It’s Australia, 1854
The Goldrush is at the height of its popularity and a tidal wave of humanity from every creed, class and country has been swept up and washed upon the shores of this strange and distant land.
The Government struggles to maintain control and order but as thousands of hopeful men and women abandon essential posts and positions, the strain and turmoil of gold fever threatens to bring a new and fragile colony to its knees.
When young, Australian-born digger William Quinlan arrives on the Victorian Goldfields full of hope and promise, he enters a world more complicated and dangerous than he could ever have imagined.
Caught in an ever-escalating conflict between oppressive government forces and revolutionary ideologues, William along with so many others, will learn the real cost of gold and the true value of freedom.
As stockades rise and diggers fall it will lead every individual to question what they are prepared to gain and what they are prepared to lose?
Relive history in this dramatic and personal retelling of the people caught in the maelstrom of one of the most influential events in Australia’s modern history.
The world premiere of ‘Bakery Hill – An Australian Rebellion’, produced by Yellow Line Productions, and directed by Ben Roorda, was performed at the Bryan Brown Theatre and Function Centre in Bankstown on April 15,16 and 17, 2021
‘Bakery Hill – An Australian Rebellion’ is an original Australian Musical. Written by Father and Son duo, James and Russell Tredinnick, it tells the story of the various characters on both sides of the Rebellion that led to the battle at the Eureka Stockade in Victoria in early December 1854.
It is a story of digging for gold, of Miners’ Licences issued by the Hotham Government of the day, of the fight to be heard and to defend one’s rights and liberties. It is a story of love and loss, of honour and duty, of conviction and courage, of strength and struggle.
It is a story based on strong historical research but with an equally strong sense of narrative structure and depth of emotion, designed to engage an audience fully and to bring history to life.
With a cast of twenty four, ours is a number of different stories within a story, each featuring characters with their own struggles and motives, strong women and men, none of them all good or all bad, and each with decisions to make based on the situation they have found themselves in. Traditionally, the Eureka story has been told from the perspective of Peter Lalor, the leader of the Miners. It has been a story of good versus bad, of right versus wrong. We wanted to dig a little deeper.
And our research turned up William Quinlan, the only Australian born person to be killed at the battle. And in the process, we found our story. History has largely forgotten Will, which makes his story all the more interesting. The history we read in textbooks is often the story of the older powerful white man, often of privilege and money.
At Yellow Line Productions, we are committed to telling stories that have not been told before, to finding the story behind the story, the story of the ‘little guy’. Yellow Line Productions is about working with Australians of all backgrounds, to tell Australian stories of all kinds to Australian audiences of all ages.
We are proud of our show and we believe that it has great potential to be used for educational purposes, to aid educators in achieving and optimising a range of educational outcomes in a range of subject areas.
We would very much enjoy discussing ‘Bakery Hill’ with educators in terms of how the show, and the people involved in the show, could be used to engage your students to a greater understanding of this vital part of Australia’s history and of the people involved in these tragic and significant events that led to important changes in our democratic history.
The show, as it was performed in Bankstown, is most appropriate for children 13 years and older, based mainly on some simulated violence within the telling. It is a story of a violent time. We are prepared to adapt the on-stage violence etc for future productions to make it more suitable for younger audiences.
We believe that there are many educational opportunities that ‘Bakery Hill’ potentially offers your teachers, Senior Primary and Secondary students, and school in general. Activities that we are currently considering for future school use include:
- Having an educational performance season at various local venues, to which schools would be invited. This could include opportunities for Q and A sessions with cast, crew and creators
- Having some of our actors come and perform and discuss small sections of the show at your school
- Having the writers and creatives of the show visit your school to discuss issues related to the show, and its creation, with students
- Having members of the cast and creative team facilitate more active sessions at your school in play building, scriptwriting, singing and the role of music in story telling etc
- Having the creators come and work with groups of your students and teachers to devise and develop your own original stories, musical or otherwise, through to performance
Relevant topics within certain subject areas include:
- History– Engaging students in:
- developing a greater understanding of the development of Democracy within Australia
- examining in detail the events and the characters involved in the Eureka Rebellion,
- exploring what factors and situations within events in our history lead certain people to make certain crucial decisions
- wanting to read more and do their own digging
- discussing the issues of Primary and Secondary sources and different perspectives within the telling of history
- Drama– Engaging students in discussions and activities aimed at developing a greater understanding of:
- Narrative structure
- Drama Elements
- Character Arc and development within an original work
- What makes for engaging story telling
- Script writing and play building
- English– Engaging students in Reading, Writing and Talking and Listening activities re:
- Language within scripts
- Lyrics and poetry styles/conventions
- Effective narrative structure
- Music– Engaging students in discussions and practical activities aimed at further developing an understanding of:
- Harmonies in singing
- Melodies and chord progressions
- General composition techniques and genres
- Musical Theatre as a musical form
We would be excited to hear from you, and to discuss how your school might best benefit from becoming more directly involved in some of the activities listed above, or others by discussion, involving the ‘Bakery Hill – An Australian Rebellion’ team.
No price structure has yet been determined.
The ‘Bakery Hill’ team may be contacted:
- Email the Production Team: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Ring Russell (the Producer, co-creator and fellow teacher) on 0412641598
- Visit our website: www.yellowlinetheatre.com