If you haven't already booked tickets to see Fling's latest production, make sure you do.
My Black Dog premiered on Tuesday night at the Bega Showground pavilion and it is not to be missed.
The fact the audience was perfectly silent throughout the hour-long performance - as well as for several moments after the lights went down - was testament to how captivating and powerful it was.
I was transfixed from the start, as Rory Warne emerged into the shadowy and purple-tinged light only to launch himself into an energetic display of contemporary dance and acrobatic leaps.
Throughout the performance, Warne's emotion-fuelled parkour and acrobatics, both solo and with his co-stars, was coupled with stillness and silence in a way that had the audience entranced.
While Rory's physical performance was a standout, credit must also go to the powerful narration and singing voice of Luca Yi, who has become one of the region's most seasoned and acclaimed performers at only 14 years old.
Another of My Black Dog's young stars is Lara Scrivens, whose rendition of her original song Ribcage pops up several times in different guises, tugging at heart strings and stirring the actors into ever-more emotionally-charged movement.
Given the title, it was clear My Black Dog was to be a discussion on mental health and depression.
However, while it offered insight into the young minds and lives of the various characters, it also sparked discussion of social pressures and help-seeking behaviours in all who watched them.
To see the intertwined lives of various school students, who they are behind closed doors as well as who they present to each other made for provocative viewing.
Elements of self-image, cyber bullying, family dysfunction and violence, self-harm - these are not easy topics to discuss, let alone be told by such a young cast and crew.
But there was also hope, support from peers, shared coping strategies and fraternal bonds to be held on to at all costs.
I can only hope the call for a wider conversation Fling hopes to start with My Black Dog is taken up by all who see it and shared with those who don't.
The strength of these young actors - for more than just their obvious performing skills - was encouraging for me. I hope others feel the same and their powerful message spreads wide and deep into the Far South Coast.
My Black Dog has a very limited run with shows each night this week through to Saturday, August 16, at 6pm each night. Tickets available at www.trybooking.com/bduyh or on the door (cash only).
Representatives from Headspace Bega and RUOK are on hand for theatregoers before and after the show, sharing contacts and ways to access support should anyone require it.
If you or someone you know requires support, help is available.
Lifeline on 13 11 44, lifeline.org.au
beyondblue 1300 224 636, beyondblue.org.au.