Rising Water by Tim Winton

  • -
  • Heath Ledger Theatre

About the Play

Only loosely tethered to shore but never ready to set sail, Col, Baxter and Jackie have made a jumble of boats in a Fremantle marina their barely floating homes.

It’s Australia Day, and as the city noisily celebrates around them, they just want to hole up and be left in peace. When Dee, a young English backpacker, stumbles upon them with far too much anger and alcohol in her belly, she well and truly rocks their boats, and the past they want to escape from gets dragged up like jetsam from the sea.

Tim Winton is a four time Miles Franklin Award winner and was shortlisted twice for the Man Booker Prize for Fiction. Rising Water is full of the compassion and larrikin humour that are the trademark of Winton’s work, chronicling the lives of outsiders and fringe-dwellers in his unmistakably (West) Australian voice.

“As I devoured the pages of Tim’s debut play, I found myself laughing one minute, weeping the next. I could not wait to see his rich and textured characters brought to life on stage. Who better to do that than the legendary John Howard (Packed to the Rafters, All Saints) and Western Australia’s own Geoff Kelso, accompanied in their verbal stoushing by 2010 Helpmann Award winner Alison Whyte?” Kate Cherry


Production images

Cast & Creatives

Cast includes: Stuart Halusz, John Howard, Geoff Kelso, Claire Lovering, Alison Whyte

Director: Kate Cherry

Set & Costume Designer: Christina Smith Lighting Designer: Matt Scott Sound Designer/Composer: Iain Grandage


"...Christina Smith's gently rocking boats so realistic they looked ready to head up the coast...Matt Scott's gorgeous lighting and Iain Grandage's sunny soundscape helping to capture Winton's famous sense of place." The West Australian

"Winton's capacity to write stirring, fluent theatre dialogue shines through...Rising Water charts new territory: every word is pure Winton, not an adaptation by others of his novels. For that alone the play is worth seeing." The Australian

"Rising Water has quality oozing from every porthole. It is a thought-provoking, intriguing piece of theatre that requires effort on both sides of the footlights – but then the best plays always do." Perth Now

Download programme