The Charcoal Club (Burning Embers)

For burnt-out blacks and singed whites

“I have a passionate and fervent belief in Australia as a country because I believe if non-indigenous Australia knew the truth they’d be marching in the streets with us and they’d claim the issue as their own…”

RICHARD J FRANKLAND

 To have a voice is as much an artistic concern, as it is a political one. In the life and work of Richard J Frankland, the artistic and the political are indivisible. It is no wonder then that Frankland’s new political party, and Australia’s first Indigenous party, happens to be called Your Voice.

Richard J Frankland is the true Renaissance man. A celebrated raconteur, singer, performer, theatre and film-maker, Indigenous activist and humanist, Frankland offers audiences a unique insight into the current state of relations between Indigenous and white Australia. Frankland’s riveting ‘Conversations with the Dead’, born of his work for the Commission into Black Deaths in Custody, excited standing ovations for Belvoir St Theatre and Playbox in 2002 and 2003.

With humour and insight, Richard J Frankland looks at Germaine Greer’s recent controversial assertion that the only way Australia can achieve true nationhood is by becoming an Indigenous republic.

Through his own life-stories, experiences, songs and anecdotes, and featuring live and video interviews with some of Australia’s and the world’s most prominent and outspoken advocates for Indigenous rights, The Charcoal Club challenges us all to embrace a bold and proud new vision for our future.

“…fascinating… powerful… hard hitting”

THE AUSTRALIAN

“extraordinarily moving… The Charcoal Club received a raucous standing ovation… This show has been the highlight of the 2004 Melbourne Festival… 5 stars”

VIBE

“[The Charcoal Club] is a powerful polemic, a protest, a personal narrative, a cabaret, a social document, a variety show and a case for the prosecution…”

THE AGE

Chamber Made opera is renowned for its genre-defying new works, and The Charcoal Club is no exception. Through his own life-stories, experiences, songs and anecdotes, featuring live and video interviews with prominent and outspoken advocates for Indigenous rights, Richard Frankland challenges us to embrace a bold and proud new vision for our country’s future.

BEAT MAGAZINE

“…under Douglas Horton’s deft direction and sympathetic nuance, the material is never didactic … an important contribution by Chamber Made Opera…

HERALD SUN

“Don’t miss Richard Frankland’s haunting and courageous Charcoal Club…

SATURDAY HERALD SUN

2005:  The Dreaming Festival (11 – 13 June)
2004: Melbourne International Festival for the Arts