Public performance explores local history

20 Apr 2017

Members of the public are invited to take part in a theatre project that explores Newcastle's history in a free one-off performance in Civic Park.

Presented by Newcastle Region Library and Curious Legends with the help of a Make Your Place grant from Newcastle City Council, Hidden Port will present dreamtime stories, giant puppets, lanterns, multimedia projections and ghosts in the outdoor spectacle.

The Newcastle community are invited to be part of the public theatre project on Friday 5 May and also help craft puppets and props for the show at two workshops later this month.

"Newcastle City Council is delighted to support this event that will both explore the history of the port and help activate Civic Park with a performance by and for the community," Lord Mayor Nuatali Nelmes said.

"I encourage mums and dads to bring their kids along to the workshops to help make the props and also take part in the performance around dusk on Friday 5 May."

Curious Legends Artistic Director Mitchell Reese said the theatre company wanted to showcase Newcastle’s history, particularly in and around its working port.

“Over the last two months we’ve been busy collecting a large amount of stories, photographs and other materials to make the performance a fascinating show,” he said.

“We've unearthed stories and photos from the Newcastle Region Library archives, materials from Hunter Living Histories, and also received many wonderful submissions from the Newcastle Community.

"It’s inspiring to have so much material to work with and I know everyone will enjoy the event."

To take part in the performance, members of the public need just attend one of two rehearsals in Civic Park from 4pm to 6pm on Tuesday 2 May and Wednesday 3 May.

Professional artists and performers involved include Karen Eastwood, Ross Brown, Zackary Watt, Auntie Debbie Date, Connor Fox, Felicity Yorston, and Mitchell Reese.

The actual performance will be held in Civic Park at 5pm Friday 5 May. Food and drink will be available on the night with coffee carts and food vans.

The free workshops to make puppets and props will be held at Curious Legends' studio at 8-10 Union Street, Newcastle West, on Saturday 29 April and Sunday, 30 April, between 10am and 4pm.

Curious Legends is a local professional theatre company with a big reach that specialises in community projects.

Hidden Port is also supported by Port of Newcastle, Port Waratah Coal Services and Orica.

For questions and more info, email: or visit
Newcastle Region Library: Carol Edmonds - 0400 225 514
Curious Legends: Mitchell Reese – 0425 214 975 or

Making Workshops:
8-10 Union Street, Newcastle West
10am to 4pm 29 & 30 April
Cost – Free

Performance rehearsals:
Civic Park
4pm to 6pm 2 and 3 May
Cost – Free

Further details can be found by emailing: