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The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

SE production depicts lives of Australian colonists

By Martley Malenfant/reporter

If there were ever a time when students wanted to use a faux British accent and pretend they’re convicts, SE students will get the opportunity in the play Our Country’s Good.

Cast members of the SE Campus production of Our Country’s Good practice a scene at a recent rehearsal. The play is based on convicts who were sent to Australia from Great Britian and follows their punishment, sexuality and the class systems in the prison camps. It opens Oct. 10 and runs through Oct. 13 in the C.A. Roberson Theatre.
Photos by David Reid/The Collegian

The drama, which opens Oct. 10 on SE Campus, is based on convicts who were sent to Australia from Great Britain. It shows the class system in the convict camp and discusses themes such as sexuality, punishment and the idea that theater can be therapeutic for the convicts.

SE adjunct Megan Haratine, who directs the play, said what has been most challenging about the production was getting her students, especially ones new to acting, to perform multiple dialects.

“It’s not just a standard ‘OK, here’s your British dialect,’” she said. “You’ve got Hampshire dialect, we’ve got Irish, we’ve got Scottish, we’ve got Cockney, and we’ve got standard British.”

SE student Nate Davis plays 2nd Lt. Ralph Clark. While in Australia, Clark helps run a ship of convicts. Clark wants a promotion from the governor but, instead, is asked to direct a play as a way to establish morale with the convicts. Ralph worries about his wife back home in London, but he has an affair with convict Mary Brenam, played by SE student Tiana Rahman.

Davis said performing the love scene was a challenge.

Ryan Guthrie aims his rifle during a hunting scene at a rehearsal for Our Country’s Good on SE Campus.
Photos by David Reid/The Collegian

“I didn’t audition for Ralph Clark, but Megan pulled me aside and felt I was right for the role because of my previous work,” he said. “The love scene was tough because I had to talk to my girlfriend about it, but we worked it out.”

Mary has been convicted for stealing clothing. Rahman said her character is introverted until she is asked to be in the play, giving her more confidence than before. She also gains status because of the affair with Ralph.

Rahman said she has enjoyed playing Mary because she can relate to the character.

“In the presence of authority, she’s very submissive,” she said. “When she is alone with a person close to her, she is more playful. She speaks up more and more of a one-on-one person. I can relate because we both can be unassertive.”

Taylor Ann plays Meg Long, the oldest convict on the ship. Ann said her character is in charge of all the women on the ship. Ann, who also serves as stage manager, said she hopes to bring some humor to the play.

“I’m kind of the madame of the show, so I really get to have fun with this role,” she said. “There is comedy, but the play has plenty of adult themes. It’s a grimy show. Every character has flaws and weaknesses.”

Showtimes are 7:30 p.m. Oct. 10-13 with a 2 p.m. matinee Oct. 12 in the Roberson Theatre on SE Campus. General admission is $6, $3 for non-TCC students and senior citizens and free for TCC faculty, staff and students. For reservations, call 817-515-3599.

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