Remaining a vital masterwork 20 years after it was penned by Wesley Enoch and Deborah Mailman, The 7 Stages of Grieving is a wise and powerful play about the grief of Aboriginal people and the hope of reconciliation.

Remaining a vital masterwork 20 years after it was penned by Wesley Enoch and Deborah Mailman, The 7 Stages of Grieving is a wise and powerful play about the grief of Aboriginal people and the hope of reconciliation. In this one-everywoman show, Chenoa Deemal (Queensland Theatre Company’s Mother Courage and Her Children, ABC3’s Splatalot) spins poignant stories of different people from different mobs – tear-streaked tales of tragedy go hand-in-hand with jubilant celebrations of simple survival.

Funny, devastatingly sad, politically relevant and culturally profound as it traverses the phases of Aboriginal history, The 7 Stages of Grieving is an invitation to face hard truths, to join hands and grieve. It shares true and personal stories that need to keep being told. And perhaps most importantly, it opens a dialogue about the issues that separate and unite Indigenous and non-Indigenous people.

Actress Chenoa Deemal says, “Watching that hit such an emotional chord, it stayed with me for years. Seeing a visual representation of a beautiful and established culture suddenly wiped clear with the stroke of a hand was emotionally jarring and brought to my attention how powerful theatre can be.”

In an environment where Indigenous Australians battle racism, deaths in custody, a history of violence and anguish of the land, The 7 Stages of Grieving is a strong reminder of Indigenous peoples’ will to survive, sense of humour and irony, and reinforces the traditional role of Indigenous Australians as storytellers.

“… The 7 Stages of Grieving still speaks to us. Wise, honest, tender, funny and eloquent …”
– Australian Stage.

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