It’s a huge drama – literally. Crash Test Drama Melbourne (CTDM) brings together theatre enthusiasts, from playwrights to actors to directors.
The whole idea is to 'crash test' new ten-minute theatre scripts (and this year film scripts too) from writers who have submitted their work during the year. Actors and directors are cast on the day, given two hours to rehearse, then perform in front of a live audience and a panel of industry judges. Talk about pressure.
Previous Crash Tests have opened massive doors for many up-and-comers; plays have made into films, like Matt O'Reilly's Lost in Ringwood, which was a finalist at Tropfest – the biggest short film festival in the world. Actors involved in previous years have been cast in productions by award winning company Mockingbird Theatre and big screen films including Wolf Creek.
As of May, there's one CTDM event a month, for six consecutive months. The event costs $10 on the door for all participants – audience/actors/directors/writers – with all money raised going to the winning and runner-up plays, as voted by the audience on the day. Of course, the writers may wind up spending it at the networking bash at the Dog's Bar afterwards...