You have to be sneaky to find the truth. Charlie Manson knew this. His Family knew this. The person next to you probably knows this. Maybe you do too. Come down to Sneakyville. It’s a hell of a trip.

Sneakyville is a new work from award-winning playwright Christopher Bryant that explores and eviscerates our cultural obsession with serial killers by examining the impact and legacy of one of the most infamous international figures of the twentieth century, Charles Manson.

Enormous in scale and brutal in commentary, it’s a play that demands to be heard. Sneakyville was developed throughout 2014 and 2015 as Bryant’s graduate piece for NIDA, through US-A-UM’s ‘Play By Play’ programme with Imara Savage as director & dramaturge. Sneakyville tracks the murderous legacy across continents and decades, from California in the 60s to Melbourne in 2018, showing how the ripple effect of male violence continues through time.

  • black comedy
  • 120
  • 6 total
  • 4 female identifying, 2 male identifying
  • 18+
  • teen, young adult, adult
  • Australian Script Centre


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Male | 20s | 3 to 5 minutes
Starts on page 38

EXTRACT: I sit, back curved, shoulders down, hand shooting out to collect another call. My mouth moves, flaps, up and down, and I can hear the words but they seem somehow automatic and alien, free-falling off my tongue. I am a mechanical man, drowning in the thick tar that lies in the void between asleep and awake.

Adult themes



"Sneakyville is never anything less than a confronting and challenging piece of theatre, creatively staged and ambitious in scope and scale."



"A masterful retelling... Bryant renders the voices of Manson and the Family with a concise ear for rhythm and cadence, acutely capturing the jinky, poetic tumble of messianic pop philosophy... [Sneakyville] creates an air of clinical detachment, suggesting a forensic investigation as well as the impenetrability of historical events and the blurriness of recollection."



"///Sneakyville/// is at once a visceral experience and an intellectual and emotional challenge. ... Christopher Bryant isn’t the first to delve into our fascination with horror, the thrill of violence and the seductions of psychopaths – but he does it with incisive originality"

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