No direction home

While there was a positive reaction to the City of Sydney’s alternative take on the government’s “preferred option” for the redevelopment of the Waterloo estate, the plight of vulnerable residents remains unchanged. They will still have to pack up their household and move to new and as yet unknown accommodation whatever plan is put into action.

Photo: Andrew Collis Caption: Anna North and Pauline Trenerry at 107 Projects

Interim, a work in progress shown at 107 Projects, Redfern on May 1, investigates residents’ personal connections to Waterloo and their feelings of uncertainty about the future redevelopment of a place most regard as home.

Creatively led by Milk Crate Theatre developing artists Georgina Wood and Pauline Trenerry, devised and performed by residents Anna North and Karyn Brown, with the assistance of Counterpoint personnel May Dore and Adam Antonelli, and directed by James Dalton, Interim effectively seeks to expose the injustice at the heart of the Waterloo redevelopment.

By presenting little scenarios the ensemble takes us through the difficulty of obtaining social housing, the often patronising culture within Housing NSW and the depressing prospect of having to move from a home in which personal identity is heavily invested. As much of our thinking is about what we will do next, residents’ uncertainty about when and where undermines their ability to envisage a future for themselves.

Despite its seriousness as social comment, Interim is often very funny, especially Anna North’s attempts to quell noisy neighbours, and fittingly, it concludes on-screen with a short walking tour of the place she knows and loves by Karyn Brown.

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