Arts CQ Inc - Rockpocalypse (2019-2020)

About the Project

This project involved the final creative development, dramaturgy and presentation of the premiere season of 'Rockpocalypse', a new work of locally-responsive, community-based theatre by emerging playwright Jessica Lamb.

When and Where 

Rehearsals and production of this theatre piece began at the end of July 2019, the performance was held on the 24th of November 2019 at the Walter Reid Cultural Centre.

Facts, Figures and Statistics

Number of attendees at performances:


Number of participants:


Number of artists/cultural workers employed:


Number of people employed in other paid positions:


Number of volunteers engaged:


Type of sectors partnered with:

Building/hire, landscaping, airlines

Percentage of survey respondents answering 'good' or 'excellent' to the question:
Overall, how would you rate this activity?
(response options - excellent, good, average, poor, very poor)

91% (total of 79 respondents)
RADF Funding

$1,000 (Quick Response Grant)

Outcomes Identified by Grant Recipient/s
  1. Financial and artistic support for local actors.  This is the first that that the local performers have been paid for performance despite extensive local experience. The artistic support of having professionals working with locals was received well because it wasn't seen by locals as others blowing in to tell us what to do' but rather professionals here at our invitation to help. That difference in focus, whilst very small, is very profound in terms of accepting the support and mentorship on offer.

  2. Strategic outcome. We attracted the 'right' influencers and opinion makers in the local theatre scene in the audience and we think we may have impressed them to make more of this type of theatre here. We can tell this informally because of the number of people who turned up to the Sunday matinee talking about reading the review and being encouraged to attend by friends. This production highlighted to all theatre professionals the benefits of connection to local culture in regional storytelling and the fact that this can be done in this region at a very professional level. This production will embolden the participants to speak up on issues of local importance and share with others.

  3. Playwright gained a great deal from creative development process with dramaturg (as did performers) and her role as creative producer. Our goal to capacity build our regional theatre professionals was attained by providing the performers with access to support from intra-State theatre professionals and a new way of considering new work.

Reflections and Learnings

Having the playwright in the room was a new experience for nearly all the creative team. This worked extremely well. We will definitely repeat the process of creative development with the playwright for new works as this was invaluable to the whole team, both creative and production. The process educated the performers about the conceptual nature of the process of writing for theatre. It allowed an inexperienced cast to get to the heart of the process of creating and thinking about a new work in a similar way that an orchestra may work directly with a composer. This means the performers' interpretations were informed in a different way from 'learning lines' in a traditional script, which is an exemplary learning and performance tool.

Administration and communication were considered by performers and the creative team as exemplary due to our Creative Producer's logistical skills and organised nature. Our ticketing worked very well and very cheaply through our website however having physical tickets at the door was expected.

Our survey results show we attracted a good number of non-theatre goers, more than half the audience comes from outside Rockhampton and we can increase our ticket prices.

Audience Feedback / Artist Comments

"Excellently directed. Good acting. Very contemporary topic! Amazingly believable and immersive."

"Outstanding work - deeply thought provoking, relevant to audience/ location/ current political climate, highly amusing."

"Really effective story; great humour with characters and script; sad and made you empathise with all the communities worldwide who have been deceived."