"As an audience of millennials and older, we can all remember, in many cases with clarity, where we were when the planes hit."
I Saw The Second One Hit stars two teenage twins, Juliette and Madeleine Hemphill, who were born on September 11, 2001. The show's director, Clare Watson, remembers the moment the twin towers fell, and now has developed a play with St Martins Youth Arts Centre about what weight 9/11 carries among the young people born after the event.
Juliette and Madeleine talk to us about how they came to learn of 9/11, how it made them and their peers feel. Through direct speech and through recorded voiceovers we learn about the fears and hopes of a small group of teens today. Juliette and Madeleine come across as natural and inquisitive, which is interesting to us, as an audience of millennials and older; we can all remember, in many cases with clarity, where we were when the planes hit. The play also explores how Australia was or wasn't affected by the tragedy.
Among all this there's discussion of the god particle, alternate universes and the myth of Romulus and Remus — an analogy for 9/11. The script is complemented by a stirring calisthenics display from the twins, soundtracked by Fun's We Are Young — at first this appears to be an odd choice but its tempo and uplifting melody, plus its lyrics about youth, fire and optimism, end up being quite fitting. And finally, as the twins hold their poses, standing tall and still on their toes with their eyes closed before the play ends, they become towers themselves; living structures, a symbol of our future.
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