Building on an ever-expanding audience base, Bowart premiered his next production Letter’s End in the U.S. in January 2009.
On his inspiration for Letter’s End, Bowart says “I’ve always been interested in memory – how at times it tumbles out like Fibber McGee’s closet and other times seems elusive, stuffed away in an old package in the attic.” The story begins with a man inhabiting a slightly off-kilter dead letter office, but becomes something altogether unexpected. Ultimately a wondrous and poignant journey down a most magical memory lane, where mops sneeze and storks swoop in bearing gifts and trees grow out of shoes, Bowart’s performance inspired Canberra critic Wendy Brazil to remark “you will be mesmerized … he will make you laugh, he will make you sigh, and and you will be enchanted by his every move.”
In March 2009 Bowart undertook a national tour of Australia with the all-ages-friendly Letter’s End , courtesy of a second Playing Australia grant awarded to SpoonTree Productions. The nearly 6-month, 91-show tour, including concurrent workshops and visits to 85 schools and community groups, spanned every state and territory of the country, attracted a combined audience of 51,400, and was the largest Australian theatre tour of 2009.
In August 2010, Letter’s End was nominated for a Helpmann Award in the category of Best Touring Production. In 2010, Letter’s End debuted in Hong Kong as part of the Family Fiesta Series, and had seasons at the Melbourne Arts Centre as part of their family-targeted Kids at the Arts Centre program, and at the Adelaide Festival Centre as part of their CentreStage program. Bowart’s January 2011 season of Letter’s End at QPAC marked his third visit to the venue.
In 2013, Bowart premiered Letter’s End in the UK at London’s Southbank Centre, as part of the London International Mime Festival. The French premiere followed soon after, during a seven-city tour that included dates at the 2013 Festival Effervescences alongside works by Philippe Genty, Daniele Finzi Pasca and James Thiérrée.
Awards and Nominations
Awarded, Playing Australia grant 2009
Nominated, Helpmann Award,
Best Regional Touring Production 2010
Awarded, Going Global grant 2012
National Tour (44 venues) 2009
Adelaide Festival Centre 2010
Arts Centre, Melbourne, Playhouse 2010
QPAC, Brisbane, Playhouse 2011
State Theatre Centre, Perth 2012
Sheung Wan Civic Centre 2010
Yuen Long Theatre 2010
Ngau Chi Wan Civic Centre 2010
Sao Wan Ho Civic Centre 2010
Southbank Centre, London
International Mime Festival 2013
Centre Culturel Desnos, Paris 2013
Théâtre des Cordeliers, Romans 2013
Festival Effervescences, Nevers 2013
Théâtre de Bayonne, Bayonne 2013
Salle de L’Ermitage, Bordeaux 2013
Théâtre Olympia, Arcachon 2013
L’Odyssée, Périgueux 2013
Entrancing … an elegiac vision of life and love.
True to expectation, Bowart brought to life one of those
classic theatre experiences. Tableaux, comedy, simple moments of joy, love and
The Canberra Times, Australia
The amazing thing is that not a word was spoken by Bowart throughout the
performance, but the message was received and understood across all ages and
language and cultural barriers … His onstage talent and ability to connect with
is audience is truly beautiful.
South Western Times, Australia
Silent Sentences in Space
by Robert Jarman
We’ve been spoiled in Hobart this year with several world class performances:
Gisli Gardarsson in Metamorphosis, Wu Hsing- Kuo in King Lear, Robyn Nevin
in Magical Thinking, and now Wolfe Bowart.these are performers whose skills
earn our admiration. Each is generous with their talents, demonstrates
consummate technical expertise in their particular style of theatre, and each
devotes seemingly effortless yet meticulous attention to detail. In Letter’s End, a
shabby clownish man burns lost packages and dead letters in a furnace until a
torn parcel lets fall an old brown teddy bear, and a memory is kindled. As he
opens other items, a whole life unfolds.
The show combines comedy and pathos, mime, magic and sleight of hand,
shadow puppetry film and sound in an exemplary and enchanting mix.
The sheer amount of invention is staggering. Ideas which another performer
might develop in a lengthy episode are here scattered about wantonly, like so
many jewels let fall from a spangling magical cloak. The production values are
high. Bowart, like a one-man circus, is unfailingly charming, clever and adroit.
He is a a physical instrument finely tuned to react to external circumstances. His
body, to borrow a phrase from Jean-Louis Barrault, writes a
silent sentence in space. Letter’s End is aimed squarely at children, but I
unhesitatingly recommend it to all adults and lovers of theatre. You will be
immensely impressed and satisfied.
The Mercury, Australia