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The Trauma Project by Elizabeth Walley
March 17, 2021 @ 7:30 pm - 8:40 pm$45
Monday afternoon, November 2012, and the street is waiting.
Letterboxes empty, children at school, silent cars in driveways.
As I chat to my neighbour on the verge where the road meets the nature strip, I see a bearded man reaching, a blonde woman falling and the flash of a rifle barrel pressed against her temple.
Gun shots as we run.
Bullets and blood on the bitumen.
The Trauma Project is an immersive composition for theatre crafted by Elizabeth Walley in response to her eyewitness experience – for trauma is enfolded in the body, transcending time and place to erupt unbidden, haunting and disabling. It is visceral, physiological, often beyond language. This performance is a shared re-presentation of the psychic chaos.
As she began to write, past memories of assaults filled the page – a compilation of small and more significant violations by men, woven into the fabric of her womanhood. These rememberings have also found expression in The Trauma Project, arriving like postcards from an earlier existence, calling for action.
Engaging the body and her lived experience as a site for interrogating personal and cultural trauma, this poetic non-linear work explores the schism of self, the intrusive memories that characterise such overwhelming experience, perspective, and the politics of gendered violence.
Creative development of The Trauma Project was supported by La Mama Explorations in 2017.