Hysterical: How do you wear the labels painted on you?

MEDIA RELEASE | 04 JUNE 2024

OH, ARTEMIS! THEATRE COLLECTIVE AND ANYWHERE FESTIVAL BRISBANE PRESENT

PRODUCED AND DIRECTED BY NOELLE GREENWOOD

For one night only on Sunday 4 August at 7.30 pm, Meanjin-based theatre collective Oh, Artemis! will reprise their acclaimed improvised theatre production, Hysterical, at The Paint Factory Yeronga, as part of the 2024 Anywhere Festival Brisbane.

Hysterical follows the stories of three women at pivotal moments in their lives and explores how the labels that are painted on us throughout our lives shape the decisions we make and the people we become.

Performers will be inspired by real journal entries submitted by the audience ahead of time. They have not seen the entries before and the stories that unfold will be entirely crafted on the spot.

Following a sell out debut show at Back Dock Arts and a successful run at the New Zealand Improv Festival last year, this rendition of Hysterical will be performed at The Paint Factory in Yeronga, a centrepiece of the local artistic community and an Anywhere Festival closing weekend hub venue.

“It seems fitting, for a show that explores how we wear the labels that are painted on us, to be bringing it to life in an old abandoned paint factory,” said producer and director Noelle Greenwood. 

“This is the beauty of the Anywhere Festival, where art comes alive in the most unlikely of places.”

Greenwood will be joined on stage by seasoned improvisers Liz Talbot, Kelsey Hamill and Chris Milne as the performers explore various themes around childhood, coming of age and womanhood.

“We’re incredibly excited that Noelle has assembled this stellar cast of experienced actors,” says returning cast member, Liz Talbot. 

“Each of the actors are captivating and talented performers in their own right. Together, this cast is sure to deliver an outstanding performance which will have the audience hooked from the very first scene…  whatever that ends up being.”

From the comical and absurd to the tender and raw, and everything in between, Hysterical is a show for anyone who’s ever felt the weight of a label dragging them down.

Tickets for this 60 minute immersive performance are just $30. Tickets are available online at anywhere.is.

FOR BOOKING OR FESTIVAL ENQUIRIES EMAIL JUSTASKUS [AT] ANYWHERE.IS 
FOR SHOW MEDIA ENQUIRIES EMAIL OHARTEMIS.THEATRECO [AT] GMAIL.COM


ABOUT: OH, ARTEMIS!

Oh, Artemis! is a performance collective based in Meanjin (Brisbane), Australia. 

Artemis, goddess of the hunt and protector of women and their choices, saw what marriage and ‘belonging’ to a man meant for the women in her life and fought for her right to never marry or belong to any man. Artemis, quite literally, gave no f**ks. 

Today, women everywhere draw strength from this ancient Grecian goddess and her fierce self-advocacy as we fight for our own bodily autonomy and right to exist free from the shackles of the patriarchy. 

With a blend of comedy and drama, the improvised and scripted performances brought to life by Oh, Artemis! make a conscious effort to centre women’s stories and encourage women everywhere to unapologetically take up space. 

Hysterical, directed and produced by Noelle Greenwood, is Oh, Artemis!’s flagship show. It has been performed to sell out crowds and critical acclaim in both bespoke performances and theatre festivals alike.

CAST & CREATIVES

  • Producer / Director: Noelle Greenwood
  • Starring: Liz Talbot, Kelsey Hamill, Noelle Greenwood and Chris Milne
  • Set design: Noelle Greenwood

Hysterical’s original cast, September 2023.
L-R: Chris Milne, Caitlin McGrath, Noelle Greenwood, Liz Talbot


DIRECTOR PROFILE: NOELLE GREENWOOD

A fierce feminist, human rights activist, single mother, daughter and sister, Noelle speaks and writes with conviction, passion and authenticity in her advocacy for others.

On stage, Noelle has delivered her message of strength in vulnerability in fast-paced comedic Chicago styles and slower, organic, narrative styles. She thrives when underpinned by a melody and exploring complex themes. 

This breadth and agility in her style has seen her perform regularly as a cast member with Big Fork Theatre (including two House Teams), Impro Queensland, Pigasus Productions and, now, Oh! Artemis Theatre Collective. Noelle has performed at local and international festivals since 2019 including New Zealand Improv Festival (2019, 2023), Brisbane Improv Festival (2021–2024) and Anywhere Festival (2021, 2022).

Noelle’s debut into Directing and Producing theatre came in 2023 when she had a wild idea about creating a feminist love letter to the way women absorb, carry and wear the labels that are painted on us throughout our lives. Using real life journal entries as a jumping off point for a one hour improvised show, Noelle crafted a theater experience in Hysterical that has been touted as “voyeristic”, “hopeful” and “a bold, heartbreaking, heartwarming and truthful reflection of women’s lives now.”

Noelle is a writer and (mostly unpublished) poet, turning to writing as a creative outlet whenever a stage is not in reach. More recently, under the banner of Oh, Artemis!, Noelle has ventured into writing and performing scripted work with sketch comedy, including the feminist piece Hank Talker of National Smiles performed at Big Fork Theatre’s popular Get It* Inya sketch night.

When she’s not squeezing as much joy as she can out of improv, Noelle can be found facilitating workshops and fostering creativity and innovation in corporate teams as a strategy consultant.


PRAISE FOR HYSTERICAL

The following are extracts from show reviews of Hysterical’s performance at the New Zealand Anywhere Festival (performed under the title, A Bit Dramatic).

Eleanor Collins, ellebell, NZ:

“A bold, heartbreaking, heartwarming and truthful reflection of women’s lives now.”

“It’s astounding that these stories were made up on the spot.”

“… the cast created characters with such depth and complexity that left such an impression… [The stories] were handled with respect and sensitivity and dramatized to the point where they felt as truthful and real as the journal entries.”

“A masterclass in storytelling and how to navigate the complexities of culture and identity wars without being patronising or pushing an agenda.”


Ciarán Searle, Wellingtonista, NZ:

“…it feels quite voyeuristic to hear the innermost thoughts of what we know is a real person sitting amongst us.”

“It is very clear to see the trust and experience between the players as they push against the focal characters, reinforcing their self-doubts and insecurities.”

“Each relationship is played to highlight its complexity – there is bad with the good, and good with the bad. The emotive performances read as genuine and some real tears are shed. The human stories that we are invited into resonate for performers and audience alike. Ultimately, though, these stories are hopeful.”


Margaret Austin, Theatre View, NZ:

“…here is content usually presented in a scripted work of some weightiness.”

“…scenarios sympathetic to women and the labelling they can suffer from, and which can hold them back, marring both self-image and relationships.”


Thalia Kehoe Rowden, Wellingtonista, NZ:

“The combination of genuine journals and fictional imaginings really works, and gives extra dimension to the stories.”

“it’s great to see women’s ordinary stories centred in the show, and to have such skilled improvisers explore the gendered subtleties of how we see ourselves and each other.”

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