creating with the hunter valley community


From inception Upstage has been collaborating with the community to bring quality performances and drama workshops to the Hunter.

UpStage has enjoyed creative partnerships with Tocal Homestead, Tulloch Wines, The Lockup, Newcastle and Port Waratah Coal.

Our most recent creative relationship was in developing Drama Calmer with Yoga Brave, to bring young people tools to cope with anxiety and depression.

Tales of Tocal – Tocal Homestead, 2008, 2011

 ‘Tales of Tocal’ took audiences on a journey of the past inhabitants of one of the Hunter Valley’s most historically valuable properties, Tocal Homestead. Using a promenade theatre structure, audiences moved through different parts of the homestead in intimate groups of 10, while actors played scenes 10 times. The evening culminated in a meal on site. Tales of Tocal was written in collaboration with Sandy Earle, Andrew Coates and Ann Croger and was directed by Ann Croger.

Romeo and Juliet – Tulloch Wines, 2015

 In searching for the perfect venue for our production of one of Shakespeare’s most loved tales, Upstage was approached by Tulloch Wines, to consider their courtyard as a potential venue. Patrons enjoyed Tulloch Wines, local cheeses and re-experienced the joy of first love beneath the starry skies of the Hunter. Directed by Ann Croger.

POST – The LockUp, 2017

 A hard-hitting play written in collaboration by Detective Sergeant Jerry Bowden, and Upstage’s Ann Croger, POST was performed in what was originally the exercise yard of the old Newcastle lock-up. Playing to sold-out audiences, POST explored the events after a police shooting, and the destruction that can ripple from one decision.