Room to Play
This initiative supports performing artists by providing a home to hone their skills, collaborate, experiment and perform their wonderful shows. Audience engagement and creating a community of performers that provide quality entertainment and provocation to the community is our mission.
Room to Play is keen to provide our local, talented performing artists a space to collaborate and showcase their work. We believe the artist is always emerging and development is in the doing. Room to Play is interested in shaping the community by what they do and not always by what they spend.
Room to Play thrives on cooperation and the generous spirit that working in the arts promotes whilst ensuring sustainable growth for artists that encourages longevity in the industry.
Room to Play Production Company
Room to Play is an independent theatre group that works with local, professionally trained artists to create awesome, intimate spectacles in theatre. Our determination is to keep excellent performing artists in Brisbane, working sustainably and creating innovative theatre that is part of the growing cultural hub of Brisbane. This initiative calls on the richness and diversity of local performers. Our team includes Heidi Manche’ (Director), Desley Martin (Designer) and Mikaela Hollands (Producer). Our aim is to broaden the scope of voices seen and heard onstage. We perform in spaces that are intimate, industrial and surprising with the desire to activate spaces in adventurous ways.
Heidi Manche’ – Founder and Director of Room to Play
Heidi Manché studied theatre at Macquarie University in Sydney and was granted a scholarship to study at La Sapienza Rome University in Italy, with a project to work alongside Nobel laureate Dario Fo. Heidi translated many of Dario Fo’s texts into English whilst enrolled in the performing arts department. She was a core ensemble member of the theatre troupe, Stalker, touring throughout Italy. On her return to Australia, Heidi joined a Commedia troupe in Sydney, founded an independent theatre venue, The Crypt Theatre, and continued to direct plays whilst enrolled in the Sydney Film School with a focus on directing. Here she won the award most popular documentary, Charmayne.
Moving to Brisbane a few years ago, Heidi founded Brisbane Youth Theatre and the independent theatre company Room to Play which toured to the Melbourne Fringe Festival with Ionesco’s The Bald Prima Donna. Manche’ has recently directed Dario Fo’s, The Virtuous Burglar and One Was Nude and One Wore Tails and Brian Friel’s Afterplay to sell-out seasons in Brisbane as well as touring to Sydney Fringe Festival. Room to Play produced Tom Holloway’s Red Sky Morning and has been chosen as one of the independent companys supported by Queensland Theatre to produce Jon Fosse’s first play. Heidi is currently collaborating as director on Dario Fo’s Mistero Buffo, presenting at Billie Brown Theatre in 2017. Room to Play activates spaces and hosts theatre in various venues including The Paddington Substation, Taylor King Gallery in Newmarket and The Void in West End.
Mikaela Hollands – Producer
While studying a Bachelor of Creative Industries at QUT, Mikaela was led to stage management for theatre in both Australia and while studying abroad in the State University of New York. Before graduating with distinction, Mikaela also completed a programming internship at Theatre Republic during Brisbane Festival 2015. This is where she realized her passion for independent theatre and has continued to work with student and semiprofessional theatres around Brisbane. These include One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest (Brisbane Arts Theatre), Disney’s The Little Mermaid Jnr. (Brisbane Arts Theatre) and Underground Productions’ Westended. Mikaela was elected Production Manager for Underground Productions’ 2016 executive committee and has since produced Terminus, Oedipus Rex, Love and Information, NSFW, Kidnapping for Jesus and Playground Student Theatre Festival.
Desley Martin – Dramaturg
Desley has a degree in Fine Arts, Townsville and worked with Townsville Civic Theatre. Recently she has been dramaturg for Eugene Ionesco’s The Bald Prima Donna, Dario Fo’s The Virtuous Burglar and Afterplay by Brian Friel. Anywhere Festival 2014, 2015. Melbourne Fringe 2014, Sydney Fringe 2015. Martin currently studies Drama and Dramaturgy at University of Queensland.