Latest News

What's News @ BMEC this month?


In January 2016 BMEC began a new venture, ‘The Regional Theatre Project’, in partnership with the Australian Theatre for Young People. This project has two clear outcomes; one will be a new theatre production being written by award winning writer Rachael Coopes, in demand composer and sound designer Guy Webster. Rachael wrote the script and Guy cretaed the sound design for Sugarland, which was presented in Bathurst last June as part of the BMEC 2016 Annual Season. For the past 12 months Rachael and Guy have been visiting Bathurst, running workshops and collecting stories. This research will be used as a basis for a new work, with the working title The Climbing Tree, which will focus on the experiences of young people in Bathurst over several generations. It is planned that The Climbing Tree will premiere in the 2018 or 2019 BMEC Annual Season.
The second outcome will be a new work devised with young people in the community. In January 2017 will see the next stage of its development and there is still time to get involved.

In the October 2016 holidays 10 young people, age 13-16 years came together to develop an outline. In the coming summer holidays they will regroup to develop the script, compose music and learn some production skills to pull the work together leading into a performance in April.
They will be joined by some of Bathurst’s professional theatre makers: Penelope (Nel) Kentish, Maryanne Jaques, Abby Smith and Karl Shead. There will also be support from BMEC Staff including Stephen Champion and Kylie Shead.

Nel will direct the work. She is a theatre maker and community cultural development practitioner. She is also a casual lecturer in theatre/media at CSU and has made theatre with young people via Bathurst Theatre Company, Flag Youth Theatre (Melbourne), Tantrum Theatre (Newcastle), Apple Farm Arts and Music Center (Elmer, NJ, USA) and her local company Beloved Monster. Nel has written three plays for Tantrum Theatre, one of which – 'Talk is small: a play with Scrabble' – was nominated for a CONDA in 2010. She co-founded theatre company Big One Little One and recently held a mini festival of their work in Sydney at ATYP.
Maryanne Jaques will work with the students to develop their script. Maryanne is a graduate of CSU theatre/media and is the Communications Officer at Arts OutWest. She has written numerous plays which have been developed into short films as well as being presented onstage.

Abby Smith is a Bathurst based vocalist, pianist and songwriter (both solo and in her duo Smith & Jones) as well as a singing teacher and choir leader. She has vast experience in performance, song writing, general music education and has worked extensively with young people, as well as people with disabilities.

Karl Shead will join the team to assist with design and production. Most recently Karl designed the Hill End Festival and Inland Sea of Sound site decorations. Karl has over 20 years experience as a theatre designer, builder and teacher. He is the Technical Theatre Officer in Faculty of Arts and Education.

The performance will take place at BMEC on 13 April. Young people can still register to be a part of this project. Contact BMEC Box Office 6333 6161 or online

By: Kylie Shead, Creative Producer Local Stages. Bathurst Memorial Entertainment Centre