The Lambs and the Pickles at Guildford Grammar School

8 Aug 2014

Guildford Grammar School has produced another outstanding drama production, this time tackling Tim Winton’s nostalgic novel, Cloudstreet.

The novel was adapted by Nick Enright and Justin Mondo, and featured Year 12 students Alistair MacLaughlan, David Ratcliffe, Justin Barwick and Cohen Dix in the lead male roles.  Blackman was played most convincingly by local Indigenous actor, Ian Wilkes. The female were drawn from Perth College.

The play opened for VIPs and families on Thursday 7 August, with two encore performances on Friday 8 August and Saturday 9 August.

The cast of over 30 performers, under the direction of Head of Drama, Ms Jane Diamond, brought this quintessentially Western Australian story to life, with the support of a large back-stage crew of lighting and sound professionals, costume and make-up professionals and set designers.

Cloudstreet is the nostalgic story of two families, the Lambs and the Pickles, who share a house at 1 Cloudstreet, Perth from 1943 – 1963. The story tracks their trials and tribulations as they learn to live, grow and change together over a twenty year period, with each individual wrestling with their own internal weaknesses and trying to make sense of their relationships with others. They are all deeply flawed, but their flaws sit nestled with their vulnerabilities and their genuine attempts at making good, which make them endearing characters, we forgive them, perhaps identifying our own weaknesses.

Both families are confronted by a life changing event which inevitably pushes them together to share the house. The Lambs deal with the drowning of their son Fish, and the Pickles deal with Sam losing his finger and then gambling away a large inheritance but also obtaining the house at Cloudstreet. Sam Pickles erroneous trusts in ‘Lady Luck’ and coupled with his compulsive gambling, loses the money and has to rent out half the house in order to make ends meet. Prior to the loss of the inheritance, he loses his five fingers after catching his hand in a boat winch.

Threading through the story is the Blackman who has a connection with Quick and Fish. He is the symbol of spirituality and our relationship to nature and our souls. The play depicts themes of love, identity, spirituality, fate, belonging, family, and change.
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