The new version of Bliss, based on Peter Carey’s novel of the same name, follows in the footsteps of Eurydice, Alcestis, and the grand tradition of Greek mythology where on returning from the dead brings its own complications.

Life seems to be an interesting dilemma for main character Harry Joy who, after suffering a heart attack, returns from the dead to find that his near-death experience poses a vexing question – has he descended into hell or has he simply returned to hell on earth? Either way Harry decides that he desperately needs to change his life and embarks on a rollercoaster ride to find ‘true redemption’.

In the complexities of this black comedy and through Harry’s new vision of the world, it is revealed that Harry’s wife is unfaithful, his self-indulgent daughter trades sex for hard drugs with his deviant son, and his latest client is a carcinogenic polluter.

With this new awareness that reality is identical with divinity, Harry seeks his own redemption and moves into a hotel where he meets the eponymous “Honey” Barbara, who prostitutes herself and helps a friend sell marijuana on trips to the city to bring money back toa forest commune.

Dark in topic but confronting in its manner, the viewer asks, can this grim tale of Harry’s quest for salvation have a happy ending, or like the Greek tragedies - will the perverse ‘will of the gods’ prevail?

To follow Harry’s reincarnation and his journey from suburbia to the rainforest and beyond, book your tickets now to see this award-winning Peter Carey novel transformed for the stage by Tom Wright and directed by Matthew Lutton.

The play is performed at the Merlyn Theatre, The Coopers’ Malthouse. It stars Toby Truslove (ABC’s Utopia) supported by a stellar ensemble cast including Marco Chiappi, Will McDonald, Amber McMahon, Charlotte Nicdao, Susan Prior, Anna Samson, and Mark Coles Smith.


Peter Carey’s Bliss

Location: Merlyn Theatre, The Coopers’ Malthouse (113 Sturt Street, Southbank)

Dates: 4 May - 2 June 2018

Times: See website for specific session times

Malthouse Theatre Website

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