The death of Toowoomba teenager Kristjan Terauds is a story of love and strength after tragedy—and one that will be captured on stage at the Mandurah Performing Arts Centre next month.
April’s Fool is the heart-wrenching story of how the teen lost his life in 2009 due to complications from illicit drug use.
Director Lewis Jones heard about Kristjan’s story through a mutual friend.
In the lead-up to Kristjan’s death, his father, David Terauds, kept a journal documenting the experience.
‘‘I recognised that it would be a story that would make real connections to Toowoomba as well as other regional communities,’’ Jones said.
He said the Terauds family had been generous in allowing Empire Theatre Projects Company to bring Kristjan’s story to the stage. Award-winning playwright David Burton was commissioned by the theatre group to bring the story together.
Burton said as soon as he read Terauds’ journal he was immediately intrigued and moved.
‘‘Different people had varied reactions when they read the journal,’’ Burton said.
‘‘I actually picked it up over breakfast thinking I would just read a part of it.
‘‘I was still there four or five hours later.
‘‘I just had a ‘My God’ reaction and the same when I read it again the next day.
‘‘The journal was an astonishingly well-written document and such a testament to his son.
‘‘I think seeing the show is a beautiful experience because you see how people survive—that is what the most moving thing is for me.’’
Jones said April’s Fool would be thought-provoking in reference to drug use.
‘‘In presenting April’s Fool our aim is not to present an argument for or against drug use, but rather to encourage debate and discussion about the choices we make and the consequences of our actions,’’ he said.
Joining the creative team is designer Josh McIntosh and sound designer Brett Collery.
The cast includes seasoned performers Jessica Harm, Sam Clark, Belinda Raisin, Allen Laverty and Barbara Lowing.
April’s Fool will show at 11am on Tuesday.
For tickets, visit www.manpac.com.au or call the box office on 9550 3900.