”If men aren't drowned," Mermaid asked, "do they live on forever?"

Mermaid X

Sally Richardson


Mermaid X explores contemporary Australian experiences of being a ‘fish out of water’. Inspired by the dark allegorical fable of Hans Christian Anderson’s The Little Mermaid, in this contemporary reimagining the mermaid is male. Played by Kynan Hughes, ‘Blue’ dreams of becoming human. Yearning to experience a love like no other, his obsession builds. To achieve this heart’s desire he must walk on land and receive an immortal soul. Arriving, he finds he has sacrificed his identity for the sake of an ideal – an ideal that no longer ‘exists’.

Mermaid X recasts this classic journey alongside contemporary texts, fictional and real, of self-sacrifice in search of the unattainable. A contemporary parallel thread today is the story of asylum seekers’ irrevocable departures from their homes and lives. Their one way passage bought from those who traffic in human hope, and the subsequent, often extreme, experience of journey and arrival, is reimagined in this evocative new physical performance work.


Director/ Devisor Sally Richardson
Production Design Trent Suidgueest
Performers Kynan Hughes, Natalie Allen, Daniel Powers
Assistant Director/ Composer/ Musician Joe Lui
Producer Performing Lines WA