Powerful drama with message about child abuse

By Shepparton News

A production with a powerful message will be staged in Shepparton later this week.

The play The Truth is Longer than a Lie, written by award-winning playwright Kieran Carroll, focuses on real experiences of children in situations of child abuse and neglect, and the systems designed to protect them.

Mr Carroll said the play was based on a 2006 non-fiction book by Neerosh Mudaly and Chris Goddard which investigated child abuse and professional interventions.

He said from the book he had focused on two different cases where children had experienced contrasting home lives, yet both were victims of child abuse.

Mr Carroll said the play was first performed in 2015 by Type Faster Productions and had since been performed across Victoria.

‘‘When we did it in Swan Hill the police approached us and said they wanted to try to bring the play into their high school because it would help some kids break their silence.’’

He said although the play’s focus was a heavy topic, he hoped the message would be conveyed in a way that could make a difference.

‘‘It’s one of those plays where the material is difficult for people to watch sometimes but we hope that the messages that come across are worth it.’’

Mr Carroll said he had been pleased with feedback from audience members who said the play had helped them to move on and break silences about their own lives.

He said the play would be performed in Shepparton as part of a Victorian Government initiative regional tour that had been commissioned by Monash University, Frankston.

Mr Carroll encouraged the people of the Goulburn Valley to get along and see awareness raised around child abuse.

Following the play, audience members will have the opportunity to take part in a forum which will include a panel of people from the Shepparton area.

The Truth is Longer than a Lie will be performed at the Elsie Jones Education Centre, Graham St, Shepparton, on Friday, November 30, at 10am in Room 2. The play will also be performed in Seymour on the same day from 2.30pm at Seymour Health’s Community Services Building in the Education Room, Bretonneux St, Seymour.