NIDA acknowledges the Traditional Owners and Custodians of the lands on which we learn and tell stories, the Bidjigal, Gadigal, Dharawal and Dharug peoples, and we pay our respects to all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Elders past and present.

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Ghost Lights asks the world to interact and keep the spirit of theatre alive

Photo: NIDA Bachelor of Fine Arts (Acting) student Albert Mwangi as Hamlet.
The National Institute of Dramatic Art (NIDA) invites audiences around the world to join the journey of Ghost Lights, a transmedia production being staged as part of NIDA’s 2020 Digital Theatre Festival.

For Ghost Lights, audiences worldwide are invited to perform, record, and upload a monologue to social media to keep the spirit of theatre alive. The best monologues will be showcased every week.

'At the beginning of this pandemic, every theatre in the world was closed. That never happened before,' said Director, projection and new media artist Katy Alexander. 'We were seeing all these amazing images of empty cities, like the Eiffel Tower and Sydney Opera House with no one around, and that got us thinking about empty theatres – where do all the characters go? That’s really where the concept came from.’

‘As all performance venues across the world went dark, the old tradition of the ghost light was revived - leaving on a single naked bulb on a stand inside the theatre - to ensure that an empty theatre is kept ‘alive’ and never left in total darkness,’ she said.

Australian and international audiences are now invited to take part and help keep ghost lights, characters and the magic of theatre alive by uploading a monologue on social media.

Photo: NIDA Bachelor of Fine Arts (Acting) student Lachlan Kent as Puck at Sydney Capitol Theatre.

Prepare and record a monologue from your favourite play and upload it to social media using the #ghostlightscommunity + #ghostlights2020 in the caption and tag the Ghost Lights page (@ghostlights2020) on both Instagram and Facebook.

All are welcome, not just actors. Ghost Lights is keen to have as many kinds of monologues as possible, in as many voices as possible. If you are a writer, we welcome performances of your monologues or duologues: you may wish to perform them yourself or invite friends to perform them.

Each week the production will select the best monologues to be featured on their social media.

Ghost Lights participants are required to seek permission from the copyright holder of their chosen script prior to recording and uploading a monologue, unless a work is now in the public domain.

Photo: NIDA Bachelor of Fine Arts (Acting) student Lachlan Kent as Puck at Sydney Capitol Theatre.

Ghost Lights is directed by projection and new media artist Katy Alexander, who was resident director at California Institute of Arts and trained with Robert Lepage and The Builders Association (NYC).


Creative producers: Katy Alexander, Lachlan Steel, Morgan Moroney & Mali Tauro-Cesca
Director: Katy Alexander
Technical Designer: Lachlan Steel
Set Designer: Alexandra Allanson
Costume Designer: Claudia Kryszkiewicz
NIDA students from the Bachelor of Fine Arts, Acting, Design for Performance, Costume, Properties & Objects, Technical Theatre and Stage Management, Scenic Construction and Technologies.

Information about all productions and bookings at

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