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The Second Woman

Nat Randall (NSW)

Presented in association with ACMI

#nextwave16 #thesecondwoman


20-21 May


ACMI, Federation Square, Flinders St, Melbourne


1pm–1pm (continuous)




24 hours


  • assistive-listening
  • audio-notes
  • auslan
  • wheelchair - Copy

Auslan intepretation Fri 20 May 3:30pm-5pm, Audio notes available in mid-May


May contain coarse language, nudity and adult themes

Event Details

A slow-burning revelation of performance art.


Nat Randall (Team MESS, Hissy Fit) throws herself into a strange loop of framing and spectacle in this 24-hour performance and cinema experiment. As Randall repeatedly performs a single scene inspired by John Cassavetes’ cult film Opening Night, on-stage sparks fly. Starring opposite Randall are 100 different men ranging in age, background and acting ability. Through this repeated performative exchange, Randall aims to explore the trade of emotion, intimacy, chemistry and authenticity.

Randall plays the role of silver screen actress Gena Rowlands, co-star and real-life spouse of Opening Night director John Cassavetes. Performing a single scene inspired by Rowlands’ original award-winning portrayal of Myrtle Gordon, an ageing theatre star on the brink of self-destruction, Randall takes elements of Cassavetes’ signature style and rewires them through live performance and simulcasts. Randall twists the auteur’s legacy for her own purposes – cutting across layered realities, smudging the line between acting and being, attempting to discover a space of enduring intimacy, en masse. Come for an hour, stay for the night – this is performance at its most epic, a complex game of fiction and reality.

*Nat is looking for diverse male participants to be part of The Second Woman. Read more.

  • Creator and Performer
    Nat Randall
  • Script and Direction
    Anna Breckon and Nat Randall
  • Lead Camera
    Emily O'Connor
  • Video and Lighting
    Anna Breckon and Emily O’Connor
  • Production Manager and Participant Engagement
    Jade Muratore
  • Sound Composition
    Nina Buchanan
  • Set Design
    FUTURE METHOD/Genevieve Murray
  • Hair Artist
    Sophie Roberts
  • Makeup Artist
    Anastasia Zaravinos
  • Outside Eye
    Adena Jacobs
  • Image
    Kate Blackmore

This project has been assisted by the Australian Government through the Australia Council, its arts funding and advisory body, and the NSW Government through Arts NSW.