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A Kind of Belgium


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“I feel like a kind of Belgium, y’ know. Always invaded. They’ve set up their trenches and wires and they take it in turns to rush over the top and try and put a flag in me. I’m getting loved to exhaustion.”

Would you sit on a fence and watch an invasion take place? Right on your doorstep? When both the invaded and the invader were close to you? Ray Rance (a real estate agent), Leo Crowshaw (a restaurant proprietor) and Lynne Fleming (a hair salon operator) work in a shopping precinct that’s been hit hard by financial downturn but is set to enjoy a recovery as a boutique tourist area.

A property acquisition is about to take place. Jodie Crowshaw, Leo’s daughter, stumbles on to hidden dealings and must confront family and friends to pursue what she believes is just and right.

The story is seen through the eyes of Kane Boon, a street spirit, who was killed in the act of a robbery. His spirit is tied to a place which is about to be besieged and in defence of this space, he seeks to redeem his family name.

“A Kind Of Belgium” was first presented by La Boite Theatre Inc in association with their Springboards 2000 program at La Boite Theatre, Hale Street, Brisbane, on 17 July, 2000.

Interview with the Author

Q - Why should I read a stage play?

A – I think a good story is a good story. I try to reach out on an emotional level. Most people find it engaging and easy to read. And a play is just a movie in your mind.

Q – What inspired you to write A Kind of Belgium?

A – Like my other plays, Goodbye Melaleuca, The Captains and The Kings, Sylvia Terry and even Spades, I am fascinated by the dynamics within the family. This work is primarily about a father who has gone through a bitter divorce and his relationship with his daughter. It involves drama, humour, conflict, betrayal, guilt and ultimately love.

Whenever I would mix with other writers they would always say, “You do realize that there’s a Harold Pinter play called “A Kind of Alaska”?” To which I reply, “Yes, but Alaska was never invaded like Belgium.” This play deals with the whole politics of invasion. It’s a case of, you are trying to wipe out friends so you can never really show your true intensions.

It was such a joy to see this played at La Boite Theatre, Brisbane in 2000. The whole adventure was made worthwhile by one comment at the end made a member of the audience. “At last. It’s just so good to get a story.”

Q – So, why should readers give this book a try?

A – It’s just a good story.

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