World premiere of Lemony S Puppet Theatre’s Taking the Waters

Inspired by real-life experiences, Taking the Waters explores what it is to be a carer and how this role can bring out the very best and the very worst of a person, simultaneously.

Photo by Sarah Walker

Three sisters gather together after many years apart. One of them is dying. In this complex world, old patterns of behaviour play out, old wounds are re-exposed and ultimately, a new reality where three becomes two must be found. The world premiere of Taking the Waters combines live performance, sung voice, bunraku puppets and object theatre with stunning and multi-layered shadow scenes to tell the complex story and emotional experience of being a carer for the dying.

Created in collaboration with internationally celebrated visual artist Kyoko Imazu, singer-songwriter Suzannah Espie and Lemony S Puppet Theatre, Taking the Waters is a visually stunning, aching and humorous examination of the intricacies of life and death.

Lemony S Puppet Theatre is a small, Green Room Award winning independent theatre company based in Melbourne. With over 20 years theatre experience between creators Sarah Kriegler and Jacob Williams the company use puppetry to disarm the audience and go deep to the core of what it is to be human – to attach meaning to symbols and signs, to empathise and access the innate human ability to “suspend one’s disbelief”.

Kyoko Imazu is a Japanese print artist based in Melbourne, whose practice encompasses a range of mediums such as printmaking, puppetry and installation, bookbinding and ceramics. Drawing small animals and strange creatures from Japanese folklore is one of her earliest and most important memories from her childhood and it has continued to play vital roles in her art practice. Her works take audience to secret hiding spots unveiling her childhood memories and imagination. Her characters and visual stories evoke many states of life, death and regeneration.

Suzannah Espie is a Melbourne-based singer songwriter. She began performing with her alt-country pop band, GIT, in 1997. With a voice marrying country, soul, blues and pop, she has performed on albums by artists ranging from Mick Thomas, Jeff Lang and Matt Walker to Liz Stringer and Barb Waters. She also performs with Sarah Carroll in country outfits the Cartridge Family and the Junes, and she has released three solo albums: A Few More Days (2005), First and Last Hotel (2009) Sea Of Lights (2012) and most recently Mother’s Not Feeling Herself Today (2015).

Espie earned one of the biggest accolades of her career when the Port Fairy Folk Festival named her the 2013 Port Fairy Maton Artist of the Year – joining an honour roll including luminaries such as John Butler, Archie Roach, the Waifs and Mick Thomas.

Darebin Arts Speakeasy presents Taking the Waters | 20 November – 30 November 2019
Northcote Town Hall Arts Centre

For tickets and more information please visit the Darebin Arts website.

Gabi Bergman

Gabi Bergman is a Melbourne-based performer and educator, and is the current Deputy Editor-in-Chief of She holds a Double Arts degree in Theatre Studies and Film/Screen Studies and a Master of Teaching (Secondary Education). Gabi has always been an avid lover of theatre, specifically musicals, and spends way too much money than she’d like to admit on tickets. Her most prized possession is her crate of theatre programs.

Gabi Bergman

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