The Brisbane Actors Company was founded in 1976 by David Clendinning and Bruce Parr whom were frustrated by the tendency to employ actors from interstate and by the disbanding of Twelfth Night Theatre Company‘s acting ensemble, the Brisbane Actors Company’s primary aim was to provide employment for local Brisbane actors. The group adopted its new name of the Actors Theatre in 1978 and proceeded with productions of mostly small-cast plays until its final production in February 1981.
The Brisbane Actors’ Company first presented a new verse translation by Tony Harrison of the French classic THE MISANTHROPE by Moliere at the Conservatorium Theatre. Despite a brief run, this production aroused interest with critics and public alike, that since then the company was encouraged to present more plays of the same high standard.
In April 1978 this demand was met when the Company mounted its second production at the Kelvin Grove College of Advanced Education Drama Studio. On this occasion, the offering was a double bill… THE CHAIRS by Ionesco with a curtain-raiser, THE PROPOSAL by Chekhov.
In August 1979, the Company took a giant leap forward by moving into Twelfth Night Theatre with Alan Ayckbourn’s modern tragi-comedy JUST BETWEEN OURSELVES.
With encouragement from many sources. the Brisbane Actors Company began to explore ways of establishing itself as a permanent entity. on November 26 1979, at a public meeting, it was unanimously agree the Brisbane Actors Company Co-operative Ltd be formed.
The Board of Directors included:
- Jane Atkins
- Stephen Baggalev, Chairman
- David Clendinning, Artistic Director
- Bernadette Connole
- George Fryberg
- Michael Hill
- Bruce Parr, Secretary
Brisbane Actors Company
The first production was THE MISANTHROPE at the Conservatorium Theatre which opened on December 5, 1976, and their last production was HOME at the Edward Street Theatre which opened on 17 February 1981.
Their philosophy was simple one: to present theatre spiced with joy, excitement and imagination.