Montague Basement says farewell to KXT’s Kings Cross Hotel location with Martin Crimp’s seminal Attempts on Her Life 

KXT Resident Company and Sydney independent mainstay Montague Basement will farewell the iconic Kings Cross Hotel venue in July with a daring new production of Martin Crimp’s Attempts on Her Life

In February of this year, bAKEHOUSE Theatre Co announced that KXT was on the move, with plans to open a new and bigger venue later in 2022. 

As their final production in the Kings Cross Hotel space, Montague Basement have chosen Crimp’s experimental work exploring the fractious and contentious relationships between individual identity and the media.

“I think in this moment of intense vulnerability for the performing arts, after the pandemic accentuated decades of abandonment by the government, this work asks the biggest question we can ask as artists,” says Lusty-Cavallari. “What does it mean to represent something?”

Using video live feed and an ensemble of five female performers – Lucy Burke, Bridget Haberecht, Lucinda Howes, Josephine Lee and Ebony Tucker – the work centres loosely around the character of Anne (or Annie or Anya or Anushka), who is across the play’s seventeen scenes described as an artist, a terrorist, a brand of car and more. 

“It’s a play about the very act of embodiment and representation both on a fundamental philosophical level and a political one – how the circulation of images and identity become perverted under late capitalism,” says Lusty-Cavallari. 

“It was the scope of the questions being asked that made me feel like it was the right play for a very wrong time.”

Since KXT opened under bAKEHOUSE’s management in 2016, Montague Basement has maintained a regular presence in the unique traverse space, one of the first companies to perform there in 2016 with Charles O’Grady’s Kaleidoscope

The company also opened KXT’s Bordello Space in Kings Cross Hotel in 2018 with an immersive production of Rainer Werner Fassbinder’s Blood on the Cat’s Neck and re-opened the main space following the 2020 lockdown with their sold-out 2021 production of Lusty-Cavallari’s Videotape. As a resident company, Montague Basement also partners with KXT to provide artist development to young writers through The Laborator, and mentorship to emerging producers.

“If there’s one venue that Montague Basement really came to call home, it’s KXT,” says Lusty-Cavallari.  “We pitched this project before it was announced that KXT was moving but it feels very apt that this will be one of the last shows in the space as it was always intended as a kind of love letter to the venue.”

“We couldn’t think of a better company to bring down the final metaphorical curtain at KXT!” says bAKEHOUSE Artistic Director and KXT Creative Director Suzanne Millar. 

“Montague Basement have been a fixture in our programming since 2016 and the work they have delivered has been both thoughtful and adventurous. And their commitment to the support of emerging artists has played an important role in shoring up the community that have called KXT home. We are delighted to be hosting them at KX one final time.”

“A big part of the initial pitch was really showing how this quirky traverse space is an opportunity instead of a problem to be solved,” says Lusty-Cavallari. “By choosing this somewhat canonical work I wanted to show why you’d choose to stage work at KXT and create something that only this space can offer.”

What: Attempts on Her Life by Martin Crimp

When: July 15 – 30 | 7:30pm (5pm Sundays, 6pm Saturdays)

Where: KXT, Level 2, Kings Cross Hotel 

How much: $20 – $45

Tickets: https://events.humanitix.com/attempts-on-her-life 

Directed by Saro Lusty-Cavallari

Assistant Director Persephone Hitzke-Dean

Produced by Claire Ferguson and Imogen Gardam

Set and Costume Design by Rita Naidu

Lighting Design by Sophie Pekbilimli

Sound and Video Design by Saro Lusty-Cavallari

Stage Manager Charlotte Breene

With Lucy Burke, Bridget Haberecht, Lucinda Howes, Josephine Lee and Ebony Tucker 

This work was supported through Shopfront Arts Co-op’s Open Shop program. 

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