The Aspirations of Daise Morrow is a word for word adaptation of Patrick White’s 1964 short story, Down at the Dump. It focuses on timeless themes of community, families, love and death.

The audience sits in-the-round on burnt earth underneath an Australian sky, while the actors swap deftly between characters, moving through the audience, bringing them into the story. The music of Zephyr Quartet weaves in and out of the words, filling the communal space. Both brutally funny and profound, The Aspirations of Daise Morrow is an authentically Australian story.

Set in the fictional suburb of Barranugli, the Whalley family are getting ready for a day at the dump while next door the Hogben’s prepare for the funeral of the scandalous Daise Morrow. Meg, Daise's niece, and Lum, the oldest Whalley boy, meet in the dump, separated from the cemetery only by a strand of barbed wire.

Venue Format
Hall, Black Box Venue
Technical Rating
Touring Party
4 to 8 artists (depending on inclusion of the musical quartet); 2 crew

The budget has been constructed based on touring 4 performers and 4 musicians. If venues opt to use lawn on the floor, per the original premiere season, this will be an additional cost. Note that it may also be possible to tour with the music pre-recorded.

20m x 20m audience/playing area Audience seating provided 20m x 20m of lawn underlined with builders plastic

Brink lifts the art of collaboration to new heights in its pursuit of a new theatrical poetry. Brink attracts major artists from across disciplines and across the world, all drawn to the company for its unique way of bringing together multiple visions in a singular act of shared discovery. The resulting hallmarks of Brink’s shows are a particular blend of empathetic storytelling, theatrical invention, rich visuals, deep musicality and the highest standards of acting.

The considerable ambition driving Brink’s vision is to create contemporary allegories that converse with the most profound and urgent issues of the day in order to reawaken in our community a shared sense of the universal human experience, and to provoke a more robustly compassionate society.

Presented by most major Australian theatre companies. Brink’s shows have received widespread acclaim including the multi-award winning productions When the Rain Stops Falling, Thursday and The Aspirations of Daise Morrow which are attracting fresh attention around the world.

Brink’s patron is Robyn Archer AO.

Brink: the art of storytelling

Company Website

Unique Selling Point

This is an intimate performance, where the audience is closely engaged with the actors, the words and the music at all times. The Zephyr Quartet sits and plays with the audience who are seated in-the-round, and the actors move in and throughout the rows of seats. The audience feels part of a community, looking at each other and the performers. By using Patrick White’s words, this production is able to give people a way in to literature, even if they don’t usually engage with reading. This is storytelling, not drama, an informal and warm experience for the audience.

Marketing Materials

Teachers' notes, marketing collateral (posters, flyers, program from Adelaide season, artwork), production shots, production footage available by end of November, script, CDs of music, rave reviews, Patrick White's short story 'Down at the Dump'.

Community Engagement

About small communities in suburban/regional Australia this play is as reflection of a bygone era but staged in a contemporary performance installation that promotes a conversation across generations.

We have found that it has promoted significant post-show discussions between audience members, a feeling of togetherness heightened by the communal staging (in-the-round, looking at each other under the same sky, the cast moving around the audience who then become part of the performance), and this feeling stays with you long after the show has finished.