Love Child

by Joanna Murray-Smith

2001, 2006 & 2007 National Tour

August 13 – September 29, 2001 – 7 week tour to 27 venues in VIC, NSW & QLD
Preston, Colac, Portland, Werribee, Kyneton, Warburton, Wangaratta, Swan Hill, Echuca, Wagga Wagga, Warrnambool, Mildura, Wonthaggi, Warragul, Shepparton, Bayswater, Melbourne, Griffith, Parramatta, Taree, Lismore, Toowoomba, Nambour, Maryborough, Rockhampton, Cairns & Mt Isa. 

July 27 – November 15, 2006 – 6.5 week tour to 13 venues in WA, VIC, NSW, ACT
Perth, Geraldton, Mandurah, Kwinana
, Griffith, Tuggeranong, Shepparton, Camperdown, Portland, Warburton, Ballarat, Nunawading & Dandenong.

March 12 – April 21, 2007 – 5 week tour to 10 venues in VIC, NSW, SA, QLD
Melbourne, Woy Woy, Sale, Warragul, South Morang, Adelaide, Redcliffe, Ipswich, Brisbane & Parramatta.

A production by Christine Harris & HIT Productions.

Love Child, starring Amanda Muggleton, is a compelling drama about a reconciliation between a mother and the daughter she gave away at birth.

Anna (Amanda Muggleton) is a successful film editor in her 40’s who lives alone in a cold, stylish apartment, until a young woman called Billie (Melinda Dransfield) arrives at her door. Billie acts in soap operas and is searching for her birth mother. Together these two fractured women confront the implications of distance; between then and now, between generations and between the one who gave away and the one who was let go. 

Love Child resonates with universal themes – parent/child relationships, redemption and the need for love – and takes both the characters and the audience on an emotional journey through anger and remorse to excitement and joy. Love Child deals with issues that either have a direct impact on the audience or will intrigue them.

The play offers a relatively traditional theatre experience.  It is character based and the narrative follows a straight line from beginning to end. The setting and style is naturalistic. In other words, the play is accessible.  However, the audience is drawn in by a strong sense that these two women approach this critical moment in their relationship with a predetermined ‘script’ and things don’t go as planned. It is there the central intrigue of the work lies, and the situation appears to unfold as much for the characters themselves as for the audience, and it is this connection.


Director Bruce Myles and his cast, Norris and Longley have found the truth in their roles and leave the audience moved, disturbed and talking to one another. Love Child also has a terrific set (Judith Cobb) and first-rate lighting (Rachel Burke). Touring productions rarely show such attention to detail.
Chris Boyd, Herald Sun, VIC, 08/01

The mother and daughter are played by Victoria Longley and Sarah Norris, a formidable acting duo who bring not only great technical expertise to their roles, but also sensitivity and a light humorous touch… Love Child goes right to the heart and for Geelong theatregoers it is worth a trip to Werribee…
Tony Prytz, Geelong Advertiser, VIC, 08/01

This production features two extremely impressive actors, Victoria Longley as Anna, the mother and Sarah Norris as Billie, the daughter… Director Bruce Myles has drawn a tremendously moving, passionate performance…
Helen Thomson, The Age, VIC, 09/01

“Simple yet strikingly presented, the story wove through the past and present so beautifully that I would have been surprised if it didn’t touch the heart of each and every person in the audience that night.
Macedon Ranges Guardian, VIC, 08/01

This is a concentrated, intense, often poetic one-act play. Love Child is a demanding two-hander, and Longley and Norris are terrific throughout.
Steven Carroll, The Sunday Age, VIC, 08/01

…tight new version with an elegant set lit beautifully and two actors well cast for their contrasting style and appearance…Melinda Dransfield is wonderful to watch as she struts colt-like on stage with the pertness of a young Nicole Kidman.”
Victoria Laurie, The Australian, WA 07/06

Muggleton puts in a centred and convincing performance as the 40-something career woman…she walks the tightrope…with understated skill.”
Pier Leach, The West Australian, WA 07/06


Anna: Victoria Longley (2001)

Billie: Sarah Norris (2001)

Anna: Amanda Muggleton (2006-2007)

Billie: Melinda Dransfield (2006-2007)


Playwright: Joanna Murray-Smith

Director: Bruce Myles 

Designer: Judith Cobb 

Lighting Designer: Rachel Burke