Crunch Time As Noosa Comes ALIVE!

Image source: Contributed

It’s Crunch Time for David Williamson as the stage is set for a major prelude to this year’s NOOSA alive! Helen Flanagan discovers a program packed with culture.

UPDATE: THIS EVENT HAS NOW BEEN CANCELLED DUE TO COVID-19 (Coronavirus). For updates on refunds or reschedule information, please contact

Noosa’s homage to cultural diversity in arts and entertainment is a 10-day tapestry of riotous colour and food for thought covering dance, music, literature, theatre, visual arts, film, cabaret, comedy and more! In its 18th year, the bar is certainly several notches higher with festival co-founder and arguably Australia’s most widely performed playwright, David Williamson preparing to exit stage left with Crunch Time.

It will be his final play before retirement and what a coup having the latest theatrical triumph as a curtain-raising prelude to – and fundraiser for – NOOSA alive! In addition, David will be donating royalties from Crunch Time to the festival.

NOOSA alive! producer Tim Loydell said there was fabulous energy amongst the cast that includes actors of the calibre of John Wood (Blue Heelers), Guy Edmonds (Betrayal) and Diane Craig.

“We’re so looking forward to seeing another thoroughly gripping Williamson production come to life here. It’s got all the ingredients that make his plays so very Australian, so contemporary, and so razor-sharp funny, full of wit; and his gift of putting relevant and real social issues under the spotlight,” he said.

Asked to reflect on 50 years in the theatre ahead of the openings of Family Values and Crunch Time, David and his wife Kristin said “between us, we have been directly involved in creating and running four Noosa Long Weekend Festivals (now NOOSA alive!) and of course have been involved in all 18 festivals to date. Each has left us with many wonderful memories.”

David recalls times when the sharing of culture through art and performance brought the community together and times when it was all hands on deck to support (and accommodate) the artists.

“In the first years, Bryan Brown came offstage and shared anecdotes with the audience over a few beers, and then disappeared into the surf for days,” David fondly recalls.

“Film critics Margaret Pomeranz and David Stratton judged short films screened on a wild, stormy night in a huge tent that was packed with excited young film-makers; and became mentors to many of them.

“And who could forget the opening night when fireworks exploded from barges out to sea and lit up the whole of Noosa beach, after which hundreds of people of three generations danced in the sand to the performance of that timeless band, The Delltones.”

David recalls a time when the festival relied on the generosity of locals to support the artists and performers.

“If we couldn’t find enough free hotel accommodation for our actors, musicians and artists we asked local people to lend them a house,” he says.

“String quartets rehearsed in our living room and committee meetings were held on a long table on our veranda. Volunteers drove the artists to their venues and took them sightseeing in their boats on the Noosa River.”

David and Kristin are a humble quiet couple and understandably proud of the Festival’s success, however, it goes without saying that Noosa is so indebted to their generosity, foresight, patience and creative spirit which have no bounds. Oh and of course, for knowing so many equally talented folk and wonderful friends who love coming to Noosa for the 10-day festival.

Thanks to their dedication, NOOSA alive! has grown to become a highly revered festival of art and culture and 2020 is to be the biggest and best yet.


Thursday 16 April & Friday 17 April at 7.30pm,
Saturday 18 April at 2pm and 7.30pm.

Venue: The J Theatre, Noosa Junction

The storyline is all about Steve, a typical Aussie bloke. Recently retired, he’s passed the family business over to his son Jimmy but his eldest son Luke has never quite seen eye-to-eye with his dad. But, time is running out to repair their broken relationship.

Tickets are $65 for all performances; $60 concession for the Saturday matinee show.

BOOKINGS: Click here to secure your ticket or call the box office on 5329 6560 Monday to Friday from 10am – 3pm


About the Author /

Noosa’s sophisticated charm, vibrant food culture and the magnetism of a subtropical paradise surrounded by national parks, inveigled Helen’s manic world and flipped it on its side. She pursues the good life with gusto, instinctively understanding the joys of travel, the art of story-telling, a candid review and surviving another reno whilst thriving on the motto Live Laugh Love!

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