1981 was the peak of a golden period for the Queensland Theatre Company which was powering along doing 18 productions: 7 mainstage productions in its season at the SGIO Theatre, 1 outdoors in Albert Park, 2 separate touring shows, ANNIE doing a Queensland state tour and return season at Her Majesty’s Theatre, 3 Theatre in Education productions plus the launch of QTC Tangent Productions with another 3 productions:
Alan Edwards had long wanted to have a second house. A place for new work, more risky productions, passion pieces and where talents could be given an opportunity to branch and develop. The idea was for more bare boards and passion rather than big glossy production. As a result, QTC Tangent Productions was formed in 1981 to mount experimental work in a converted office building on Edward Street: Edward Street Community Arts Centre Theatre (later the Sue Benner Theatre).
The budgets were small and tight. Salaries, plus a small amount of workshop and wardrobe time was inevitably stretched by those departments. Use of stock set, costumes and props was presumed. Admission charges ranged from a high of $7 for adults to just $2 for QTC Passport Holders.
“A Necessary Tangent“
QTC Tangent Productions quickly became an important part of QTC’s work:
- QTC wanted to find a way of giving artists a chance to experiment.
- QTC wanted to give some younger artists a chance to develop their skills.
- QTCs magnificent main house, the SGIO Theatre, didn’t always suit every play, in particular the more intimate ones, and it was important to the showcase the greatest variety of theatrical fare as possible.
Theatre with a difference is what QTC’s Tangent seasons were all about. The plays were innovative and entertaining. The productions were thought provoking and creative. QTC Tangent Productions gave artists a chance to extend and develop their horizons. QTC commissioned new works and music and produced world premieres.
QTC Tangent Productions provided theatre with a difference…