With intelligence, well-judged humour and the searching qualities of truly memorable theatre

Sydney Morning Herald on Who’s Afraid of the Working Class

The long-awaited follow-up to one of Australian theatre’s most acclaimed collaborations asks a bold question: does Australia share a dream and do we really sing with one voice? 

Twenty-one years ago four playwrights and a composer came together to create Who’s Afraid of the Working Class?, a series of powerful interwoven vignettes that captured the zeitgeist of Melbourne and Australia in the 1990s. Now the same team reunite to take the pulse of our nation today, with director Susie Dee and an extraordinary ensemble of performers. 

What emerges is a funny and ferocious portrait of a country unable to reconcile its past, uncertain of its future and political vision. The colliding voices that make up this anthem might not always be in harmony, but they cannot be silenced. 

Who’s Afraid of the Working Class? was an ode to tiny struggles writ large; Anthem turns up the volume on the everyday injustices we choose not to hear.


Andrew Bovell
Patricia Cornelius
Melissa Reeves
Christos Tsiolkas

Irine Vela

Susie Dee

Marg Horwell

Lighting Designer
Paul Jackson

Music Director and Sound Designer
Irine Vela

Movement Consultant
Natalie Cursio

Assistant Director
Sapidah Kian

Aboriginal Cultural Dramaturg
Bryan Andy

Maude Davey
Reef Ireland
Ruthy Kaisila
Thuso Lekwape
Amanda Ma
Maria Mercedes
Tony Nikolakopoulos
Eryn Jean Norvill
Sahil Saluja
Osamah Sami
Eva Seymour
Carly Sheppard
Jenny M. Thomas
Dan Witton 

Produced by Performing Lines in association with Arts Centre Melbourne.

Presented by Melbourne International Arts Festival and Arts Centre Melbourne.

Initiated by Arts Centre Melbourne.

Information for Presenters

This production is available for presentation from 2020 and beyond.

Annette Vieusseux Producer
Marion Potts Executive Producer

Presentation History

Melbourne International Arts Festival, Arts Centre Melbourne
Melbourne, VIC

Project Partners & Acknowledgements

Anthem was initiated by Arts Centre Melbourne and has been produced by Performing Lines in association with Arts Centre Melbourne. Script commissioned by Arts Centre Melbourne. Anthem is presented by Melbourne International Arts Festival and Arts Centre Melbourne.

This project has been assisted by the Australian Government’s Major Festivals Initiative, managed by the Australia Council, its arts funding and advisory body, in association with the Confederation of Australian International Arts Festivals Inc., commissioned by Melbourne International Arts Festival, Arts Centre Melbourne, Sydney Festival and Perth Festival. 

In everything we do, we acknowledge that we live on Aboriginal land and constantly learn from the wisdom of our First Peoples.

Where we are and the history that precedes us informs how we work and how we move forward.