‘Follies of Youth’ centres around four friends as they navigate their way through life in their twenties.
There is Gene, who is an arty free spirit, and who is in a committed relationship with her girlfriend, Maxie.
There is Viv, who is a neat freak and has a tendency to over parent everyone in her life.
There is Jude, a camp, flamboyant young man trying to move forward from years of cruelty at the hands of misinformed people.
There is Charlie, as equally loud as Jude is flamboyant, and who is in a relationship with her high school boyfriend, ‘Chase’.
Throughout the course of the series, we watch the four friends evolve past what they think they are and move into who they are going to be.
After working closely on the play ‘Chasing Rainbows’, during one of the many late night conversations between Tony Avard and Christine DeHavilland, the concept of ‘Follies of Youth’ appeared.
Tony and Christine handed out red ribbons for World AIDS Day on Elizabeth Street. They stood for roughly two hours and watched in 2012 as a lot of people walked past them without an interest in taking a free red ribbon. There were families who would grab their children as they walked pass, so Tony couldn’t get near their children, which was more than a little weird. There was a small minority who also for some reason thought they were handing out AIDS. Not AIDS ribbons but the actual disease AIDS.
Another huge element of ‘Follies of Youth’ is its discussion of sexual assault. Having been through his own experience of sexual assault, Tony felt it was time to tell his story and the story of several other silent people. The point of both of these elements of ‘Follies of Youth’ is to give exposure to these issues and hopefully start some important conversations.
After these experiences, Tony began discussing the fact that he was wanting to deal with the concept of ‘sexual assault’ and ‘HIV’. These two large issues had impacted his life greatly and he was fed up with how they were being presented within the media. Tony began writing concepts and scripts. Christine was there along the way listening to the evolution as it happened.
Together they hope that some fun and laughter comes from ‘Follies of Youth’, as well as possibly starting some conversations.
We hope you enjoy.
Follies of Youth is RMITV’s first fully web based series.