Theatre audiences might be forgiven for expecting déjà vu in their 2022 programs, of eternal returns of productions delayed, foreshortened or cancelled by a pandemic over the past two years. But the nation’s stages are yielding a bumper season of new Australian plays or fresh productions of international works, as if the hibernation of lockdown convinced artistic directors to burst defiantly back into creative life.

Certainly, there is delayed gratification: S. Shakthidharan and Eamon Flack’s East Meets West epic of reconciliation The Jungle and the Seaat Belvoir, for instance, originally scheduled for 2020 as their follow-up to the lauded Counting and Cracking; or writer-performer Glace Chase’s Triple X, the “first trans love story on the Australian mainstage”, opening the Sydney Theatre Company’s 2022 season after the production’s postponement Wharf-side for the past two seasons.

The Jungle and the Sea Belvoir