THE FRONT is a musical about ‘Fromelles’, the bloodiest battle in ANZAC history. Filled with soaring romantic melodies and infused with a uniquely Australian spirit, it depicts the brutality of war and commemorates the love, loss and legacy of our WWI veterans.
Significantly, a major inspiration behind THE FRONT is the contemporary events surrounding Fromelles - the discovery of mass graves at Pheasant Wood in 2008, filled with nameless bodies of lost soldiers. Many have been identified by archeological evidence and DNA comparisons with living relatives. As of 2010, over 250 Australian and British soldiers had been re-buried in marked graves at the site.
THE FRONT is the culmination of 13 years of work for Lane Hinchcliffe, a South Australian writer and composer with a history of forebears who served in France, 1916-1918. Through his passion and drive to increase awareness of ANZAC history, Lane has created an evocative piece in a contemporary style and form. This is an exciting development in contemporary Australian musical theatre writing. THE FRONT goes beyond celebrating the lives of our WWI Diggers. It is a story that depicts the pain of loss and respectfully admires traits of courage and bravery. The tragedy of events is juxtaposed by quintessential Australian humour and larrikin culture and the core of the narrative is driven by a story of overwhelming love and hope. Because of the universal themes and human drama underpinning the story, we believe that the work will be attractive to production on both the national and international stage for years to come.
THE FRONT has the potential to be become a fully staged musical that is an original work of Australia, inspired by the ANZAC legacy and spirit. It celebrates the life and acknowledges the sacrifice of Australian men and women who served in WWI. Furthermore, it pays homage to the legacy and epitomizes the significance of the upcoming centenary.