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EMPIRE in Enmore

For the music lover and theatre enthusiast alike, the Kinetic Energy Theatre Company’s coming season of EMPIRE offers an engaging night out.

Hot off the creative drawing board, this latest and updated generation of our acclaimed play will hit the stage when Bradley Manning’s court martial will be in full swing: July 10-13 (at St Luke’s Hall in Enmore).

The Sydney Peace Foundation supports this gritty doco-drama written and created by Kinetic Energy Theatre Company’s co-directors Graham Jones & Jepke Goudsmit, and performed by their twelve member troupe of actors and musicians: Drew Bourgeois, Frank Dasent, Angela Fieldhouse, Jepke Goudsmit, Robert Gray, Jola Jones, Graham Jones, Saha Jones, Lilli Pearse, Floyd Robinson, Roberto Quintarelli, Billy Ward.

Empire tackles the questions arising from the leak of the Collateral Murder video and hundreds of thousands of secret US State Department cables by whistle-blower Bradley Manning to WikiLeaks. The play draws an arch right from the birth of the “Idea of America” to the US Empire’s present day excesses.

To address these issues Kinetic Energy have gone to two of the most eminent and elegant critics of the Empire – the writer activists Arundhati Roy and Noam Chomsky. Two of Roy’s recent political essays are the starting point: “The Loneliness of Noam Chomsky”, and: “Confronting Empire”. Kinetic Energy adapted these essays for the stage and have laced them with Chomsky’s commentaries on the subject of Empire. Using contemporary documentary film technique, we have woven dramatic reenactment together with narration, video & audio footage, and live music.

The play demonstrates the company’s unique style once described by Richard Glover in the SMH as: “Different to anything you’ll see elsewhere.” And by Paul McGillick in the Australian Financial Review as: ”Work with the kind of conviction and focus which fists you right between the eyes.”

We live in an Orwellian world. And yet, despite the most heinous crimes against nature and humanity, hope that another world is possible springs eternal. Alternatives are being created, and all around the globe people are uniting in their demand for justice and peace.

Kinetic Energy take the audience on a trip across American history. From early colonists like the Puritans in Massachusetts Bay (later Boston), and the preachings of founding father John Winthrop, to the post World War II period and the establishment of the US hegemony.

This timeline is punctuated by scenes on the golf course, where president George W. Bush makes some of his most famous statements on foreign policy, revealing the debt he owes to his Texan religious upbringing and American mythology like the Battle of the Alamo.

A third timeline follows the internet conversations between Bradley Manning from his work station in Baghdad, and ex-hacker Adrian Lamo. Kinetic Energy reproduce an edited version live on stage, based on the logs of these talks. Ultimately, these chats led to Lamo turning Manning in to the US military.

While Bradley Manning’s court martial is in full swing, WikiLeaks co-founder Julian Assange is sheltering in the Ecuadorean embassy in London to avoid extradition to Sweden and possibly the USA, and all efforts are being made by the powers that be to shut down WikiLeaks.

On opening night (10/7) Em.Prof. Stuart Rees (chair of the Sydney Peace Foundation) will be a special guest opening the show.


Wed 10 Jul, 7:30pm–9:30pm
Thu 11 Jul, 9:30pm–11:00pm
Fri 12 Jul, 7:30pm–9:30pm
Sat 13 Jul, 7:30pm–9:45pm

Where: St Luke’s Church Enmore, 11 Stanmore Road, Enmore, Sydney

Restrictions: All Ages

Ticket Information:

  • General Admission: $20.00
  • Concession (low waged, pensioners)): $15.00
  • Concession (students): $10.00


In answer to Arundhati Roy’s call for resistance to the current Empire, we have invited a range of guests, with strong links to the subject matter, to respond to the show in their own special way.

10th: Emeritus Professor Stuart Rees
A champion of social justice and human rights, Professor Rees is also Chair of the Sydney Peace Foundation. Stuart presided over the awarding of the Sydney Peace Prize to both Arundhati Roy (in 2004) and Noam Chomsky (in 2011).

11th: Darrio Phillips & Angela Canalese
Darrio is a pioneer of street dancing and Krump in Australia. Angela is a free styling dance nomad. For them, dance is all about freedom.

12th: Fightin’ Father Dave
As minister of the Anglican Holy Trinity Church in Dulwich Hill, Fr Dave Smith is renowned for his social justice work, particularly the rehabilitation of youths off the streets. And dancers Darrio Phillips & Angela Canalese will appear once more.

13th: Dirty Voodoo Blues Band
Young musicians from our Kinetic Jazz family: Frank Dasent, Michael Gordon, Novak Manojlovik, Shota Matsamura, Axel Powrie & Finn Ryan.

image001Box Office & Kinetic Café open from 7pm (NB on Thursday from 9pm)

The Café will be serving yummy winter food, drinks and other delights