Past Productions


Henry IV Part 1: King Henry risked everything to take the crown, but now, under threat from former allies and foreign enemies, it sits uneasily. To make matters worse, his rebellious son, Prince Hal, is spending all his time in the seediest pubs of London with a troupe of petty criminals led by that corrupter of youth, Sir John Falstaff. As Henry's enemies unite and the threat of war approaches, we're drawn into an epic tale of family and friendship, rivalry and redemption. Director: Rebecca Murphy [More info]

The Tragedy of Socrates: Five years after the surrender of ancient Athens in the cataclysmic Peloponnesian War, Socrates, an Athenian philosopher, is charged with disbelieving the gods and corrupting the youth of his city. This rehearsed reading brings to life Plato's philosophical dialogues, in an exciting new verse adaptation by Core Ensemble actor Silvan Rus, portraying the philosopher's defence in court, his imprisonment, and his death by hemlock. Director: Shane Pike [More info]


Hamlet + Rosencrantz & Guildenstern Are Dead: QSE presents their very first in 'rep' season with actors playing the same roles in two plays. Caught between cultures and philosophies, Hamlet careens between paralysis and unconsidered action, while Rosencrantz and Guildenstern - two 'minor' characters in Hamlet's world - vacillate between witty banter and philosophical ponderings on the point of their existence, all while being flung in and out of the orbit of the Prince of Denmark. Directors: Rob Pensalfini (Hamlet) and Rebecca Murphy (Rosencrantz & Guildenstern Are Dead) [More info]

The Blood Votes: A new play by Michael Futcher which brings to life the divisive and at times violent conscription debates of 1916 and 1917. It asks us to consider enforced participation in war through the eyes of mothers, sons, serving soldiers, workers on the home front, and religious and political groups. Director: Rob Pensalfini [More info]


The Winter's Tale: In a searing tale of suspicion and betrayal, a family is torn apart when a beloved King turns jealous monster. His actions set in motion a series of events that forever change the lives of everyone he loves. But in this story, sadness gives way to hope as our tragedy transforms. Fate twists and turns with the change of the seasons and time shows its power. Director: Michelle Miall [More info]

Bogga: At turns hilarious and chilling, poignant and explosive, Bogga uses verbatim oral histories to explore the decline and fall of the infamous Bjelke-Petersen regime through the microcosm of Queensland's notorious Boggo Road Gaol in the 1970s and 1980s. Director: Rebecca Murphy [More info]


Twelfth Night: Set in Illyria, a world where disorder triumphs, rebellion is in season and everything is turned gleefully on its head. Director: Rob Pensalfini [More info]

The Centre: What if asylum seekers from Ancient Greek tragedies were subjected to Australia's offshore detention process? This staged reading uses the stories of Iolaus (from Euripides' The Heracleidae), Cassandra (from Euripides' The Trojan Women and Aeschylus' Agamemnon) and Euripides' Medea to expose the challenges of the offshore processing system. Directors: Jo Loth and Ginna Brock.


Titus: With live music and movement inspired by the dance theatre form butoh, audiences will come face to face with the characters of TITUS as their primal selves are unleashed. Director: Zoë Tuffin [More info]

Voices Inside/Out: A collaboration between QSE and Shakespeare Behind Bars, a performance of six short plays written by participants in the Voices Inside program in Kentucky, about life on both sides of the barbed wire. Director: Curt Tofteland. [More info]


The Tempest: Using the dance theatre form of butoh to bring an island filled with magic and adventure to the stage, QSE examines the themes of authority, forgiveness, and love. Director: Zoë Tuffin [More info]

The Bomb-itty of Errors: The 'ad-rap-tation' of The Comedy of Errors is back again, bigger than ever! Director: Zac Kelty [More info]

Undiscovered: A staged reading of a play by Paul Adams. Frustrated writer Tom has been looking for that one thing to inspire a masterpiece. From an inspiration he writes the best thing of his life, but when it gets mistaken for something over 400 years old, could he be in over his head? Director: Beth Child. [More info]


A Midsummer Night's Dream: One of Shakespeare's most treasured comedies, featuring messy love triangles, feisty faeries, and oblivious fools. With live music, dancing, fighting, and acrobatics, this production explores the discord sown by the faerie kingdom on the mortal realm. Director: Rob Pensalfini [More info]

Mary Stuart: The Ensemble tackles Friedrich Schiller's masterpiece covering the final days of Mary Queen of Scots, in a new version translated by Peter Oswald, in the equivalent of one full-time week's worth of rehearsal. Director: Christina Koch [More info]


The Two Gentlemen of Verona: A gun-slinging frontier Western production of Shakespeare's tale of two young men from the big city who travel to a frontier town and fall in love with the same woman. Director: Rob Pensalfini [More info]

The Bomb-itty of Errors: Shakespeare goes hip-hop in this hilarious modern-day 'ad-rap-tation' of The Comedy of Errors - two sets of identical twins are separated at birth, but inherit their father's talent for rap. When they cross paths in the same city, craziness ensues! Director: Zac Kelty [More info]


The Merchant of Venice: Shakespeare tackles the tough realities of prejudice and exclusion through the wheelings and dealings of commerce in 16th century Venice. Directors: Crystal Arons and Curt Tofteland [More info]


Richard III: Shakespeare's most famous villain hits the Roma Street Parkland Amphitheatre in October 2010. Director: Tom McSweeney

Vis-à-Vis: Moving Stories (Queensland Ballet production) : How does a choreographer translate words into movement? Queensland Ballet takes an in-depth look at ballets which are based on existing works of literature, with the assistance of QSE. Director: François Klaus


As You Like It (2009): The much-loved comedy which centres around Rosalind, a confident young woman banished into the Forest of Arden by her aunt the usurping Duchess. Faithfully accompanied by her beloved cousin Celia, Rosalind disguises herself as a man to avoid detection - a decision which also enables her to get close to Orlando, the young man who has stolen her heart. The pair's rocky road to true love and the weird and wonderful characters they meet along the journey is interspersed by a variety of songs in what is one of Shakespeare's most musical plays. Director: Paul Adams

Where The Wild Things Are: A unique live performance of Maurice Sendak's universally popular children's book - in the evocative and picturesque surrounds of the Lake and Island at Roma Street Parkland. Director: Rob Pensalfini

Food Of Love: A Shakespearean Cabaret. Director: Cienda McNamara


Twelfth Night: Introduces audiences to Viola, a young noblewoman who is shipwrecked on the shores of exotic Illyria. Fearing for her safety in this strange land, she disguises herself as a man, and immediately finds herself in a confused love triangle between Duke Orsino and Countess Olivia. Sanity falls by the wayside amid the eclectic cast of characters and cases of mistaken identity in this topsy-turvy world, where desire and loss hide behind a mask of excess. Director: Rob Pensalfini [More info]

Twelve Angry Men: Reginald Rose's play comes to life in a rehearsed reading in the Banco Court, also featuring guest appearances by members of the Brisbane legal community. Director: Christina Koch

Metamorphoses (2008): The visionary reimagining of Ovid's tales returns to the stage in the Visy Theatre at the Brisbane Powerhouse for a strictly limited season after a stunning preview at the 2007 2high Festival. Do you have the passion to face your shadows and transform yourself? Director: Jo Loth


Much Ado About Nothing: A 'coming of age' love story filled with lively celebration and sharp witty interaction. The stage is set in Messina, Italy, a town celebrating the end of a war, and the audience is taken on a playful journey through intrigue and deception as we celebrate the way animosity can be transformed into love. Director: Jo Loth


Metamorphoses (2006): Cast light on your shadows if you dare! An exciting stage adaptation of Ovid's Metamorphoses - archetypal Greek tales. As part of the !Metro Arts Independents program, the production uses Poet Laureate of England, Ted Hughes' treatment of Metamorphoses and seeks to fuse text driven training with physical theatre approaches to create a raw, powerful performance experience. Director: Leah Mercer

Shakespeare's Briefs -or- Let's Kill All The Lawyers!: In an Australian first, the Banco Court of the Queensland Supreme Court Complex becomes a hyper-realistic set for some of the most famous and infamous Shakespeare trials - including The Merchant of Venice and The Winter's Tale, and features guest judges drawn from the bench of the Queensland Supreme Court. Director: Samid Suliman


The Comedy of Errors: A fast and furious, re-gendered production. Director: Rob Pensalfini

The Madness of King Lear: An intensely vocal and experimental re-working of King Lear. Director: Stephen Daniels


The Two Gentlemen of Verona: Staged reading. Directors: Samid Suliman and Rob Pensalfini


Coriolanus: 17-actor production, complete with battle scenes. Director: Anne Pensalfini

Pericles: Workshop production. Director: Ira Seidenstein


As You Like It (2002): QSE's first full production, featuring live music. Director: Rob Pensalfini


King John: Staged reading. Director: Rob Pensalfini

As You Like It (2001): Staged reading. Director: Rob Pensalfini