The other half of the legend.
Set against the epic violence of the Trojan War, Holding Achilles by David Morton is a refreshing take on one of the ancient world’s best-known heroes, and his relationship with Patroclus, his not so well-known lover. As a young exile taken in by Achilles’ father, Patroclus faces hostility from the young hero until they are thrust together to train under the centaur Chiron, and the two form an unlikely friendship. As Achilles doggedly seeks to fulfil his mother’s prophecy to become a legend, their relationship becomes something more. But war with Troy is brewing, and the two young men find themselves caught between their hopes for a future together and the brutal realities of the world that faces them.
This breathtaking new production from visual theatre masterminds Dead Puppet Society and physical theatre virtuosos Legs On The Wall reclaims the queer aspects of The Iliad. Set to a haunting new score composed by Tony Buchen and Chris Bear with Montaigne, and a live performance by Montaigne, this innovative new work blends heightened physicality and visual storytelling with an ensemble cast to weave a legend of mythic proportions. A tale of trials, grief and love - Holding Achilles is an epic tale about a fearless bond forged in the toughest of times.
By David Morton.
Presented by Dead Puppet Society, Legs On The Wall, Brisbane Festival, Sydney Festival, Queensland Performing Arts Centre and Glass Half Full Productions.
Brisbane: 29 August - 10 September 2022
Sydney: 19 - 22 January 2023
This project has been assisted by the Australian Government's Major Festivals Initiative, managed by the Australia Council, its arts funding and advisory body, in association with the Confederation of Australian International Arts Festivals Inc., commissioned by Brisbane Festival, Queensland Performing Arts Centre, Sydney Festival and Glass Half Full Productions together with Bristol Old Vic and Northampton Royal and Derngate in the UK.
This project has been assisted by the Australian Government through the Australia Council, its arts funding and advisory body. It is also supported by the Queensland Government through Arts Queensland.
You can rent Holding Achilles and our other productions Ishmael and The Wider Earth via QPAC’s Digital Stage platform, as well as access our Digital Workshop offerings and explore behind the scenes content to discover more about how our productions are made.
Director and Co-Creator David Morton
Movement Director and Co-Creator Joshua Thomson
Creative Producer Nicholas Paine
Music by Tony Buchen and Chris Bear with Montaigne
Music performed live by Montaigne
Set Co-Designers Anna Cordingley and David Morton
Costume Designer Anna Cordingley
Lighting Design Ben Hughes
Sound Designer Tony Brumpton
Rigging Designer David Jackson
Puppet Design Dead Puppet Society
Dramaturg Louise Gough
Associate Director Matt Seery
Technical Director Scott Barton
Production Stage Manager Kat O'Halloran
Deputy Stage Manager Nicole Neil
Head Rigger Byron Cleasby
Head of Lighting Chris Conway
Sound Engineer Benn Sargood
Head of Fabrication Savannah Mojidi
Costume Makers Fiona Warmbath and Gayle MacGregor
Costume Assistant Azure Shofield
Fabricators Maggie Alexion, Carol Jelley, Fanaia Novoa, Liz Prior, Giancarlo Salamanque
Associate Producers James Beach and Lauren Eisinger
Stephen Madsen - Achilles
Karl Richmond - Patroclus
Ellen Bailey - Ajax / Hector / Puppeteer (Baby Bear)
John Batchelor - Odysseus
Lauren Jackson - Agamemnon / Lead Puppeteer (Bear)
Christopher Tomkinson - Meneleus / Peleus
Nic Prior - Paris / Chiron
Christy Tran - Briseis
Caroline Dunphy - Priam / Chrsyses
Johnas Liu - Ensemble / Counterweight
Hear from some of the cast of Holding Achilles.