20 Feb - 3 March 2017, Carriageworks
One man comes to culture, as another one drifts away. Cuz tells the story of the relationship between two extraordinary Aboriginal men, fair skinned Keithy Cobbo and his dark skinned cousin Bobby Bird.
From their early childhood years growing up on the mighty Condamine River in Queensland to foster care to juvenile detention to homelessness and finally the Housing Commission flats in Redfern years later, Keithy and Bobby travel a rough road sharing an unbreakable bond, a deep inextricable connection to culture, family and each other, that sees them face life’s challenges with humour, resilience and the knowledge that their love and respect for each other will never die.
Cuz explores what it is like for First Peoples of Australia who struggle to be identified due to the colour of their skin. As McPherson says, Cuz is a play “about identity and being proud – not giving up hope as an Aboriginal, and believing in yourself regardless of the struggles we encounter everyday in our lives.”
Director - Frederick Copperwaite
Playwright - Billy McPherson
Dramaturge - Peter Matheson
Cast - Bjorn Stewart, Colin Kinchela, Sharni McDermott
Producer - Lily Shearer
Produced by Moogahlin Performing Arts. Presented as part of the Carriageworks 2017 In Development Program. Supported by the Australian government through the Ministry for the Arts’ Catalyst – Australian Arts and Culture Fund.
Cuz was first developed at the inaugural Yellamundie National Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Playwriting Festival, presented by Moogahlin Performing Arts in 2013, and received further development from Moogahlin in 2016. It was presented as a work in progress reading at the Matariki Development Festival in Wellington Aotearoa, by Tawata Productions in June 2016, and at the Weesageechak Begins to Dance Festival in Toronto Canada, by Native Earth Performing Arts, in November 2016.