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By Lucy Kirkwood

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About the event

Can sisterly love survive the chaos of the universe?

The Australian premiere of this international hit is a spellbinding tale of sibling rivalry set against a backdrop of scientific discovery. Alice (Jacqueline McKenzie) is a scientist working towards an important new discovery. Jenny (Mandy McElhinney) is her sister, and believes any conspiracy she reads on the internet. They couldn’t be more different. So, when tragedy forces them together, the impact has unexpected consequences.

It’s 2008 and Alice’s team of physicists at the Large Hadron Collider are searching for the Higgs Boson, stitching together the fabric of the cosmos. But at home, Alice’s family is falling apart at the seams. Mosquitoes is a story of facts and feelings that reaches to the edges of time and space without ever losing touch with its very human heart.

The Guardian said “Lucy Kirkwood has proved that she is a dramatist of dauntless ambition. She pushes the boat out even further with her new play [Mosquitoes].” Likewise, Australian audiences raved about STC’s acclaimed productions of Kirkwood’s intelligent, affecting and ambitious work; Chimerica in 2017 and The Children in 2018. Mosquitoes is perhaps her best yet – a perfectly focused family drama woven together with big questions about the universe and our very existence. This moving and witty story “tackles giant themes with a swaggering showmanship” (The Telegraph, UK).

Two of Australia’s most beloved screen and theatre actors, Mandy McElhinney (Channel 9’s Love Child and Bad Mothers, ABC’s Paper Giants) and Jacqueline McKenzie (The Present, Orlando) come together as the sisters at the centre of the story, with the award-winning Annie Byron (Hedda Gabler) as their mother.

STC’s Resident Director Jessica Arthur (Lethal Indifference) leads this Australian premiere production. The superb cast includes STC favourites Jason Chong (Chimerica) and Charles Wu (Chimerica, Channel 9’s Doctor Doctor).

"Witness two exceptional performances and a playwright knocking on the door of brilliance"


"A thrilling emotional ride, cranked to maximum tension by fabulous performances from all on stage"


"★★★★ Mandy McElhinney is outstanding ... Jacqueline McKenzie is excellent... and the two are terrific across the spectrum of their relationship."


"[Mandy] McElhinney wrings every laugh from Kirkwood’s spiky dialogue"


"★★★★ Mosquitoes combines the epic sweep of Chimerica with the depth of characterisation of The Children and makes one fascinated to see what Kirkwood comes up with next."


"Director Jessica Arthur brings excellent amplification to personal emotions for the characters we meet."


"Seeking compassion and care along with understanding that people are different and that just because someone may not be book smart does not mean that we should treat them with any less humanity, this is a contemporary human story, relatable regardless of your own family circumstances."


"★★★★ Lucy Kirkwood has proved, with Chimerica and The Children, that she is a dramatist of dauntless ambition. She pushes the boat out even further with her new play."


"★★★★ [A] characteristically bold and wide-ranging new play."


"★★★★ Lucy Kirkwood is a playwright who tackles giant themes with a swaggering showmanship."