PRIZE FIGHTER - BELVOIR MEDIA RELEASE
When Prize Fighter opened in Brisbane in 2015, The Australian said ‘Umm, did that just happen? Could it be that Brisbane has just witnessed the world premiere of the most perfectly structured, brilliantly produced and best-acted new play seen in this town in, well, living memory probably?’ and Belvoir and Sydney Festival are thrilled to bring this powerful new Australian story to Sydney.
Future D. Fidel’s Prize Fighter tells a story similar to his own, of Isa, a Congolese boy who comes to Australia as a refugee escaping a brutal civil war and unspeakable horrors. Settling in Brisbane, he finds a passion and discipline in boxing.
In this inventive and physical production the theatre becomes a boxing ring. As Isa fights for the title, he must battle his past as much as his opponent in this ultimately profoundly uplifting play.
‘The results of war in Congo created hundreds of child soldiers and a high level of rapes of young and old woman,’ explains Fidel. ‘Prize Fighter is a mythical story inspired by personal experiences of these wars that resonates around trauma from family loss and motivations from the Congo. The reason of the story is not to give you statistics but to outline the reality of what is not being shown, through the power of boxing. Defeating your opponent needs strategies but defeating your memories requires more than just that. Regardless of who or what your opponent is, everyone is a Prize Fighter.’
Pacharo Mzembe (Gwen in Purgatory) returns to Belvoir as Isa, in this production which was nominated for Best Play and Best New Australian Work at the 2016 Helpmann Awards.