I was first introduced to the Australian playwright, Jay Corr, by a mutual friend on Facebook, who arranged a phone conversation to take place between us on the 14th of July at 9 am. 

At the time, I was working on turning Georgina, my book, into a stage play and I had been told that Jay was an award-winning international playwright.

Ever since I wrote my book about Georgina’s life, it had been my dream to turn it into a stage play and then a movie. From the start, I have always been open to suggestions on how I could turn that dream into reality.

Meeting Jay Corr

So, on this memorable Thursday morning, I called Jay; I introduced myself and he confirmed that he was expecting my call.

I asked Jay if he could give me some advice regarding turning my book into a play.

He said he usually charges for advice, but today it was free! I took an instant liking to his humour and liked him as a person. 

I find it very rare that one has an immediate rapport with someone they had never even met, but that is how I felt about Jay!

He said he would love to help but he was currently on another project and would be tied down for at least a year. I told him I understood that he was busy, of course. 

But I found Jay very interesting and a great person to talk to. I felt very safe with him and was happy to share my dreams and ideas.

contemporary-australian-playwright-jay-corrFurther into our conversation, I told him a bit more about me and my lifelong dream to make Georgina come alive again, which I felt would help others overcome adversities in their lives. I confessed how much I felt alone in getting this dream to become a reality.

A Life-Changing Offer – To Write the Play

About 10 minutes into the conversation, Jay said, “You know what Gabriella? You send me your book and I will send you my resume. I’ll drop what I am doing and help your dream to become a reality. You’re no longer alone – I will help you!”

I was shocked and stunned! What just happened?

Up to this point, I had felt this dream would never come true, but now I had a real offer of help!

True to his word, Jay sent me one of his plays, along with his resume. This confirmed that he was, as I’d suspected, a wonderful and creative contemporary Australian playwright! And so our partnership was formed!

Within two weeks of receiving my book, Jay sent me a draft of the first and last act of our play. It was wonderful, full of emotion and feeling! No wonder he has won awards for his plays!

Sometimes, Jay would ring me in the middle of the night because Georgina would not let him sleep! Apparently, my mother is a very hard taskmaster, demanding the best of everyone. 

The “Georgina Holocaust Memoirs” book has very little dialogue. Jay told me he would have to take each individual character, become that person and then work out what they would say. An incredible task!

Background Information for the Play

Now that the play was on the way and in good hands. I decided I would go to Hungary and find the missing documents, which would validate that the story is true. I also wanted Jay to have an idea for the background sets that he needed to create for the play.

Jay would call or text me several times, even while I was away. He sent me every scene as soon as he finished for my approval. He’s a fantastic person to work with!

I got the documentation for my book in Hungary. Yes, all I had written about was true! Jay followed the book exactly, making no short cuts or leaving anything out, he was just amazing.

There was one more surprise waiting for me. Jay had finished the play – “Georgina”! It had taken him two months and he hardly slept during that time. Wow, this is dedication! 

After talking to him over the past weeks, often three or four times a day, I could hardly wait to meet Jay.

The Australian Playwright Who Brought my Play to Life

Several days after my 30-hour flight home, I hopped into my car and drove to Port Macquarie. Was I still jet-lagged? Yes! But I wanted to meet this wonderful man, who had turned my life’s dream into a reality. 

Well, what can I say? Jay Corr is such a wonderful person! I found talking to him an incredible experience. I say something and he can turn it into a hundred different meanings, he has such a quick mind! I can see why he is such a great contemporary Australian playwright, and the reason he excelled in his earlier profession as a crown prosecutor.

While at Port Macquarie, I was also privileged to meet some of Jay’s friends, as well as the cast that would play the different characters in our play.

georgina-cast-contemporary-australian-play

So, in this amazing partnership between myself and this talented Australian playwright, our next chapter opened. We have already booked the Greek Hellenic Theatre in Marrickville, NSW, for next August, to preview the theatrical production of Georgina. More theatres to come soon – maybe even New York!

“Georgina” Premieres in Sydney on 21st, 22nd and 23rd August 2020 – Tickets for the play can be purchased here