Image: Black Inc.
2020: commissioned by Malthouse Theatre
Writer Michele Lee
Dramaturgs Mark Pritchard and Ra Chapman
Director Bridget Balodis
Full-length play, stage
A stage adaptation of the 2016 novel, The Healing Party, by Micheline Lee.
Estranged from her family, Natasha is making a life for herself in Darwin when her sister calls with bad news. Their mother is ill, and has only a few months to live. Confused and conflicted, Natasha returns to the home she fled many years before. But her father, an evangelical Christian, has not changed –he is still the domineering yet magnetic man she ran from, and her sisters and mother are still in his thrall.
One night her father makes an astonishing announcement: he has received a message from God that his wife is to be healed, and they must hold a party to celebrate. As Natasha and her sisters prepare for the big event – and the miracle – she struggles to reconcile her family’s faith with her sense that they are pretending. Is she a traitor or the only one who can see the truth? And what use is truth anyway, in the face of death?
Taut, funny and poignant, The Healing Party is an electrifying debut novel about faith and lies, the spirit and the flesh.
Development: Malthouse Theatre