The Office mashed with a cage fight.
A dangerously comic physical performance.
An emotive generational showdown.
Two blokes in an office. One older, one younger, each body pushed to its limits in this hilarious and ultimately tender piece of physical theatre. These men challenge each other in a series of comical one-upmanships that build to a moment of impact where everything is suspended, the flash of bared teeth, the mutual reliance on the fight, the desperation and loneliness of success.
Cockfight is a poetic look at the power play that occurs between men and the frailty of the body. It is evocative of age and passing time and questions our culture’s desperate desire for achievement. Without each other these two performers have nothing left to fight for.
At the heart of Cockfight is a very real relationship between Josh and Gav who have been working together for many years. Their humour, trust and understanding allows them to take extreme physical risks that will leave you on the edge of your seat.
Bringing together the inventive theatricality of physical theatre company THE FARM with NORPA’s Artistic Director Julian Louis, Cockfight will provoke and excite in equal measure.
“…the work is physical theatre at its most extreme: bodies slam into walls and office furniture, and perilous interlocking rolls, tackles and lunges fling performers through space.”
“Its physicality is masterful and its comedy biting”
“And it is sidesplittingly hilarious and beautifully athletic and graceful.”
“A fun-filled romp combining humour and impressive physicality, sure to please comedy and dance fans alike.”
“At times broadly comedic, with a Buster Keaton-esque physicality on show, Cockfight switches effortlessly to moments of beauty and poignancy”
Cockfight was developed by members of THE FARM with guest artist Julian Louis. At THE FARM work is made in collaboration; everyone involved brings something to the creative process that shapes the piece. All animals are equal.
Performers Josh Thomson & Gavin Webber
Core creatives Julian Louis, Gavin Webber, Kate Harman & Josh Thomson
Sound Design Luke Smiles
LX Design Mark Howett
Set Design by Josh Thomson in consultation with Joey Ruigrok
Co-produced by Performing Lines & NORPA
Gavin is co-Artistic Director of The Farm, based on the Gold Coast, Queensland. For over 25 years Gavin has had a successful career both as a performer and as a dance-theatre maker splitting his time between Australia and Europe. As Artistic Director of Dancenorth he took the company from regional Australia to national and international touring, receiving many accolades including six Greenroom awards in 2009. He was also one of the founders of renowned Collaborative ensembles Splintergroup and Animal Farm Collective, early incarnations of The Farm, whose work has been seen across four continents.
Photo: Darcy Grant
Joshua has worked with companies such as Tasdance, Gavin Webber’s Dancenorth, Perth Theatre Company, Expressions Dance Company, Splinter Group, La Boite Theatre Company and PVC - Physical Virus Collective (Germany). Animal Farm Collective, Legs On the Wall, Shaun Parker & Company, Opera Australia and Queensland Opera. He has created Blokes with Matt Cornell for the 2014 Darwin Festival and is a member of The Farm, and a collaborator with Craig Bary on In Difference.
Photo: Darcy Grant
Kate is a dancer, performer, choreographer and collaborator who has created and performed in works within the realms of dance, theatre, circus, performative installation and in projects created with amateurs and young people.
In 2005 she joined Dancenorth under the direction of Gavin Webber. After four years with the company she relocated to Germany where she spent 5 years predominately working with PVC Freiburg and KLARA Theater. Whilst continuing to perform in numerous works within multiple genres, Kate also created a number of her own works and collaborations . Since 2013 Kate has once again been working out of Australia and focusing her energy on projects with The Farm and developing her solo choreographic practise.
Photo: Darcy Grant
Julian is a theatre maker and Artistic Director of NORPA (Northern Rivers Performing Arts) based in Lismore. Julian has directed theatre, opera and circus as well as large-scale site-specific works. For NORPA Julian has created and been the Artistic Director on a number of productions including Railway Wonderland (2012/2015), My Radio Heart (a co-production with Urban Theatre Projects), Open House (2011) a circus work performed in a residential house in Lismore. Julian has also directed Engine (2010), The Bloody Bride (2010) and Not Like Beckett (2007). Julian’s made works for Perth International Arts Festival and Sydney Festival. He is a graduate of Charles Sturt University BA Theatre/ Media, NIDA’s Directors course and trained as a performer in London with Philippe Gaulier.
Photo: Kate Holmes
Luke creates highly detailed soundtracks for theatre, dance and film, working across all areas of music composition, sound design, foley and sound effects editing. Working under his business name motion laboratories Luke has composed and produced soundtracks for many Australian and International artists & companies, including: Australian Dance Theatre, Bare Bones Dance Company (UK), Belvoir, Byron Perry, Chunky Move, Dancenorth, Frontier Danceland (Singapore), Gabrielle Nankivell, Nederlands Dans Theatre (Holland), Ox (Belgium/Slovenia), Rambert Dance Company (UK), Stompin, Sydney Dance Company, Sydney Theatre Company, Tasdance, The Farm, West Australian Ballet, & Windmill Theatre Company.
Mark Howett studied Theatre Design 1981, at Yale University. The Rakes Progress 1983 for Opera Australia was his first significant production. He has worked as a lighting Designer, Video and Set designer for international productions and as a Director for film and theatre.
Awards : Robert Helpmann Award for Cloudstreet , 2002, Lighting Design. Robert Helpman Award Best Presented Concert“ for Kura Tunga, Australian Arts Orchestra, 2005. Greenroom Award 2006 Best Lighting Design for The Love of three Oranges, 2004, Opera Australia, Lighting Design. Greenroom Award 2009 for Roadkill, Splintergroup, 2009, Lighting Design.
Empire Theatre Toowoomba, QLD
Darwin Entertainment Centre Darwin, NT
Theatre Royal Hobart, TAS
Frankston Arts Centre Frankston, VIC
Gasworks Arts Park Melbourne, VIC
Mandurah Performing Arts Centre Mandurah, WA
Arts Margaret River Margaret River, WA
State Theatre Centre of WA Perth, WA
Canberra Theatre Centre Canberra, ACT
Centro Cultural Gabriela Mistral Santiago, Chile
Home of the Arts Gold Coast, QLD
Laban Theatre London, UK
Storyhouse Chester, UK
Gulbenkian Canterbury, UK
Lighthouse Poole, UK
CAST Doncaster, UK
Oxford Playhouse, Pegasus Theatre Oxford, UK
Nottingham Playhouse Nottingham, UK
Jerwood Dancehouse Ipswich, UK
Dance Massive, Arts House Melbourne, VIC
APAM at QPAC Brisbane, QLD
Centre of Contemporary Arts Cairns, QLD
Dance North Townsville, QLD
NORPA Lismore, NSW
Performing Lines develops, produces and tours new and transformative Australian performing arts. For enquiries regarding Cockfight please contact:
Fenn Gordon, Senior Producer
office +61 2 9319 0066
mobile + 61 424 743 705
Photos | Darcy Grant