Robert in Crisis


Robert needs a bloody drink!

Robert has it pretty sweet. Kids, wife, house in the ‘burbs’, the whole shebang! Until he receives a bombshell from the missus. After a wild night with his best mate, his life is further torn apart and he enters into another world, an outsider looking in, with no responsibilities and nothing else to lose.

Robert in Crisis explores the notion of why men sometimes make extreme and damaging decisions after being confronted with a situation they are not equipped to handle. This gripping monologue is performed with black humour and treads a fine line between the understandable and the inexcusable. Issues of familial separation and domestic violence rear their ugly head and do not hold back on the inevitable destruction and consequence.

Set to a 90s alternate rock soundtrack, Robert spins a tale of his journey to the dark side. As his life spirals out of control, audiences are left wondering, will Robert redeem himself or ultimately become the monster?

The inception of the show came from writer and performer Scott Gooding’s personal experiences. Ten years ago Gooding was living through a depressive episode. Sitting outside of himself, watching in, Gooding witnessed how his own behavior was making his partner at the time miserable. Gooding reflected that it was like being “taken over by another entity”.

Winner of the Darwin Fringe Festival Best Performance Award 2019, Robert in Crisis is a darkly comic study of ‘good blokes’, infidelity, revenge … that departs reality.

Trigger Warning 

Content in this show contains scenes that some viewers may find disturbing and are not suitable for younger audiences.

If this play raises concerns for you or someone you know contact:

Lifeline on 13 11 14

MensLine Australia on 1300 789 978

Beyond Blue on 1300 22 46 36

Headspace on 1800 650 890

Men’s Referral Service on 1300 766 491

NT Domestic Violence Helpline on 1800 737 732

Cast & crew

Scott Gooding, Playwright and Performer, is a Darwin-based theatre maker with over 30 years’ experience in the professional performing arts sector. He has worked with a number of mainstage theatre companies and has been the Artistic Director of two independent, and three community theatre companies. Goodings credits include ‘Ruby Moon’ (Steam Productions), ‘360 Positions in A One Night Stand’ (Vicious Fish Theatre), ‘The Belbel Project’ (Vicious Fish Theatre), ‘Eric – The One Man Sketch Comedy Show Trilogy’ (Vicious Fish Theatre), ‘The City They Burned’ (Attic Erratic), ‘Cuckoo’ (15 Minutes From Anywhere), ‘Agni – Lit By Fire’ (Apollon Studios), ‘Cock’ by Mike Bartlett (15 Minutes From Anywhere), and ‘Away’ (Brown’s Mart Theatre). His solo play ‘Robert In Crisis’ (Vicious Fish Theatre) has had Melbourne and Perth seasons, a Brown’s Mart Theatre main stage season, and won the Best Performance Award at the 2019 Darwin Fringe Festival.

Hayley Butcher, Director, is a Melbourne-based director, writer and producer. She is best known as half of the comedy duo Dash and D’Bree. Butcher has performed at the Melbourne Comedy Festival and Melbourne Cabaret Festival. She has alos been nominated for a Green Room Award.

Nicky Fearn, re-mount Director, has been associated with professional theatre as a performer, writer, teacher and director since 1980. She is a freelance theatre-maker who works in both Australia and the United Kingdom. Fearn is the Artistic Director of Business Unusual, a visual theatre company based in Darwin that specialises in combining mask, text, puppetry and live music.

Bronwyn Pringle, Lighting Designer, is an award-winning lighting designer and theatre-maker. With over 25 years of creative experience, she has worked nationally and internationally with a variety of companies and at venues from The Princess Theatre to a West End Nightclub in London and a warehouse in Buenos Aries to the Woodshed in Glencoe, South Australia.


Robert talks as if we are his confidantes … but not, I think, a jury.

Robert Reid, Witness, 2018

… powerful and surprising

Nicola Fearn, ArtsHub, 2019

The performance was amazing. The story and the message really resonated with me, a great show with a powerful message … keeping us engaged and entertained was just WOW!

… as someone living with Bi-Polar, I saw pieces of myself in Robert – the shut-down, the blank stares, and the feelings of nothingness. This is a conversation that needs to be had. People need to be much more comfortable in saying they aren’t ok and that they need help.

Tano La Macchia, audience member

Robert’s performance was outstanding and the storyline took an unexpected dark turn.

Mikael Arthursson, audience member

Enabling a conversation around often dark and difficult to talk about social and personal issues is often the best starting point to bringing about change and encouraging positive lifestyle choices. ‘Robert in Crisis’ starts a community discussion … It also reminds us of the detrimental effects that can take hold when men don’t seek help and battle through their struggles in isolation.

Terry Melrose, Senior Community Educator, The Regional Men’s Health Initiative

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