STARING INTO THE NETHER – Peter Maple chats with director, Justin Martin.

The Underbelly. The Dark Side. What lurks beneath – our hearts and minds…
Identity. The Digital World. Dreams. Reality. Crime!
just a few of the things submerged within and turning and surfacing in The Nether…

You’ve worked across numerous mediums, and in various roles, is there any one of those ‘identities’ you more closely associate with yourself?

I love the intersection of ideas and people. And when I started out, theatre became the gateway through which I could engage with both. Different ideas require different mediums to fully explore them.

I think if anything, the unifying association I have for myself through all my work is that of a craftsman. I’m kind of an enabler really – who is lucky enough to work with amazing artists and ideas, and I get to find ways of fitting them all together.

Is there an ‘identity’ then that the industry or public more closely associate you with? And is that ever at odds with how you see yourself? If so, how do you deal with or combat that?

I’ve come up through the associate route, which is another way of saying I’ve been lucky enough to be an apprentice to some of the world’s top directors. That has been both a blessing and a curse.

I’ve always tried to balance that route with my own work, but it has meant that in certain circles I’m viewed as a director, and in others more of an associate director.

We very much live in a physical AND digital realm these days – the ‘digital realm’ only growing stronger and stronger, and wider and wider – with greater and greater effect.

Is it becoming harder for us to have ‘ownership’ of our own identity? How might we be able to stay ‘truer’ to ourselves and really ‘know’ ourselves, when we’re constantly flooded with ever-changing influences and opinions and advertising and products…?

It’s a tricky question! But I think the answer lies in the ways we expose the next generation to the technology.

I grew up pre- the digital explosion. And so, my experience and identity was formed in the ‘real world’. That experience gives a certain amount of context to me for my identity and sense of morality.

I feel that, yes, while the digital world might give us the means to live beyond the limits of the real world, it is the experience of the real world that most definitely contextualises that.

What drew you to this project (out of the many choices at play for you)?

I tend to be attracted to stories that seem to be plugging into conversations beyond the arts pages.

I originally saw The Nether in London, and felt it threw up questions and emotions in me that I hadn’t thought or felt before. “How do I be a true person in the digital age? How do we find a legal frame work within a virtual world? How far should the authorities be allowed to go in terms of its censorship of the internet and collection of our personal lives? What is morality in a virtual world where there isn’t a physical effect in the real world?”

It had so much to say and question. I think it’s also a beautifully written play that keeps you on edge, guessing all throughout.

Not only are we dealing with a social commentary here with The Nether, we are also entertainingly engaged in the genre storytelling world of a Crime Thriller.

Is this a genre that appeals to you personally?

It is. Yes! The play itself is always ahead of you – and without making you feel out of touch – and I think for an audience that is incredibly exciting. And the play is balanced with a series of love stories, which are both very human, and wonderfully complex.

Are there many difficulties involved in translating such a well-known screen genre (in that of the Crime Thriller) to stage?

The stage does it differently. And because it’s live – it’s all the more thrilling!
We are obviously using language, rather than image, to create tension here.

What can audiences expect to experience from The Nether?

A high-speed rollercoaster that excites, engages, and questions.
It’ll make you think, question, and feel.
I’m never one to deny an audience entertainment. And we wholeheartedly embrace that throughout the show.

What do you hope an audience will walk away with most from their Nether experience?

A visceral experience, and, most importantly, a pertinent conversation.
I find the story at times very moving.

What’s next for you – which identity?

Directing – a play called The Jungle, at the Young Vic in London.
It’s a brilliant play about the temporary refugee migrant camp that existed in Calais in 2015/2016.

Who are you?

At simple best: I’m Justin Martin. A theatre, tv, and film director.

Photo: Justin Martin with The Nether cast member Alec Snow.

Monologue – Female, 30s.


(Looking out. Ahead)

So I told him: come pick up your gear – come pick up your shit. I don’t care…

(Looks to person listening for their response, then back to her view of the skyline)

And I packed it all – all his worthless junk – all his worthless shit.

After all the time we’d spent together, all his crap fit into two bags – two bags.


And then they sat there – for days – those god dam bags just sat in the hall for days, waiting…

Which only infuriated me more.

I wanted it over with, you know. I wanted it finished.

…He even managed draw out that process as well…

Then he turns up, five days later, five days late. I hand him his bags. No words. None from me. None from him.

He takes his bags, he stands there, he opens his mouth to speak – and there I am, on top of him. My mouth on top of his. My body on top of his.

It’s the… familiarity.
He’s familiar.
His smell – his scent.

Breathing him in – it’s like taking a big hit of ‘comfort’.

‘Comfort’ just filling your lungs – feeding your veins…

And there I go. I fuck him.
I make love to him…?

I hate him. I fuck him. I fuck him. I hate him.

And it’s the same old familiar ride.
Nothing different. Nothing special.
Nothing changes…


He leaves. I’m left.


And his bags are left.

His bags are left – they sit there in the hall.
They’re still sitting there in the fucking hall.
He hasn’t come back. I haven’t touched them.
They just wait, there


I’m glad he’s gone. I hate him.
I do.
‘Hated him for a long time.


Problem is: now I think I hate myself a little bit too…

And I’ll tell you, it’s a pretty pointless fucking emotion – hate, hatred, hating yourself…
There’s not much you can do with that.

(Taking in the view – really absorbing what’s ahead)

God… It’s beautiful out here, isn’t it…?
We really do live with such a beauty…


ipsum lorem etc. ipsum lorem etc. ipsum lorem etc. ipsum lorem etc.

Creative Commons License

Fresh, Original, RAW – Peter Maple talks to Liliana Muñoz

-We acknowledge and respect the Traditional Owners and Custodians of the Lands on which we live and work and pay respect to the Elders past and present-

“RAW invites Indigenous creatives to submit original concepts for a chance to have it turned into Australia’s next online breakout series. Up to three creator/writers go on as finalists to pitch their concept to the RAW team. One concept goes through to pilot-making phase, which includes a budget up to $60,000 to shoot the pilot episode.
This final concept is in with the potential opportunity to be considered for a first-look series commissioning offer from ABC Indigenous.”

In Partnership with AFTRS, ABC TV Indigenous, and Executive Producers Leah Purcell & Wayne Blair, Artology presents this new Story-developing, Artist-developing, Industry-developing initiative, RAW.

Artology is involved in developing the creative potential of young people through experiential learning in the arts, connecting with thousands of students and schools across Australia. Today we chat with Artology’s Creative Producer for RAW, Liliana Muñoz:

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DEAD SUNRISE – the little, psychological, family drama, zombie, horror film with heart, that could!

A feature film made from the bare minimum of resources and funds – a feature film made from the peak maximum of passion, drive, abandon, and determination – continues to keep rolling on, from (international) festival to (international) festival – garnering screenings, attention, nominations, and collecting awards.
A unique and unusual beast of a film that continues to weave its growing history, events, and achievements into successful narrative string…

Check out and follow the DEAD SUNRISE story here:

FILM – War and Crime; Crime and War – HIGH STAKES DRAMA for sure.

Genre films like the war film and the detective mystery – can be so strong and effective it seems. Many quality films have been born out of these ‘landscapes’.
They tend to be so very Tight, Vigorous, and Bold. So very engaging.
(Not that I’m advocating war, nor crime…)
But – creatively – in the World Of Storytelling – why do they often work so powerfully and enthrall…?
To me – it is the Contexts of these Worlds that are so very Clear and Precise. They are Easy To Understand (whether the Plot or Narrative within is more complex or not).
-Life and Death. Crime and Perpetrator. Friend or Foe. Enemy or Comrade. Guilty or Innocent. Live or Die. ‘Win’ or ‘Lose’…, etc-
Without a doubt – the Stakes ARE HIGH.
And as an ‘audience’, we can cleanly and simply recognise what’s to Gain or Lose.
Perhaps The Contexts of such clear-cut Frameworks and acutely defined Borders and/or Lines, therefore allows us as an audience an ‘ease’ and Access to Immediately Invest and Engage with the Content (however convoluted, perplexing, puzzling – or repelling and repulsing – it may be…).
Anyway, just something that had crossed my mind…

Tony Bosworth, writing in the Parramatta Advertiser

Parramatta Advertiser
Tony Bosworth 7 Dec 2016

Peter Maple.

EVERYONE has a story to tell, says Rosehill actor, playwright and author Peter Maple, who is encouraging Australians to tell more of their own stories.

“We need to be generating and telling more new Australian stories on a more regular basis,” he said.

Mr Maple is studying a Master of Fine Arts in Writing for Performance at NIDA and is a married father to Angus, 7, and two-year-old Maggie.

“I make up stories for them and read to them in the evening and they tell me about their day but I encourage them to tell it to me in story form. I think it definitely activates their imagination and drives that creativity within them and more people should do it.”

The actor has worked across films, TV, theatre, prose, and devised works, as a writer, actor and director and is currently writing an as yet-unnamed stage play dealing with violence and trauma.

“With my writing I am really trying to create a visceral, evocative experience for the reader. It’s emotional, not so much narrative based, rather experiential,” he said.

Baking More Food For Your Thoughts. Peter Maple Talks with Director Suzanne Millar – TALKING ARTS

As is custom in the bAKEHOUSE Theatre kitchen, the Company are continuing to cook up new and fresh, and relevant and diverse meals of entertainment – to tantalise the appetites, for the social, the political, the theatrical. Step inside the workings of this provocative storytelling cookery with director Suzanne Millar as they prepare to serve up their next cathartic feast, Jatinga.

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