MiNDFOOD reviews A Broadcast Coup

By Gill Canning

Credit: Prudence Upton
Credit: Prudence Upton
In the post #MeToo era, what does a safe workplace look like? How are Millennials and Gen Zs influencing the way Boomers have traditionally worked and lived? And is it ever too late to learn from our mistakes?

A Broadcast Coup is a new Aussie play set in a public radio station, where veteran broadcaster Mike King, “a white man of fame and importance”, rules the airwaves. His long-term producer, Louise, like many 2ICs, keeps her boss under control and his show at the top of the ratings. Twenty-four-year-old Noa has just joined the team as an assistant producer and all of a sudden, the office is having to confront generational change. A smart-as-a-whip Gen Z, she wears what she likes to the office and is not prepared to put up with any sexism or answer her phone after 4pm. In addition, former employee Jez Connell, whose podcast, ‘A Broadcast Coup’, is the most popular podcast in Australia and whose mission is to bring down high-profile men ‘behaving badly’, is sniffing around her former workplace looking for her next story.

Credit: Prudence Upton

This is a comedy and there are certainly loads of laughs but the play turns the headlights on high beam at Boomers (both men and women) who have perpetuated unacceptable workplace behaviours and the sometimes tragic consequences of such behaviour. As someone born on the cusp of Boomer and Gen X, it was fascinating to view the characters’ actions and decisions, and how they may have been mirrored in my own life and career in media. 

There are some outstanding performances in this play but notable are Sharon Millerchip as Louise and Alex King as Noa. Having worked across multi-media for decades and with three Gen Z children of my own who are just entering the workforce, I found their portrayal of their characters to be strikingly authentic, and later in the play when both women are forced to experience scales falling from their eyes, their shock and horror is both palpable and personal.

Thoroughly recommended.

A Broadcast Coup
Ensemble Theatre
Until 4 March, 2023



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