun. 10, 2024
OUR MONSTER'S NAME IS JERRY Comes to Theatre Works
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Dirty Pennies Theatre Project will return this Winter to Theatre Works with a premiere season like no other. A gothic suburban horror presented in partnership with the Geelong Arts Centre and Theatre Works, this new Australian work promises to be a wild ride full of spooks, heart, and slime that takes a closer look at the challenges of having the family your heart desires.

Written by Amy May Nunn (Winner of the 2023 ATYP Prize and the runner up for the 2023 Martin-Lysicrates Prize), this surprising season features an exceptional team of cast and creatives including Green Room Award Winner Lily Fish, Green Room Award Nominee Ursula Searle, and Designer Savanna Wegman and Lighting Designer Giovanna Yate Gonzalez - who are both current participants of the Melbourne Theatre Company’s Future Creatives Initiative.

Running for nine shows only, Our Monster’s Name is Jerry is the tale of young couple Lou and Maud, who are broke after yet another unsuccessful round of IVF. Life takes a surprising upturn, though, when they inherit a house from an estranged relative, but as they strive to assimilate into their pristine new neighbourhood things go horribly awry because of the monster they have living inside their home. A monster named Jerry.

“I’m at an age where making choices about whether or not to have kids is just kind of in the air”, explains Writer Amy May Nunn. 

“Suddenly there’s a big ticking clock and if you’re queer, disabled, not partnered, or simply not in a partnership that allows you to have a baby on your own, there are big questions around how you will practically set about creating that family. Questions which have a huge emotional and financial impact. Consciously choosing to have a child is an inherently optimistic act, and yet there’s so much to be afraid of. I find the tension between those two things really fascinating. 

What’s beautiful about this work, and the horror genre, is that it explores the fears we face every day through these strange and terrifying metaphors. It takes our fears and amplifies them into something larger than life, but underneath those layers it’s painfully human. Being someone who loves heightened worlds and escapism, horror and fantasy were really formative genres for me when I was growing up. I think references like Edward Scissor Hands and 80’s horrors like Poltergeist, IT and The Shining are really baked into the landscape of the play. We don’t often see horror on stage. This work explores it in a really theatrical and poetic way.”

A fantastical genre-warping work that explores the terror of planning for the future in an increasingly frightening world, Our Monster’s Name is Jerry marries physical theatre, puppetry, and a vibrant text to spotlight the monsters we wrestle with, and the lengths we’ll go to keep them at bay. Premiering this July, Our Monster’s Name is Jerry is an exciting addition to the 2024 ‘With Theatre Works’ season, not to be missed.

Launched in 2017, Dirty Pennies Theatre Project is a Naarm/Melbourne-based company dedicated to the fostering and development of new work with a particular focus on women, non-binary and queer voices, accessibility, and daring. Previous works include Legends or (The God Killers) (2023), Lemon Tree on Dreg Street (2023), Pramkicker (2019, 2021), They Will Know Us By Trails of Light (2021), and Rise Again (2020 - 2021).

One of Australia’s longest-running independent theatres, Theatre Works is constantly reinvigorating and reimagining the sector by providing a hotbed for artist and audience development. They fill a vital niche in the Australian cultural landscape as a prominent destination for artists to collaborate and create, actively highlighted by the 12 productions playing as a part of the 2024 ‘With Theatre Works’ programming stream.


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