Jonathan Dunk

Jonathan Dunk

Jonathan Dunk is the co-editor of Overland, and the recipient of the A.D. Hope Prize and the Dal Stivens Award.

Jonathan Dunk reviews 'Patrick White’s Theatre: Australian modernism on stage, 1960–2018' by Denise Varney

January–February 2022, no. 439 26 November 2021
Jonathan Dunk reviews 'Patrick White’s Theatre: Australian modernism on stage, 1960–2018' by Denise Varney
Patrick White’s plays are conventionally assigned a marginal place in the landscape of his writing. Historically, they have either been regarded as poetic but unconvincing extensions of the performative dimensions of his prose, or as fundamentally misconceived exercises in contempt. Tim Winton spoke for the latter camp when, writing in the London Review of Books (22 June 1995), he dismissed Whit ... (read more)

Beware of Pity (Sydney Festival)

ABR Arts 29 January 2019
Beware of Pity (Sydney Festival)
Beware of Pity, the touring co-production of Complicité and Schaubühne, offers a dazzling vision of ethical crisis. Director Simon McBurney’s adaptation of Stefan Zweig’s 1939 novel (Ungeduld des Herzens) compellingly explores the social implications and consequences of individual sentiments without lapsing into heavy-handed allegory. The play begins in London on the cusp of World War II, b ... (read more)

Kill the PM

ABR Arts 23 October 2014
Four white students and a gun wait in a room overlooking the street through which the prime minister will pass. Kill the PM, liberally adapted from Fyodor Dostoevsky’s Demons (1872) by Fregmonto Stokes, and directed by James Dalton for Unhappen, is terse and arresting theatre. The Old 505 Theatre is one of the handful of venues in Sydney genuinely amenable to independent theatre. The place has ... (read more)

Macbeth | Sydney Theatre Company

September 2014, no. 364 01 September 2014
Of Shakespeare’s tragedies, Macbeth seems the most prescient, apposite to a species rapidly running out of world. Upon hearing of the Witches’ prophecy, and resolving her course with chilling alacrity, Lady Macbeth invokes the nether realm of her potentialities: Come, you spirits That tend on mortal thoughts, unsex me here, And fill me, from the crown to the toe, top-full Of direst cruelty. ... (read more)

Strictly Ballroom

May 2014, no. 361 17 April 2014
When culture worships youth, what does an ageing artist make of his myth? Most viewers of Strictly Ballroom: The Musical will enjoy themselves to a certain extent and for a certain duration. While my own misgivings were frequent, the large audience received the show warmly and rose, albeit half-heartedly, at the curtain call. The show rests on the shapely spray-tanned shoulders of a large and sca ... (read more)