Queensland Theatre celebrates its 50th anniversary

For nearly half a century the state’s flagship theatre company, Queensland Theatre, has been creating exceptional Australian stories on and off the stage.

After four years in the role of Queensland Theatre Artistic Director, Sam Strong is leaving the company this November on a high after locking in the 2020 program to celebrate the theatre’s milestone anniversary.

“We are using the 2020 season as a vehicle to celebrate the first 50 years of the company, which we are incredibly excited about,” Mr Strong said.

“What sets Queensland Theatre apart from other theatres is that we play to our whole state rather than just our major cities.

“So, we thought what better way to celebrate than to reflect on Queensland by telling more Queensland stories.”

The 2020 season will feature eight new mainstage productions including the theatrical event of the year, the stage version of Trent Dalton’s smash hit novel, Boy Swallows Universe.

The season showcases a smorgasbord of talent including Director Zoe Tuffin, Master Playwright David Williamson (who is celebrating his 50th anniversary as a playwright) and Queensland Theatre Actors Christine Amor, Jimi Bani, Emily Burton, Ray Chong Nee, Jason Klarwein, Angie Milliken, Bryan Probets and Toni Scanlan.

It will also feature Australian acting royalty Nadine Garner and Rhys Muldoon, along with young Australian talent including Josh McConville, Contessa Treffone and Sheridan Harbridge. 

Joining the actors are the best directors and designers in Australia including Paige Rattray, Lee Lewis, Dale Ferguson, Richard Roberts, Renee Mulder, Ben Hughes, Steve Francis and Sam Strong himself.

Mr Strong said the best way for audiences to experience the Queensland Theatre is to buy a season ticket to see all of the shows.

“When we put together a season of eight shows it’s deliberately curated to offer a series of experiences,” Mr Strong said.

“It’s sort of like an album where we try and take an audience on a journey to a variety of places over the course of the year. Some shows are comedic, some are darker or tragic, some are provocative, some are more thought provoking, and some are just fun and entertaining.”

In his final weeks with Queensland Theatre Sam said he is most proud of how the theatre has evolved over the years by embracing a new name, a new theatre (the Bille Brown Theatre which opened in South Brisbane last year), record breaking ticket holder numbers, 20-year subscriber highs and a principal partnership with RACQ.

The new Artistic Director for Queensland Theatre will be the current Artistic Director and CEO of Griffith Theatre Company Lee Lewis who will start in January 2020.

As an RACQ member you receive exclusive discounts to experience Queensland Theatre’s upcoming season performances. Enjoy the full 2020 season of performances with eight shows for the price of six.

Season 2020

Emerald City

8-29 February at the Playhouse, QPAC
By David Williamson, directed by Sam Strong 

Triple X

14 March–4 April at the Bille Brown Theatre
By Glace Chase, directed by Paige Rattray

Othello

30 May–27 June at the Bille Brown Theatre
By William Shakespeare, directed by Jason Klarwein

The Holidays

11 July–1 August at the Bille Brown Theatre
By David Megarrity, directed by Bridget Boyle

The Children

1-29 August at the Cremorne Theatre, QPAC
By Lucy Kirkwood, directed by Zoe Tuffin

Trent Dalton’s Boy Swallows Universe

29 August – 19 September at the Playhouse, QPAC
Adapted for the stage by Tim McGarry, directed by Sam Strong

Prima Facie

8-31 October at the Bille Brown Theatre
By Suzie Miller, directed by Lee Lewis

Phaedra

14 November–5 December at the Bille Brown Theatre
By Katherine Lyall-Watson, directed by Caroline Dunphy