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Flotsam & Jetsam

Touring May & June 2011

Flotsam & Jetsam is a delightful story-telling performance for children, which evokes the life of a child growing up on an Australian lightstation. The show is for children aged seven to 10, and their families.

When Nikki was a child in the 1950s, her dad was a head lightkeeper, and they lived on a lighthouse island.

Nikki, now a woman in her sixties, gets a lift in a helicopter to revisit her childhood home. The memories flood back, and we are swept along with Nikki, who with her sister Sally had the whole island as an adventure playground.

With help from children in the audience, Nikki recreates her island and her family’s hair-raising journey there. She relives the games they played, their exploration of the island, and describes the family celebrations. She takes us up in the tower to explain some of the children’s chores.

“We had such fun watching Chrissie jumping about, changing character and turning us into the rocks and the sea and the cliffs.” (quote from a Teacher)

Through the eyes of the playful and adventurous Nikki, and the anxious Mrs Ingram, who blows in from 1910, young audiences experience the joys and hardships of living in a wild and remote place where school is in the kitchen with mum and the nearest shop is hundreds of kilometres away.

The experiences of Mrs Ingram’s family contrast sharply with those of Nikki’s, and Nikki’s childhood differs greatly from Aussie kids of today. Upon revisiting her island Nikki regrets their old family home has been wrecked by vandals and the weather, but rejoices that the lighthouse, now automatically run, still sends its light out every night.

Cape Otway Lightstation is touring The Keeper and Flotsam & Jetsam as part of its ongoing commitment to education and raising awareness about Australia’s rich maritime heritage.


Cape Otway Lightstation is making a single performance of Flotsam & Jetsam available to schools for $4 per student with a minimum fee of $400. Cape Otway Lightstation will invoice schools prior to price is a Q&A session after each performance.

Professional Presenters

If you would like more information about Flotsam & Jetsam or The Keeper, please contact Janice Haynes on jhaynes[at]ncable[dot]net[dot]au or 0407 348 478. Up to three performances of The Keeper can be performed in one day.

Marketing Materials

Cape Otway Lightstation can provide you with a press release, ready-made artwork for posters, and photography. Actor Chrissie Shaw is available for interviews. To arrange interviews call Lightstation manager Paul Thompson on 03 5237 9240. You can download an information pack about Flotsam & Jetsam. (691KB PDF)