Thank you for joining us for The Naked Truth and supporting Act IV and women’s cancer research. We hope you enjoy the show!
Act IV began from a desire to see and perform in plays with a majority female cast… To tell stories about women who talk and laugh and love like real women do.
The Naked Truth is a play that we would want to go and see – a play that otherwise might not be performed in Sydney.
We don’t take ourselves too seriously. We just want to go to the theatre and have a bloody good laugh, maybe shed a tear and celebrate female friendship. This is what we hope The Naked Truth delivers.
Kaitlin, Melinda and Wendy x
A note from the Director
When Act IV chose me to direct Dave Simpson’s comedy I was thrilled. The Naked Truth addresses difficult yet current issues of body image, cancer, betrayal, sexual expression, self-esteem and the various processes by which we deal with trauma and heal.
Set against the back drop of modern day Northern England this play is a testament to how taking a risk, summoning courage and dignity despite the presence of fear, can make us better people. Five very different women decide to attend pole dancing classes and it alters their lives forever. One finds love, one finds self-respect, one comes of age, one deals with death, and one finds freedom.
Presenting the characters in a naturalistic style has been both challenging and exhilarating. It would have been easy to present stereotypical representations of the fat girl, the one with cancer, the dumb chick, the one with obvious self-esteem issues and so on. However, this tremendously talented team of performers have delved deep to discover the truth of the story and portray convincingly real people. Each of them are heroines yet still ordinary people I hope audiences will both relate to and be inspired by. I suspect there is a bit of each of them in all of us.
Ruth Fingret, Director
Ruth has worn many professional hats over the years working in industries ranging from IT to the not for profit sectors.
Ten years ago she pursued writing as hobby – since then studying with The Writers Studio and others. She now writes and directs for theatre, specialising in short form, and has received two commissions for full length plays in 2013 for Future Classic Theatre. In 2014 she directed Arthur’s Place by Ben Eadie at the TAP Theatre.
Since 2010 she has been involved in Short and Sweet: wrote and directed You Used to Call me Pattycakes, 2011 (1st in audience vote); wrote and directed Downsizing, 2012 (2nd Place Judges and Audience); directed Pet Envy (2nd place audience vote); wrote and directed Why We’re Here, 2013 (2nd in audience vote, 3rd in judges); wrote and directed Charity Case 2014 ( 1st Audience Vote, 2nd Judges Choice, selected for Gala Variety Show, Seymour Centre); directed Grace by Alex Broun 2015; directed The Last Three Blondes, 2015, by Paul McDonald. In 2015 her play Chemistry Test won the finals for Crash Test Drama (winning both audience and judges vote). She has studied directing with Kate Gaul, Sarah Giles, Jonathon Wald and LaMama Umbria from New York city.
She is a volunteer Deputy Chair on the board of Actor’s Anonymous – a not for profit organisation that assists writers to bring new scripts to the stage. She directs public readings and performs script assessments for them almost monthly.
She currently coaches aspiring novelists through her work with The Writer’s Studio. As a writer and director she is obsessed with discovering the truth in a story.
Julia McNamara, Assistant Director
Born in San Francisco and raised in Sydney, Julia McNamara is keenly passionate about arts performance and production. Graduating from North Sydney Girls High School in 2015, she has written for and performed in the Page2Stage showcase; been selected for the NSW Public Schools Drama Ensemble; performed in The Schools Spectacular, ATYP and NIDA plays; was an Opera House compere; and will perform in OnStage 2016. Julia has been a Youth Advisor for Griffin Theatre Company and the Australian Theatre for Young People, as well as an intern for Short+Sweet International. In addition, Julia was an ATYP Foundation Commission selection Committee panel member (2012-2014); a finalist in ATYP’s national monologue writing competition (2013); and had the play she directed at Short+Sweet Theatre Festival (2015) come second in her heat. Julia’s goal is to garner industry knowledge and experience to allow her to explore diversity, equality and innovation by creating new intelligent works to challenge and inspire audiences.
Eden Fordham, Stage Manager / Tech
Eden has worked in theatre and events on numerous Melbourne and Sydney productions, festivals and events. She has completed a Double Diploma in Event Management 2010, Advance Diploma in Stage Management 2013 and is currently studying a Bachelor of Business (Event Management) 2016/17. As a Stage Manager/Technical Operator Eden has worked on Short and Sweet festival 2014/15, Outhouse Theatre Co (The Aliens), Blancmange Productions (The Punters Siren) and is excited to work along side Act IV Theatre Company on their production of The Naked Truth.
Melanie Araya (Gabby)
Melanie Araya is an actress and dancer well described for her confidence, dedication and quirky character. Melanie has trained as an actor at NIDA, ATYP and The Actors Hub, and graduated from Metro Screen with a Diploma in Screen and Media in 2014. In 2012, Melanie co-founded, produced and acted with youth theatre company Mon Sans Productions. Her credits with Mon Sans Productions include Dog Sees God (2012), Not a Word (2013), A Broken Law (2014). Melanie’s passion for diverse storytelling is reflected in her involvement with the Powerhouse Youth Theatre, and most recently, working on Spanish short horror film Desenmascarado (Unmasked) with Sydney Film School. Melanie’s interest and passion for physical theatre and movement led her to pole dancing in March 2014.
Kaitlin de Lacy (Faith)
Kaitlin has studied extensively at the National Institute of Dramatic Arts, Actors Centre Australia, Actors College of Theatre and Television and Darlo Drama. She has also studied abroad at London’s prestigious Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts where she completed the Shakespeare Summer School in 2012. Her theatre credits include Five Women Wearing the Same Dress (Act IV), which she also produced, Dancing at Lughnasa (Rosie), The Small Poppies (Clint), The Crucible (Mary Warren) and Who’s Afraid Of The Working Class (Trisha).
Hayley Flowers (Trisha)
Hayley Flowers is a graduate from The University of Wollongong, completing a Bachelor of Performance Degree in the Faculty of Creative Arts. Hayley has also completed a Bachelor of Teaching in Drama and English (Secondary) through Charles Sturt University. Hayley is a skilled singer and has toured with several NSW bands. Hayley is also the co-creator of award winning comedic web series Hei and Lo. Hayley took out the 2015’s LA WEB FEST Outstanding Achievement Award for “Best Lead Actress in a Drama” and the series was nominated for “Best Script Writing”. Hei and Lo was also in the official selection for screening at the festival and was further nominated in highly competitive International Academy of Web and Television Awards in Las Vegas.
Jeannie Gee (Sarah)
Jeannie studied drama in schools in the UK and Australia and, she still enjoys taking classes and learning different techniques at every opportunity. Some of her recent theatrical credits include: George’s Marvellous Medicine; Brother Daniel; Book of Days; Dying For It; Equus; The Vagina Monologues; Cat On A Hot Tin Roof; Sunshine Boys; Cosi; Bombshells; Charitable Intent; and Women Behind Bars. She has a number of short films and US television series to her credit and her face often pops up in television commercials. Jeannie is also a trained clown, working mainly with special needs children through Variety, the Children’s Charity; where she is also privileged to serve on a number of committees – and, she is a member of Actors Equity (MEAA)
Melinda Ryan (Bev)
With extensive training at NIDA, Actor’s Centre Australia, Darlo Drama and Improcorp (Lyn Pierse), Melinda is an experienced stage actor appearing in numerous plays including Five Women Wearing the Same Dress (Trisha) for Act IV, Love Song (Joan) for Gamut Theatre Co, The Jungle (Cynthia Page), Money and Friends (Vicki), Dancing at Lughnasa (Kate), The Girl with Red Hair (Ina) at Darlinghurst Theatre (Darlo Drama) and Antony and Cleopatra (Cleopatra) at Manly Vale Community Centre. Mel is also co-director of Gamut Theatre Co. Her production credits include John Kolvenbach’s Love Song for Gamut and Five Women Wearing the Same Dress and The Naked Truth for Act IV.
Wendy Winkler (Rita)
Wendy first found her love of the stage with roles in the musical theatre classics The Music Man, The Sentimental Bloke and Guys and Dolls. As part of the Criterion Players she has had roles in the music hall comedies True Blue Aussie Revue (solo singing and monologues as well as chorus) and Rome Sweet Rome (as Muesli). Her love of contemporary American Theatre has been showcased before an audience in scenes from Doubt, Rabbit Hole and Closer, while her Shakespeare credits include the roles of Rosalind from As You Like it and The Doctor in Macbeth. She has studied part-time at NIDA, Darlo Drama, ImproCorp (Improvisation) and ACA (Shakespeare and American Theatre). Last year Wendy produced and starred as Georganne in Five Women Wearing the Same Dress for Act IV.
A note from the NBCF
Breast cancer is the most common life-threatening cancer facing Australian women. One in 8 of us – our mothers, daughters, sisters, aunts, friends, ourselves – will be diagnosed, and eight women die every day in Australia.
The National Breast Cancer Foundation (NBCF) believes that research is the only way to prevent deaths from breast cancer. With money raised entirely by the Australian public, we’ve awarded more than $127 million to around 430 research projects since we were established in 1994. More people are surviving breast cancer, thanks to research, but too many people are still dying.
Your support of us through attending The Naked Truth is greatly appreciated – by us, by the researchers we fund, by the women whose lives are affected by breast cancer, and those who want to ensure the day will come where there will be zero deaths from breast cancer. For more information visit nbcf.org.au
To everyone who has supported our show and Act IV, we couldn’t have done it without you, but especially…
David Kagan, Dubdentist for additional music
Damian Ryan for mixing our music and audio
Lulu at Pole Academy for teaching us our sweet moves
Sydney Pole Studio for letting us use their amazing space
And, the staff and management at The World Bar, thank you!