Back by popular demand, this is one of the most coveted tickets in town. Good luck.

Playwright Kate Mulvany has adapted Craig Silvey's 2009 Indie Book of the Year, Jasper Jones, for the stage — and scored a 2015 Nick Enright Prize nomination in the process. It was one of the hardest tickets in Sydney to get when it graced the Belvoir stage in January 2016, and now it's back by popular demand for a limited run. If you see a ticket, jump on it. Seriously.

It's Western Australia in the 1960s. Charlie Bucktin is a clever 14-year-old whose ambition is writing The Great Australian Novel. But he's faced with a moral dilemma when Jasper Jones, an indigenous boy who serves as the town's scapegoat, turns up at the window asking for help.

Jasper has unwittingly come across a crime scene. But he's too scared to tell anyone, because he knows he'll cop the blame, without question or fair trial. So he asks Charlie for help in solving the mystery. In the suspenseful story that develops, Jasper Jones explores race relations, the Vietnam War and small-town Australian culture, alongside teenage friendships, word play and the complexities of growing up.

Mulvany deftly adapts Silvey's words for the stage, keeping the right balance of tension and humour. At Belvoir, her script is directed by Anne-Louise Sarks, with Guy Simon playing Jasper Jones and Tom Conroy in the role of Charles Bucktin.

Published on January 02, 2017 by Jasmine Crittenden

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