Situated in Sydney’s grimy heart, the SBW Stables Theatre, home to Griffin Theatre Company (and to Nimrod before that), has been a beacon of commitment to home-grown theatre talent for decades. Like nearby Kings Cross, its charms are of the no-frills and knocked-about variety. The venue’s theatrical history is written on its walls in layer upon layer of paint. The floorboards have absorbed countless buckets of stage blood, sweat and tears.

And in a few weeks, it’s all gonna be gone. The Stables as you know and (maybe) love it is poised to be redeveloped into something fit-for-purpose in the 21st century. By way of a farewell, Griffin is staging one of the more massive projects it has attempted to date – The Lewis Trilogy, a triple-bill of Louis Nowra’s semi-autobiographical plays that can be viewed individually or, as in this case, in an afternoon-through-evening marathon performance.

Paul Capsis, Thomas Campbell and Philip Lynch in Summer of the Aliens. Photo © Brett Boardman

The journey begins with Summer of the Aliens, Nowra’s now-classic story of growing up in the desolate, semi-urban fringes of Melbourne in the early 1960s. Then we meet Lewis again...