18.8 C
Byron Shire
June 6, 2023

Interview: Tim Winton-Brown

Latest News

Keep the homeless in Tweed warm

It’s no secret that the Far North Coast has some of the highest homelessness figures in the country and...

Other News

Private partnership sought for bioenergy facility proposal

Byron Council have been forced to explore the possibility of a public private partnership to fund its planned  bioenergy facility in Byron Bay.

Keep the homeless in Tweed warm

It’s no secret that the Far North Coast has some of the highest homelessness figures in the country and...

Confiscate bikes

Two weeks ago I had to wait in Mooball, by the rail trail crossing of the Pottsville Road. During...

Labor forever

Mr Duncan, judging from your last rant, would you be a rusted-on Labor supporter? Sorry for pointing out the...

Priorities? Compliance

Despite a ‘tough budget environment’, where Council can’t find $15,000 per annum to maintain a tree planting initiative on land it manages, there will be $250,000 spent on employing two more compliance officers and purchasing another ‘enforcement’ vehicle.

Biblical misogyny

In the time of Jesus as per the accounts in the Bible, all women were lowly handmaidens, they were,...

Niall, Captain David-Ross, Douglas In The Last Witch

Rochdale Theatre, Lismore  | Kohinur Hall, Main Arm | 21 June – 14 July | $20-25 

A Fire is Coming

Out of the depths of magical Scottish lore comes the story of Janet Horne, the last woman to be accused of witchcraft and consorting with the Devil in the UK in 1727.

The Last Witch, written by Rona Munro for the 2009 Edinburgh Festival, sees a darkness born out of the grinding poverty of the lives of the 18th century Scottish highlands, in Dornoch, and in the vengeful hearts of men struggling with the free spirit of an independent woman who is not afraid of them.

Eventually their haphazard attempts at controlling her unconventional ways result in downfall as the men rule the Law, but the real power resides in the emotional lives, friendships, and the sensuality of the village women.

Munro’s play confidently toys with uncertainty and skips along the line between fantasy and reality with playful ease, examining an old world of darkly ancient beliefs and an emerging new one where a different kind of knowledge flourishes.

Based on the true story of Janet Horne, the production reveals the strength of women living in a brutal and unforgiving time.

Produced and directed by Tim Winton-Brown, played by a talented and experienced ensemble cast and supported by a sensational design and technical team, the production explores the story of a woman unafraid to challenge the patriarchal status quo. We spoke to Tim to find out how 18th-century Scotland finds its way to the northern rivers.

What is it about about Janet Horne’s story that sang to you?

I’ve long had an interest in the subject matter and the poetic lyricism of the language – and that narrative of a strong, defiant woman’s journey.

How do you feel the attitude toward women has changed in this since since the 1800s; do you think there is still enough residue of that attitude from society – wanting women to behave – that makes this story speak to 21st-century women?

Yes. Although society has made tremendous leaps forward, I feel that the feminist struggle continues to this day, in everything from pay equity, to representation in politics at every level of government, to parity of big business CEOs and board composition. Powerful women, and women in positions of power, continue to be either underrepresented or treated worse and paid less than men. The face of sexism and misogyny may have changed, but I think it is still powerfully prevalent in our society. However, things are changing, and will continue to change.

Was it difficult to ‘feel’ the plight of Jane Horne when directing the players?

Yep. There’s has never been a witch burning ever recorded in Australian Law, so it’s difficult for me to be able to truly identify with Ms Horne’s situation, both as an Australian, and as a man. And, as a director, I find myself at times deferring to the actors’ experience and I’m grateful for the collaborative, ensemble approach embraced by the cast.

What has a 200-year-old story got to entice a 2018 audience?

An amazing story, a powerful script, and a universal theme of the struggle against oppression and abuse of power that echoes through the centuries to this very day.

The production opens on the winter solstice, 21 June, at the Rochdale Theatre in Lismore for four performances before moving to Kohinur Hall in Main Arm for three weeks, closing on July 14.

Tickets available through the Main Arm General Store, The Mullumbimby Bookshop, and Music Bizarre in Lismore, or search The Last Witch online at trybooking.com

Support The Echo

Keeping the community together and the community voice loud and clear is what The Echo is about. More than ever we need your help to keep this voice alive and thriving in the community.

Like all businesses we are struggling to keep food on the table of all our local and hard working journalists, artists, sales, delivery and drudges who keep the news coming out to you both in the newspaper and online. If you can spare a few dollars a week – or maybe more – we would appreciate all the support you are able to give to keep the voice of independent, local journalism alive.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

At last! The 2023 Lismore Eisteddfod

Finally, after an absence of three years, we are back on our feet. Covid and the 2022 Lismore flood couldn’t keep a good eisteddfod...

Global Village and Little Splendour

With the countdown to Splendour in the Grass well and truly on, the festival is thrilled to reveal the lineups for Global Village and...

¡Viva la fiesta!

The HSBC Spanish Film Festival presented by Palace, an annual celebration of film and culture from Spain and Latin America, will screen at Palace...

Classic storytelling from Tim

Tim Freedman has been developing an alt-country outfit since 2021 – The Whitlams Black Stump Band – which features some of Australia’s finest roots...