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Creativity laid bare at NIDA Writers Readings

Nine talented writers from NIDA’s Master of Fine Arts (Writing for Performance) are presenting their final works in a series of live rehearsed readings.

Photo: The NIDA writers of 2019, left to right: Grace Chapple, Isaac Forsyth, Thomas Owen, Kasia Vickery, Nicholas Duddy, Bryce Bofinger, JoJo Zhou and Samira Spring. Credit: Maja Baska.

Photo: The Sydney Theatre Company 2019/2020 Emerging Writers Group including NIDA writer Enoch Mailangi, left to right: James Elazzi, Jordyn Fulcher, Polly Rowe, Wendy Mocke, Mark Rogers, Kip Williams and Enoch Mailangi. Credit: Ken Butti.

Nine talented writers from NIDA’s Master of Fine Arts (Writing for Performance) are presenting their final works in a series of live rehearsed readings.

As excerpts from larger works, the readings include issues around gender, sexuality, liberal democracy and political transparency. Presented across 10 days, the story plotlines range from refugees in an alternate universe, a young woman’s roller derby team in their grand final, a dark comedy about organised crime, the impact of ever-present technology, an exiled Holy man and the journey of love through the ages.

Brought to life by trained actors, the stories reflect the issues of our time, with the writers encouraged to explore and experiment within the genre by playwright and Course Leader Writing for Performance Dr Stephen Sewell.

The writers, many with works presented in theatres across Australia and acclaimed in awards, are committed and passionate about creating Australian stories for theatre and screen. All the writers have juggled the skills required for the rehearsed readings, including performer, assistant director, dramaturg, designer and stage manager.

About the writers

  • Brisbane-based Bryce Bofinger comes from Queensland Theatre’s 2017 Playwrights Program to present Nothing To Fear, a story about a family’s isolation and paranoia.
  • Swiss-born, Mexico-and-Colombia-raised creative Samira Spring has been selected to be part of Kings Cross Theatre 2019 Storytellers Festival. Her piece The Princess Party explores cultural colonisation and a young girl’s quest for freedom and independence.
  • Nicholas Duddy, a writer and theatre-maker from the Adelaide Hills, has received recognition in the Flinders University Young Playwrights Award. His work We Three, The Sea traces love, loss, longing and loneliness in a coastal town.
  • From Western Australia Grace Chapple, already published as part of an anthology by Currency Press, has written Never Closer. A group of high school friends hold fast against a cold winter’s night to remember the good times. The play develops into an exploration of trauma and forgiveness.
  • Thomas Owen, a writer and performer of musical theatre also from Western Australia, has two degrees from University of Western Australia and the Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts (WAAPA). People Fingers is a dark comedy about finding empathy after a life spent in a world where crime is organised and justice is brutal.
  • Enoch Mailangi, selected as a 2019/2020 Sydney Theatre Company Emerging Playwrights Group, explores the treatment of First Nation armed forces in an experimental text-based video work Platypus.
  • Isaac Forsyth, a French-Australian novelist, video and performance artist, hails from Melbourne, with a background in circus, illustration, theatre and the garage/punk scene. The Petal Thief is a four-character mosaic exploring crime, addiction and love.
  • JoJo Zhou received the Young Regional Artist Scholarship during her studies in Bathurst’s Charles Sturt University and has never looked back. Porpoise Pool is a one-woman show about gratification, expectation and technology.
  • Kasia Vickery is an emerging writer and comedian from Sydney with a love for sketch and stand-up comedy. Her piece, Play On, is a jam-packed spectacle of queer love, strength and self-discovery set in a roller derby grand final.

The evening readings are FREE and run from Tuesday 15 October to Friday 25 October at NIDA, 215 Anzac Parade, Kensington NSW 2033. There is no registration required. All information and times of events here.

Feeling inspired? NIDA applications have been extended to 31 October 2019. Visit

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