The Anywhere Awards are our way of acknowledging a fraction of the outstanding experiences at the 2017 Queensland Anywhere Theatre Festival.
From 4-21 May there have been over 300 performances across 130+ locations in Brisbane, Ipswich, Sunshine Coast, Mackay, Cairns, Mount Isa, Hervey Bay and beyond!
So, before we announce the awards, how does it work? The Anywhere Awards are based on audience nomination numbers and comments. Audiences nominated a show and had the option to state why they felt it should be nominated for an Anywhere Award.
Alex McTavish and Pau Osuch then looked through the reasons for nomination and took into account the entries per show. They took into account the audience capacity for the show because an event with a capacity of 20 and less nominations can be just as amazing as one with more votes because it has a capacity of 200.
There is no “Best” production, script, direction, up and coming, actor in a comedic role, or bodice in a period drama etal. Instead, each award is for the entire experience – the impact on audiences, the artistic risks and the realised ambition of everyone who created these wonderful experiences – an enthralling story in a location that people can experience no other way.
This is the second time we have run the Anywhere Awards and this year there were 1,565 votes – over three times as many votes as the inaugural awards in 2016.
This year there are only eleven Anywhere Award winners, and they are…
This Anywhere Theatre Festival, leave the city behind and join Big Fork Theatre down by the campfire for a night of laughter, mayhem, mateship and marshmallows.
- “Around The Campfire is a hilarious show which utilised the ‘anywhere but a theatre’ clause of the festival to its best and fullest.”
- “No other show captured the Anywhere concept of sitting around a campfire telling stories with friends more than this show of friends sitting around a campfire telling stories. How come no one has done this at Anywhere Theatre Festival before and will it please please become a regular festival event?”
Be entertained in the iconic Porters Timber Yard by cabaret and music theatre star Kurt Phelan (Dirty Dancing, American Idiot, Tender Napalm), Molley Rossetto (Man Songs, Sweeney Todd, Chicago), and Kyra Geoghegan with Sarah Rozekrans on piano.
- “Timber Dreams was wildly entertaining. A timber yard was incredibly cool as a setting and the lighting and sound was perfect. The performers all outdid themselves with Kurt Phelan really setting this performance apart from others.”
- “Incredible Cabaret show in a really cool timber yard. Never had a venue smell so good. Kurt Phelan was a stand out and a big deal for little Mackay.”
Dream a House is an immersive labyrinth installation that takes you through the corridors of memories you hold, and dreams you have traversed..
- “What a great idea, and a great use of the house. I loved being the only audience member. I felt very fulfilled when I exited the dream! It’s not every theatre show one gets served a cup of tea, and the chance to lie down and look at the stars!
- “Dream a House is the most stunning, inspiring piece of theatre I have ever witnessed. A true marvel.”
Cluedo! The Interactive Game
Presented by Brisbane Immersive Ensemble
Where: Kookaburra Queen Showboat
Cluedo! The Interactive Game is a theatrical reimagining of the iconic Cluedo board game where guests must solve puzzles, find clues and discover the culprit who will spill the secret they would kill to keep.
- “Cluedo was the single most exciting, immersive, and provocative theatre experience I have ever had. It turned the hundred-strong audience into a mix between a team and a riotous mob. Five stars.”
- “The BEST night ever! The show was a dream come true, by bring my favourite childhood game to life. The performers did an amazing job. Wish I could relive the experience.”
How would you feel if you had raised a murderer?
- “I saw the play about a week ago and have been mulling it over since. I went with my friends and we couldn’t stop talking about the visual images. I thought the show was so diverse in the messages that the audience knew what it was about but the specificity of what we learnt varied each individual. All the movement was symbolic and thought out. These young actors worked hard in expressing something with all their hearts.”
Europe Won’t Fix You
Presented by The General Public Theatre Company
Where: Studio 4.2, Metro Arts, Brisbane
This is a show about running away. An anti ‘finding yourself’ story. A travel tale you won’t find on Instagram.
- “Went to see this show on a Saturday night with my boyfriend. It was our first time watching any theatre material since high school and also our first indie performance group. The venue, the atmosphere, the exquisite and hilarious performance took us by surprise. The show was down-to-earth. We enjoyed the honesty and laughing at ourselves. We soon forget that we were sitting on cold, plastic chairs and milk crates and were transpired into the author’s world. Thank you for a great experience that many of our friends will envy.”
Contemporary, Jazz and Hip Hop Dancers come together to tell the history of 43 Adelaide Street–a heritage listed building with a decadent, colourful and mysterious past.
- “I loved how the performances started outside as we, the audience, stood on a gangway which led to the back alley and then we had to wonder what really was behind the Red Door. The atmosphere was set and we were then delivered from room to room by a storyteller where we witnessed the experiences of those whom had once dwelt in the building, brought to life by each performer.”
- “It was great to see some of the heritage of this building depicted through dancers who have immersed themselves in someone else’s life. Well done to all involved. An awesome and emotive experience!”
Staged within the 250 seat roman style amphitheatre, nestled on the shoreline of Lake McDonald and surrounded by the gardens, these talented young performers bring this iconic story to life.
- “Incredibly talented cast of 12-17 students. Spectacular setting for a romantic tragedy. Such professionalism at such a young age. Excellent use of the space. Showcasing the stars of the future.”
- “An amazing event if more than 35 young drama students who extended themselves with vigour and zest for 2.5 hours without missing a beat. True passionate players and future talent!”
We invite you to drink, laugh, cringe and gamble on the most risky game show of the twenty first century: Rape Culture. A game show for all players.
- “This was a great show with a powerful message. Almost two weeks on and I still feel the power those girls had. All the best wishes possible, and thank you for sharing your stories.”
- “This show was captivating, interactive, fun and spot on at raising a key issue that is often neglected. I loved being part of this show and watching these bloody brilliant women dominate. I’m thankful for their brains for writing this and their hearts for being so raw with the content.”
The Farce Awakens
Presented by Folly Games
Where: Museum of Brisbane, Brisbane
Enter a Game World on the brink of destruction by a mysterious force known as The Dull. The Farce Awakens is a cocktail of parody, pop culture and puzzle rooms, with a twist of pun.
- “An amazing show that transports you to their world. The multiple endings made it even more exciting, you can be as involved as you want. It was amazing!”
- “What an absolutely amazing show. Such attention to detail in costuming and venue and fantastic characterizations from very skilled actors. I loved this show! My only regret is I didn’t see it more than once so i could get the chance to follow a number of characters journeys.”
Physical comedians Barnie Duncan (MICF Best Newcomer nominee, 2015) and Dani Cabs (Adelaide Fringe Emerging Artist Nominee 2015) combine for the first time to bring you their tribute to the greatest movie about death ever made.
- “Such a creative idea for a show and So funny. My cheeks were hurting at the end of it from laughing so much! Real talent from those two men.
- This show was so much fun. It was ridiculously clever and creative, and such a joy to watch. Best night!”
Also, the three randomly selected winners of a stretched and framed canvas of an Anywhere Photograph from the selection are: Amy McDonald, Louise Visser and Jonathan Whitburn. We will be emailing you all with details.
Thank you to everyone who filled out an audience survey and everyone who voted in the Anywhere Awards!
* Photo of audience members at MAN ABOUT THE HOUSE by Ilsa Wynne-Hoelscher-Kidd.
* Photo of DREAM A HOUSE by Krystal Beazley
* All show photos courtesy of each company or artist.