A play about refugees in 5 dubious acts

La Mama Faraday Street, Carlton February 4 – 15, 2015

Wed 6:00 pm; Thurs – Sat 7:30 pm; Sun 4:00 pm

running time: 80 minutes


About the process

Franz Kafka’s started his second novel, Der Process, in 1914, but it was left incomplete at his death in 1924, although he had written the final chapter. It was published posthumously in 1925 and is best known in the English-speaking world as The Trial. It has been observed that the plight of our refugees is similar to that of “K” in Kafka’s novel.

In this new tragi-comedy by Ian Robinson, a refugee arrives in Australia by boat and is interviewed by an Immigration Officer and then a Lawyer, who both give him little hope for his future. Meanwhile, Immigration Ministers from the successive Labor and Liberal governments try to justify their draconian refugee policies. After many months in detention, the desperation of his situation has a catastrophic effect on the refugee.

Artistic Concept

The play is a political satire which exposes the inhumanity and hypocrisy of current and previous government policies toward refugees by uncovering their underlying inconsistencies and cold-heartedness. Its inspiration goes back to Aristophanes, to the plays of Henry Fielding (which were so devastatingly effective that censorship was introduced in English theatre just to shut them down), to the novels of Franz Kafka,  and more recently in Australia to the work of Clark and Dawes and the Chaser group.

The play has five scenes, called “Acts”, each of which touches on a different genre of theatre: Act One: Comedy; Act Two: Farce; Act Three: Tragicomedy; Act Four: Burlesque; Act Five: Tragedy.

Radio interview with Annie McLoughlin from the Solidarity Breakfast show of 3cr  www.solidaritybreakfast.org.au

Cast and team



asylum seeker: Ezekeil Day

immigration processor and ministers: sean scully

immigration lawyer and PSYCHIATRIST: jessica muschamp

stage manager and Lighting: sarah mckenzie

assistant stage manager and sound operator: Madhulika Basu

photography: Ben Davidson

producer: Cherian Jacob