5 MAY – 3 JUN 2023
[Danny Ball’s] performance [is] pulsing with self-loathing, self-doubt and an implosive, masculine energy that is both angry and sensual.
Loaded is...a fascinating artefact of a Melbourne that is irretrievably evolving
Stephen Nicolazzo's direction is precise, thoughtful and fearless.
Simultaneously frightening and soulful.
Almost 30 years ago, Christos Tsiolkas’ debut novel Loaded painted a portrait of a young man who is restlessly searching for himself in opposing worlds. To this day, the story resonates with migrant and queer communities as a reminder that you are not alone.
Ari (Danny Ball, A Beginner’s Guide to Grief) is 19 and unemployed—he doesn’t want to be gay and he doesn’t want to be Greek. He doesn’t want to be anything. Drawn by the alluring pulse of Collingwood’s gay clubs, he finds an escape, and a family in the form of drag queens and one-night stands.
First adapted as the award-winning 1998 film Head On, then reimagined as an audio adaptation in 2020, Loaded finally takes the mainstage with director Stephen Nicolazzo (Looking for Alibrandi) joining writers Dan Giovannoni and Christos Tsiolkas (The Slap, Merciless Gods) to present Ari’s anarchic odyssey that sees him travel the four corners of Melbourne.
Honest, raw, and passionate—a lot can happen in a sweaty night at The Peel.
A celebration night for Greek & queer communities and their friends.
6pm – 6.40pm / Pre-show In Conversation
with Christos Tsiolkas and Maria Dimopoulos AM with audience Q&A
7pm / Performance of Loaded
8.45pm – 10.30pm / Afterparty
Featuring Cats and the Canary (Greek Swing)
Opening act Artemis Ioannides
Greek nibbles + food available from Koyzina Greek street food pop-up.
Happy Hour prices at the Malthouse Bar all night.
8.30pm – 10.30pm / DJ Arlen De Silva
CAST / 'ARI'
Set & Costume Designer /
Lighting Designer /
Composer & Sound Designer /
Stage Manager /
Choreographer and Movement Director /
Language Consultant, Translation & Dialect Coach /
BESEN PLACEMENT (DRAMATURGY) /
Besen Placement (Directing) /
95 mins approx. (no interval)
This production contains use of smoke, haze and dynamic sound, homophobic, misogynistic and culturally derogative slurs, culturally insensitive and homophobic material, descriptions of sexual acts – consensual and non-consensual, descriptions of drug use, descriptions of needles, and references to death, dying, and suicide. Loaded is recommended for ages 18+.
All warnings are subject to change.
FREQUENT COARSE LANGUAGE
The following words are used frequently throughout the show:
The following coarse language is used on occasion throughout the show:
Maláka (wanker), Mikropsoli (Greek for limpdick)
HOMOPHOBIC, MISOGYNISTIC AND CULTURALLY DEROGATIVE SLURS
There is frequent use of homophobic, misogynistic and culturally derogative slurs throughout the show. The words used are:
Wog, Mussie, Fag, Faggot, Dyke, Pousti (Greek for faggot), Poustides (Greek for faggots), Poutana (Greek for whore)
CULTURALLY INSENSITIVE AND HOMOPHOBIC MATERIAL
The character of Ari sexually and racially objectifies Muslim women he walks past on the street by describing them as Mussies and speaking about the tightness of their clothing.
The crisis point of the character of Ari throughout the play is reconciling his homosexuality with his traditional Greek culture. He challenges the traditional values of his intergenerational Greek community, family and church. He also frequently recalls multiple instances where he and other characters in his life were made to feel ntropi (shame) because of their sexuality.
EXPLICIT DESCRIPTIONS OF SEXUAL ACTS—CONSENSUAL AND NON-CONSENSUAL
Ari explicitly describes undertaking multiple sexual acts with consenting partners including kissing, oral sex and solo and peer masturbation. There are two instances where there is non-consensual ejaculation in a sexual partner’s mouth.
No explicit sexual acts occur physically on the stage. No nudity occurs on stage.
EXPLICIT DESCRIPTIONS OF DRUG USE
Ari explicitly describes himself and others doing drugs in multiple sections of the piece. The drugs used by various characters are Heroin, Speed, Acid, Amyl Nitrate and MDMA. The various methods of drug taking include needles, inhalation and snorting. No drug-taking devices are used on stage.
DESCRIPTIONS OF NEEDLES
There is one instance where Ari describes taking drugs by needle, including a detailed description of the process. No physical needles are used on stage.
REFERENCES TO DEATH, DYING AND SUICIDE
Throughout the show, there are multiple colloquial references to death, dying and suicide.
Ari casually uses the term kill in the context of referring to punishment from a parent on several occasions. Ari uses the word dead in the context of saying I’m in trouble. Ari mentions once a suicide fence in Western Melbourne but goes into no further detail.