Twelfth Night

Friday, Saturday, Sunday, 21, 22, 23, 28, 29, 30 October & 4, 5, 6 November

Friday and Saturday performances at 7:30pm and Sundays at 2pm


The Drill Hall Theatre Company presents

Not quite Shakespeare’s TWELFTH NIGHT

a Rock & Roll Musical with Circus Interludes featuring an All-Female Cast.

It’s over 400 years since Shakespeare wrote this play which turned out to be his farewell to pure comedy. After TWELFTH NIGHT his comedies have a darker element that may have been influenced by the death of his son Hamnet, the many deaths caused by the plague, advancing age or the perfection of his tragedies. Luckily for us he celebrated the Elizabethan dolce vita with a romantic comedy that balances the gaiety and boisterousness of the drunken carousing of Sir Toby Belch with the pathos of unrequited love and the pomposity and self-deception of Malvolio and Sir Andrew Aguecheek. The twelfth night after Christmas was an Elizabethan festival on which the close of the Christmas / New Year season was celebrated and it was the night when this brilliant comedy was first performed. It conjures a carnival world of mistaken identity and gender confusion infused with the poetic genius of its creator.

In Director, Mike Russo’s words, “It seems more appropriate to me to commemorate the 400th anniversary of the death of our greatest poet with a rollicking comedy rather than a tragedy and TWELFTH NIGHT is one of our greatest comedies. I’ve edited the script to make it more accessible and to enliven the celebration even more. I have set our production in the 1950’s and included eight songs played by a live band and four circus interludes. In Shakespeare’s day, only males were allowed to perform on stage which led to young men playing women who sometimes pretended to be young men. I decided that, after 400 years, it was time to experiment with the alternative and chose an all-female cast. I’m delighted to report that the experiment has been a great success.

We’ve had a lot of fun working on TWELFTH NIGHT and look forward to presenting it to you.”


Encounters at Mullum

Sprung!! Integrated Dance Theatre

Friday 7th, Saturday 8th October at 7:30 pm, and Sunday 9th October at 5 pm 

…. proudly supported by The Drill Hall Theatre Company


Encounters at Mullum Poster_small


Sprung!! Integrated Dance Theatre presents ENCOUNTERS, Sprung!!’s latest, beautiful dance theatre work.  Encounters explores the journey of individuation and the quest for identity and belonging with 12 dancers, with and without disability.  Artistic Director Michael Hennessy, who danced with Sydney Dance Company for 9 years, leads this project with local dance company Sprung!! The work incorporates film backdrops by Fernleigh filmmaker John Rado.

Sprung!! Integrated Dance Theatre, led by Michael Hennessy, develops dance theatre works that inspire mainstream audiences and promote a more inclusive society. The nonprofit organization also provides dance and theatre workshops for persons in the community with and without disability, with a focus on collaborative and disability-led process, and providing opportunities for training in integrated dance, dance and physical theatre.

The Encounters Premiere at Mullumbimby will kick off a week of conversation on Arts, Health and Disability that will culminate in repeat performances of Encounters at Lennox Heads Community Centre as part of an Arts and Health Weekend, with a disability, arts and health Forum chaired by Dr Robyn Brady, Paediatrician and Sprung!! President. Catherine Marciniak from ABC Open intends to extend the conversation through collations of Arts-Health local stories and inviting guest posts and radio reads throughout the week.

Sprung!! thanks the Drill Hall Theatre Company for their support with Encounters.

Talk to Sprung!! via our facebook page

Robyn Brady (Paediatrician and President) 0404826662
Michael Hennessy (Artistic Director, ex Sydney Dance Company) 0403869126

‘night, Mother

Friday, Saturday 23 & 24 September at 7:30pm & Sunday 25 September at 2pm



Raw, real and riveting theatre.

The play, ‘night, Mother, by Marsha Norman, a co-production between the Drill Hall Theatre Company Mullumbimby and White Swan productions is directed by Alka (Penelope Chater) and stars two of the region’s favourite actors, Linda Rutledge and Amanda Sebasio-Ong.

Marsha Norman received a Pulitzer Prize for Drama for ‘night, Mother, in 1983. Critics lauded the play for its emotional honesty and realistic dialogue, with much praise on the plays unflinchingly depiction of a family, specifically a mother and daughter, in crisis.

Linda Rutledge trained with Alka for three years in the 80’s and was directed by her in three plays in Byron Shire in the 90’s. In 2000 Linda assisted in creating Character Creation, which Alka now teaches internationally. Amanda Sebasio-Ong participated in the very first Character Creation class, which began in this region and has assisted and demonstrated for Alka in subsequent classes and seminars. Alka also directed Amanda in three productions whilst they both lived in Melbourne for the first ten years of 2000.

The production will be the first play in the rejuvenated Drill Hall Theatre. With comfortable tiered seating, air-conditioning and additional lighting, the space is fast becoming a quality venue without losing its Mullumbimby character.

‘night, Mother  plays for three performances 7.30pm Friday & Saturday 23 & 24 September and2pm Sunday 25 September.


Echo NETDAILY: September 15, 2016


Mullumbimby Drill Hall Centenary

Sunday 28th August from 11am

Flyer A4

What a day.  Thank you Mullumbimby community for helping The Drill Hall celebrate its centenary on Sunday 28th August.  The Belle of the hall (our own 100 year old local, Elva Julien) was there to cut the ribbon for the next 100 years and more……….

There was something to entice and entertain everyone at this family friendly celebration and entry was free.  It was great to see that so many people came dressed in period clothing fitting for the occasion.

You could sit in on a story and let your mind wander; or grab a hoola hoop or a skipping rope and be part of the action.  Others reminisced playing knuckles/jacks?  And others showed their children what we used to get up to when we were ankle-biters, letting them see that we haven’t lost your marbles yet, and could still give them a blast from your past!  There was a chalkboard for memories of the Drill Hall (great stories) and live music; food stalls for all tastes and community gardens interaction.  AND what would a community one-hundred-year celebration be without a Lions Barbecue by the Brunswick Mullumbimby Lions?

Art, craft, history, music, food, community, dance, theatre, storytelling for kids, interactive theatre and Mullumbimby’s Biggest Little Choir.  Even a Soap Box for the verbally erect among us (everyone was a bit shy with this one)  Current tutors at the Drill showed their wares and you could even join in a Pilates class.  And visitors had the opportunity to visit the Potters and their studio, out the back, and find out just how they made all that stuff.

Program (landscape)

What's On

And some comments from the Byron Shire Echo


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The Ballad of Edgar and Mary ~ The Film

Saturday 27th August ~ 7pm for 8pm (and also Sunday 4th September at 1pm)

Edgar & Mary

As a leadup to the Mullumbimby Drill Hall Centenary Open Day on Sunday 28th August, we also have a day of celebration on Saturday 27th.  

The Ballad of Edgar and Mary ~ The Movie

Activist, actor, and patron of the Drill Hall Theatre Company, Tony Barry will officially open the Drill Hall Theatre’s $100,000 plus upgrade of the venue before the world premiere of the film ‘The Ballad of Edgar and Mary’ on Saturday 27 August. Stage One and Two of the Drill Hall upgrade included widening the proscenium arch on stage, air-conditioning installed, new cladding on the outside of the hall and retractable tiered seating for 90+ people. The seating will be installed just a few days before the Centenary Celebrations.

The film of ‘The Ballad of Edgar and Mary’, the play commissioned for the October 2015 production for the Centenary Of The Drill Hall, premieres at 7pm for an 8pm screening 27 August, the opening night of the Centenary Celebrations. There will be a follow-up screening at 1pm Sunday 4 September. Claude Gonzalez co-writer and director of the stage play with Gregory Aitken, directed the film. Shot by outstanding cinematographer Sue Lumsdon, the film captures and highlights the superb performances of the players. The film is not a static shot of a theatre performance. Shot without an audience the camera gets up close and personal to the actors. I have seen a rough cut of the film and it is beautiful. If you enjoyed the stage production you will love the film. Claude and Sue are perfectionists. The cast is sensational and they will have a treasure chest of scenes for their show reel as they pursue their professional careers.

Claude Gonzalez twice nominated for Australian Film Industry (AFI) awards and an IF award will be at the premiere with Sue Lumsdon and the entire cast and crew of the film and the play. There are only a handful of tickets still available for the Centenary Premiere so get in quick. In addition to booking on line (30c booking fee), tickets are also available from The Bookshop, Mullumbimby ~ $15 for the Centenary premiere and $10 for the matinee on 4 September.


Following is part of the review by Genevieve Rose Barr of the stage production of The Ballad Of Edgar and Mary:

‘The Ballad of Edgar and Mary’, is a big and wonderful music hall piece. It is a story of the darkness and the violence of war. And it is also the story of humanity and strength. The creative team behind ‘Edgar and Mary’ have produced a trans-generational musical, a stunning visual and evocative set piece, a nuanced and sensitive exploration of ordinary Australian’s role in the wars. It is under-stated in all aspects, and therein lies its power. It invokes in the audience, and I speak for myself and the people I was with, tears, memory, admiration and strength.’

Local filmmaker Jenny Grinlington’s short film Flashes from the Front will screen before the main feature.

And wait there’s more ~ A reading of The Whistleblower 2pm Saturday 27 August

The Whistleblower is a developing adaptation of Henrik Ibsen’s play An Enemy of The People. Re-imagined for the Drill Hall Stage by Gregory Aitken, the play with music will open on Australia Day 2017 and play until 5 February. A free  public reading of the work in progress can be viewed at 2pm Saturday 27 August as part of the Drill Hall’s Centenary Celebrations.

The Whistleblower is a CSG mining satire. The style lurches from broad Australian comedy to political thriller. Set in the mythical town of Arkaroo in the Darling Downs, an upmarket Indigenous Spa has been built to attract international tourists. Pollution, presumably from CSG mining affects the purity of the water to the Hot Springs. The action pits the idealistic Gabrielle Stockmann against her former husband the pragmatic Mayor. The town too is divided in its response to the pollution problem. Fix it or keep quiet.

In keeping with Aitken’s, Oakman Project style (A Mid Summer Night’s Dream and The Ballad of Edgar and Mary), the production team includes choreographer Michael Hennessy and lighting designer, Sunita Bailey. The Whistleblower is produced by Michael Borenstein and directed by Gregory Aitken for the Drill Hall Theatre Company. The reading with a cast that includes Max Donati, Shelagh Pepper and Carl Taylor is part of the play’s script development. A question and answer will follow the reading.

Salsa and Paella before the Opening of The Celebrations

Between the reading of The Whistleblower and the film of The Ballad Of Edgar and Mary there will be paella and sangria on sale. Salsa dancing will add additional spice.

The Drill Bits Show

Friday & Saturday 15, 16, 22, 23 April at 7:30pm and Sunday Matinee 17th April at 2pm

Drill Bits Poster 2 (Small)

The Drill Hall Theatre Company’s performance The Drill Bits Show ran for 5 performances commencing Friday 15th April with additional performances on 16, 22, 23 at 7.30pm and a Sunday matinee on the 17th at 2pm. The Show was a delightful collection of dramatic bits, comedy bits, dance bits, music bits, film bits, with all the bits shaken into a theatrical cocktail that appealed to all tastes. Opening night was a fundraiser for COREM, that fantastic not for profit local group who were raising funds to install a PV system to the Drill Hall roof.  COREM was also busy in the kitchen preparing curries before each show.

In rehearsal

In rehearsal