Rachel Pengilly

The 2020 Production Team. Image Credits: Hannah Pengilly

Rachel Pengilly

Artist Residency

23 April – 3 May 2021

Professional theatre and film practitioner Rachel Pengilly will be working in the Rehersal Room at Belconnen Arts Centre during her artist residency to continue to develop her original new work, Legacies. Legacies‘ second development will be directed by Christopher Samuel Carroll, award-winning performer and theatremaker. The project is produced by Ribix Productions and proudly supported by Belco Arts.

About Legacies

Legacies is an original stage play by Rachel Pengilly, with original music composition by Shannon Parnell. Based on the true story of the Arran Stowaways, Legacies follows the journey of six young boys stowed away on a ship from Scotland to Canada. It’s a classic adventure tale – with a deadly, icy twist. Amongst the themes of friendship and bravery, the play also explores the idea of a legacy: what it means to carry on remnants of your family and how your seemingly-ordinary actions can shape your own legacy.

The story opens in 1868, on board the Arran, a ship bound from Scotland to Canada. The kindness and warmth of the captain well-known, the ship is infested with stowaways. Though many are found and put ashore, six remain hidden until the ship enters open waters. These six boys, ranging in ages from 11 to 16, are immediately put to work with the crew and their tale of adventure begins. It is not without its hardships, as the first mate of the ship is nasty and seeks to thwart them at every turn. Conflict comes to a sharp point as the ship enters the icy waters off the coast of Novia Scotia and becomes stuck in the ice flows. Convincing the Captain that this is the best option considering provisions for the rest of the crew, the first mate banishes the young stowaways from the ship and forces them off onto the ice flows. Abandoned on ice in the middle of the Atlantic, the boys are faced with an impossible choice: walk twelve miles over treacherous ice to the isolated coast of Novia Scotia or freeze to death.

A cast of ten tell this incredible story, utilising music, physical theatre and words lifted verbatim from newspapers and court documents. Legacies is produced by Ribix Productions.

Learn more about Rachel Pengilly and Ribix Productions at: ribixproductions.com.au