About Local Stages

Local Stages supports the development of the performing arts in the Bathurst Region and the Central West of NSW

The program was initiated to “unlock” access to BMEC’s facilities and resources for the development of contemporary and innovative performing arts practice. There was a realisation that as regional theatre companies were disappearing regional performing arts centres were arising and that these could become hubs for a diverse range of regional contemporary performing arts development.

Bathurst Arts Residency NSW
In 2022 BMEC and Performing Lines are calling for Expressions of Interest for performing arts practitioners to from the NSW Central West  for the inaugural BARN (Bathurst Arts Residency NSW) 2022 to be held at St Joseph’s Heritage and Conference Centre in Perthville from April 29-May 1.

The BARN – (Bathurst Arts Residency NSW) is produced by Bathurst Regional Council and Performing Lines as part of Local Giants, a joint program by Performing Lines, Regional Arts Australia and PAC Australia, supported by the Restart Investment to Sustain and Expand (RISE) Fund—an Australian Government initiative, and the NSW Government through Create NSW. Original concept developed by Performing Lines Tasmania (formerly Tasmania Performs) and supported by Arts Tasmania.

This three-day, two-night event provides a supportive, creative environment to test ideas, consider new collaborations and explore cross art form possibilities.
This is an opportunity for writers, choreographers, dancers, directors, actors, theatre makers and designers to come together and explore new project ideas. Applications welcome from…

  • People at the start of their artistic practice
  • Senior artists with significant experience
  • Mid-career artist
  • Collaborative teams (up to 3 members) working together on a single concept who should apply under the name of whomever is the lead artist on the project

To apply please complete the expression of interest by clicking here. 
If you’re nervous or unsure if the retreat is for you, or if you have any concerns about the fees please email or phone Kylie at BMEC to discuss. phone 6333 6161

 Local Giants Partners Funders Logo Strip 1 line

Local Stages Background
In 2007 Local Stages was funded as a three year pilot project by the Theatre Board of the Australia Council for the Arts, Arts NSW (now Create NSW) and Bathurst Regional Council (BRC). Thirteen years later Local Stages has firmly established itself as a vital regional program and funding is obtained from a range of sources with core funding continuing from Create NSW and BRC. Projects are also supported by Regional Arts Fund and Australia Council for the Arts.

The position of Creative Producer was established to coordinate the Local Stages program and to act as an animateur of local projects and of the relationship between local artists and appropriate artists outside the region. Margie Breen held the position for the first two years and was succeeded by Kylie Shead who is the incumbent Creative Producer.
Since its inception Local Stages has assisted with the growth of the Catapult Festival, instigated the Aboriginal Performing Arts Program, established Smashed Arts, worked with local partners to create the Bathurst Writers’ and Readers’ Festival and the Central West Short Play Festival.  Local Stages also developed the Local Emerging Artists Program (LEAP) at Inland Sea of Sound and created strong links between local artists and some of the finest professional artists around Australia and generally extended the horizons of possibility for performing arts practice in the Bathurst region.

Local Stages is now part of the heart of BMEC and is intertwined with every element of BMEC performing arts activity.

Click here for a short video showing some of work that Local Stages has supported. Thank you Becky Russell and Brendan Napier from Production Art.  
Projects in the video include: Four Lingua Franca; The Death of Kings writer Colette Keen Dir Adam Deusien;  Synthesis by Alison Plevey; The Sand Dwellers writer Kay Nankervis Dir Becky Russell;  Catapult Festival - Images Gravity & Other Myths & Theatre/Media Charles Sturt University Students; The Climbing Tree by Rachael Coopes Dir Stephen Champion; Hill End Burlesque created by Hill End Arts Council, Home Sweet Home by Kim Deacon; Windows on the World writer Colette Keen; Invisible Bodies created by Fiona Green; Right Behind You by Lingua Franca;  A Good Bloke by Adam Deusien; Clique by Alison Buckley (Cowra), Central West Short Play Festival Artistic Director Becky Russell; Bathurst Writers' & Readers' Festival; Unsustainable Behaviour by Lingua Franca; Boats by Brooke Murray; Oh My God I've Been Kidnapped and Hate What I'm Wearing Drew Fairley with Kate Smith; Outpost - Adam Deusien & Heidi Annand; On Becoming A Witch by Cate McCarthy, Titanomachy by Adam Deusien - Theatre/Media Charles Sturt University; Tarnished La La Parlour; Mighty by Lingua Franca; Making It Alone by Adam Deusien; Cabaret Kite featuring Kate Smith; The Disappearances Project by Version 1.0; War Letters by Kathy Cameron with Adam Deusien. 

For more information about Local Stages contact Kylie Shead.