🥾 My Sister Jill by Patricia Cornelius

An expertly crafted and sharp critique of the machinery of war

🥾 My Sister Jill by Patricia Cornelius
Image: Ryan Hamilton

Initially I resisted booking tickets to see My Sister Jill because the marketing made it seem to be kitschy white Australiana—with no relevance to the now, but boy was I pleasantly surprised

The story begins post WW2 and follows a young family in Melbourne’s suburbs. Dad is traumatised from the war, and that echoes in the family dynamics. 

Of course eventually, all of the kids are grown and war has broken out in Vietnam. The tension between conscripted children, protestors, and parents was a stunning examination of the familial trauma of war 

The acting was phenomenal, the script was excellently crafted, blocking was sumptuous, and while the set felt a little basic it was used very well. 

Altogether it was an expertly crafted and sharp critique of the machinery of war, especially in how it affects children.

Obviously a story like this is incredibly relevant to what’s happening now in the world, and I was just left feeling disappointed that that value wasn’t communicated beforehand. 

I think there’s a broader conversation to be had about the way that main stage companies market their shows, and the way they seem to avoid emphasising the political and social relevance of their programming. 

But I’m cautiously optimistic for MTC, season 2024 looks to be excellent and I’m excited to see how it will play out.