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Chill out for a Mindful May 


Classical music and aerial circus unite in Skyward, an experience designed to slow and calm audiences at this year’s Anywhere Festival, for two performances at the Brisbane Powerhouse. The concept was created by friends, aerialist Georgia Bale and soprano Jo Willans, who wanted to offer something unusual for Anywhere audiences during May. “We’re having a Mindful May,” says the show’s creator, Jo Willans, “And we wanted to share an experience with our audience that would be uplifting and chilled. Mental health is something people are increasingly aware of and a Mindful May is an opportunity to find a bit more peace.” 

Having a Mindful May involves spending time in meditative and contemplative practices like meditation and yoga, for better mental, physical and spiritual health. Skyward brings together beautiful and expressive aerial choreography with live music that is designed to uplift its audience. “We’ve handpicked our soundtrack for its lyrical content and for beauty and simplicity. We’ve chosen music from twentieth century composers, including Copland, Barber and Previn, as well as minimalists like Arvo Pärt and Michael Nyman. The music is uplifting and has a mesmerising quality that is perfect for achieving a contemplative state of mind.” 

Aerialist Georgia Bale trains with Vulcana Women’s Circus and will apply her skills across a variety of aerial apparatus, including her favourite apparatus, lyra, a metal hoop that is suspended. “Some of the songs call for fast spinning and momentum while others need a softer touch, and so we’re using other apparatus like tissu,” says Bale. “We’re using an array of apparatus and physical theatre to capture the mood of each piece, and I’m working with Jo to get her singing on one of the apparatus.” Singing and circus is what brought the two women together. “I never thought that I would be the one singing on the apparatus,” says Willans. “We’ve had a lot of fun, but I have definitely ruled out running away with the circus!” 

Skyward is the third Anywhere show that Brisbane producer Republic of Song has presented at the Festival. Last year, The Ballad of Rosie Quinn, a dark, blindfolded play about the women of Brisbane’s convict past received glowing reviews and won a Reviewer’s Pick Award from the Festival. Willans says, “Skyward is a return to our musical roots, with a bit of a difference. We started with an opera - Menotti’s The Medium in 2016 - and this year we’re returning to classical music. Classical music and circus are natural partners and we’re excited to explore something new.”

Rosie Returns for Valley Fiesta 

Following a critically-acclaimed, sold-out season at 2018’s Anywhere Theatre Festival, we're delighted to be bringing The Ballad of Rosie Quinn to life again for this year's Valley Fiesta. 2018 will be the first year that the Fiesta's programme has offered theatrical events, and will bring audiences into unusual Valley venues for fringe-style events. The Ballad of Rosie Quinn will be presented in one of Fortitude Valley's oldest spaces, the world heritage-listed Holy Trinity Church Hall. This sonorous space will be the perfect companion for Rosie's haunting tale of convict Brisbane. Join us from August 31 for this special event!

“5 Stars” – Fiona Davey

“A deeply moving production, with such clever attention to detail in designing a non-visual show, The Ballad of Rosie Quinn is a chilling reflection on our history and the way that we remember it.” – Elise Lawrence

That's a wrap! 

We have premiered The Ballad of Rosie Quinn with Anywhere Theatre Festival, and our season was sold-out! Audiences were delighted and entranced with our tale of young convict girl Rosie Quinn, and her plight in the penal colony of Moreton Bay. 5-star reviews! What more could we ask for? Another season, of course! We plan to take the story of Rosie far and wide, so keep checking in if you were disappointed and couldn't get a ticket this time, because we will be back. 

Were you one of the screamers? On the first night, a couple of people received some strange sensations across their feet, while others smelt some earthy scents, and others received some startling sounds. Be alert, but not alarmed. All our effects are created with household objects! This pumpkin was a victim of our experiments, and now is sprouting many new pumpkins in the vegie patch!

A big thanks to the team at #anywherefest who managed the whole process of us presenting at the amazing Spring Hill Reservoirs. This amazing space, held by Brisbane City Council created so much atmosphere for our show. We are very grateful for the opportunity to use this haunting space. 

Check out the reviews, and we'll see you soon! 

Anywhere Theatre Festival Reviews


Come to see our original theatre work at Anywhere Theatre Festival this May 

We are proud to be presenting The Ballad of Rosie Quinn at this year's Anywhere Theatre Festival, May 18-20. This original work, written by Jo Willans, is a special theatrical experience because the audience will be BLINDFOLDED! It's a sensory experience that tells the tale of Rosie Quinn, a young convict in the hellish Moreton Bay Penal Colony. The colony was the birth of Brisbane, and was renowned for its brutality. The story focuses on the harsh and difficult lives of the women, which were completely dominated by men. It's part ghost story, part folklore, with some folk music in the mix!

We'll be taking up residence in the incredible space of The Spring Hill Reservoir to create this special event. It's a fascinating underground space, filled with archways, and it rests at the foot of the convict-built Old Windmill. This dark, atmospheric, acoustical space is the perfect setting for our tale. Be brave, and book today! Tickets are through Anywhere Theatre Festival:


Chill Out for Christmas and support the Cure Brain Cancer Foundation 

We’ve been watching our favourite Christmas movies both old and new, and digging through piles of music to put our Christmas Chill collection together. We’ve chosen old and new favourites, and Jo has been busy arranging some golden oldies in a new way for the amazing voices we have gathered. Christmas Chill is the perfect antidote for the rush and stress of the Christmas season. It’s all about taking time out and revelling in one of the great joys of Christmas – carols! Warm up your voice, dig out your descant, hum your harmonies, because we want you to join us in singing some of these Christmas delicacies! And know that $5 of your ticket is helping the Cure Brain Cancer Foundation. Book your ticket today!