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Citizen Theatre in association with Theatre Works presents



Playing at Theatre Works, September 28, 29 & 30 for the 2018 Melbourne Fringe Festival

'Ascent' tells the story of a woman who improves herself to death. In her quest to feel forever fresh and live up others' and her own expectations of how she ought to be, she undergoes a series of physical transformations, ranging from haircuts to facelifts, and more invasive procedures. Reaching for her ideal self, she ascends into oblivion.

The Citizen Theatre ensemble tells this story by creating optical illusions with movement and light, along with an experimental use of song, voice and musical elements.

Want to know more?

Watch our documentary series, "The Making of ASCENT", created by our resident visual designer Stu Brown          

Episode 1

Episode 3

Episode 5

Episode 2

Episode 4

Eager to know more? Have a read of the latest blog post by the Writer/Director

CAST (alphabetical order)

Marty Alix

Jordan Barr

Kala Gare

Willow Sizer

Jessica Vellucci

Non-performing collaborators: Jenni Little

Special thank you: Jack Wunsch (early workshop collaborator)



Fri 28, Sat 29, Sun 30 September at 7:00 PM

Duration 60 mins



Full $32, Conc $28

Group 6+ $28

Fringe Dwellers welcome

Early bird $26 (book 15-25 Aug only)


Writer/Director/Producer: Jayde Kirchert

Composer: Imogen Cygler

Visual Design Collaborator/Graphic Design/Producer: Stu Brown

Lighting Designer: Ashleigh Barnett

Stage Manager/Operator: Sophie Andrew

Social Media Coordinator/Producing Assistant: Steph Clare-Cover

Publicist: Sassy Red PR



Theatre Works

14 Acland St, St Kilda



     All images and video by Stu Brown

    All images and video by Stu Brown


    • Theatre Works is an accessible venue for wheelchair users 
    • For audiences who are deaf or hard of hearing, please contact us to view the script prior to seeing the show 
    • If you have particular access needs, we encourage you to contact us or chat with the friendly staff at Theatre Works so you can be assured of a fantastic experience

    This production is generously supported by Monica and Sam Abrahams and the Ron and Margaret Dobell Foundation, as part of ShowSupport.

    Theatre Works logo
    Melbourne Fringe logo

    The Female Subject

    The Female Subject

    A livestream performance project 

    The Female Subject is a livestream event on Facebook.

    This brand new project is one of a kind, giving viewers the chance to have a unique experience of art & performance through the magic of the internet. Each event goes for approximately 5 minutes that you can watch live, anywhere you have an internet-connected device with access to Facebook.

    The short events have emerged out of research undertaken in 2016. Over 60 female identifying Citizens of various ages and backgrounds were surveyed to get a sense of what it means to be a woman today. Many questions were looking at how a woman’s family and their expectations of women inform one’s experience of womanhood. Overall, the research pointed to some common themes and insights into what it feels like to be among the first generation/s of women to have experienced a range of things that were previously impossible.

    The Female Subject will be presented as a series of Seasons, with 4 events in each Season. Make sure you follow us on Facebook & Youtube so you don't miss out!


    First event: Claws
    Livestreamed Sunday 22nd April 2018, 7.30pm AEST

    Second event: A - Z
    Sunday 29th April 2018, 7.30pm AEST

    Third event: Egg
    Livestreamed Sunday 6th May 2018, 7.30pm AEST


    Fourth event (season finale): Remember
    Sunday 13th May 2018, 7.30pm AEST

    Pilot Creatives
    Writer & Director: Jayde Kirchert
    Visual & Graphic Design: Stu Brown
    Sound Design: Imogen Cygler
    Director of Photography & Livestreaming: Thomas Overend
    Digital Media Coordinator: Steph Clare-Cover

    Pilot Cast
    Kaori Maeda-Judge
    Jordan Barr
    Rebecca Moore
    Jessica Vellucci
    Willow Sizer




    Alexithymia | Citizen Theatre & A_tistic

    Presented as part of the 2017 Poppy Seed Theatre Festival

    8 – 19 November 2017

    Meat Market, Stables | Corner of Courtney & Wreckyn Streets, North Melbourne

    Do you know how you really feel?

    Citizen Theatre and A_tistic joined forces to create a new theatrical work, Alexithymia, which aimed to simulate an autistic experience of the world for audiences.

    Alexithymia is a condition that noticeably affects 85% of people diagnosed on the autism spectrum and is defined as an inability to name or describe emotions.

    Developed and presented by a neuro-diverse cast and creative team, Alexithymia was a speculative fiction, featuring an interdependent and delicate mix of sensory stimuli, sound design and stylised performances.

    Alexithymia was presented as three short works – Social_function.exe was about an autistic woman who invented an artificial intelligence implant to navigate a job interview; The Curious Case of You was a game show that put audiences’ emotional intelligence to the test; and Nirvana Syndrome followed a woman who had no desire for anything and was consequently defined by other people's expectations.

    The Alexithymia season included a sensory friendly/relaxed performance.

    Reviewers said:

    “Alexithymia: Experience the World Through Autism is a truly brave work.” - The Melbourne Critique

    "This is a beautifully polished piece of theatre ... directed with flair by and Jayde Kirchert and performed with exemplary timing by Emma Hoy, Keagan Vaskess and Nicola Bowman" - Stage Whispers

    "At its best, Alexithymia probes [profound human questions] without skimping on emotional intelligence, nuance or complexity." - The Age


    What people said about Alexithymia



    Phillip Dallas - Sound Designer

    Peter Amesbury - Lighting Designer

    Sophie Andrew - Stage Manager

    Jacinta Anderson - Production Assistant 

    Jayde Kirchert - Director/Co-Producer         

    Tom Middleditch - Writer/Co-Producer         

    Stu Brown - Visual Designer/Co-Producer

    James Matthews - Dramaturge

    Poppy Seed Festival logo

    Poppy Seed

    Alexithymia was part of the 2017 Poppy Seed Theatre Festival The production was a collaboration with A_tistic.



    Emma Hoy - Yellow

    Keagan Vaskess - Blue

    Nicola Bowman - Red



    Production images

    Photos by Thomas Overend


    • Companion Cards were honoured
    • Meat Market was accessible for patrons with wheelchair access requirements
    • Scripts were available prior to the show upon request for patrons who were hard of hearing
    • There was a sensory friendly/relaxed performance 
    • A donation was made for another Poppy Seed Festival show to have an AUSLAN interpreted performance

    Inferno: a double bill

    Featuring Crestfall and Purgatorio

    Inferno: a double bill

    Featuring Crestfall and Purgatorio

    Citizen theatre In collaboration with 5pound theatre & attic erratic

    February 4th – 14th 2016
    l1 studios in melbourne's cbd

    Three independent theatre companies from Melbourne joined forces in a rare collaboration to present a never-before-seen double bill of Crestfall and Purgatorio. Both plays dared to push their characters to breaking point, testing their ability to cling to hope in extraordinarily cruel worlds.

    By bringing these formidable plays together, Jayde Kirchert (Citizen Theatre) aimed to create a space where the ideas and themes from both shows could interact and “teach us more about who we think we are and who we might become if we found ourselves trapped in unbearable circumstances.”

    Reviewers said:

    Inferno: A Double Bill “These very strong offerings are the culmination of carefully considered work by skilled, hardworking theatre practitioners...I can’t really recommend Inferno highly enough”— Suzanne Sandow, Stage Whispers

    Crestfall (part of Inferno: A Double Bill) "Crestfall is a mystery thriller with the harshness of Trainspotting ....The effects of this production are visceral and by the end my heart was pounding. Was it fear? Was it anger? I don’t know, but I am really glad I had the experience."— Samsara Dutton, Planet Arts

    Crestfall (Citizen Theatre production)
    Written by Irish playwright Mark O’Rowe, Crestfall follows three tortured women for one day as they deal with violent atrocities in their dystopian, wasteland of a home. Olive, Alison and Tilly’s stories all clash in harrowing ways.

    Purgatorio (A 5pound theatre & Attic Erratic production)
    Purgatorio by Ariel Dorfman, a Man and a Woman interrogate each other, unearthing their darkest sins and secrets in order to forgive and escape the room they’re trapped in, but redemption isn’t so easily obtained.

    Production shots - Crestfall

    What people said about Inferno: A Double Bill

    crestfall cast and creatives (citizen Theatre production)


    Jayde Kirchert - Director (and Producer of Inferno)

    Janel Gibson - Stage Manager

    Alexandra Suttie - Producing intern


    Freya Pragt - Olive Day

    Marissa O'Reilly - Alison Ellis

    Marissa Bennett - Tilly McQuarrie

    Sound design by Frost Fire Audio
    Graphic design and photography by Worth A Shot Productions

    By special arrangement with Dominie Pty Ltd

    purgatorio CAST AND CREATIVES (5 pound theatre & Attic erratic production)


    Jason Cavanagh - Man

    Freya Pragt - Woman



    Celeste Cody - Director

    Fiona Spitzkowski - Production Manager


    • Companion Cards were honoured
    • Though L1 Studios was accessible via stairs only, patrons were encouraged to contact Citizen Theatre to discuss access requirements
    • Scripts were available prior to the show upon request for patrons who were hard of hearing



    Nude At The Alex Theatre St Kilda

    Beneath the songs, the stories and the beauty spot of the blonde bombshell with the red carpet smile

    Nude At The Alex Theatre St Kilda

    Beneath the songs, the stories and the beauty spot of the blonde bombshell with the red carpet smile

    That 'Marilyn Monroe' show

    Nude played a second season in the intimate black box theatre at the Alex Theatre St Kilda Aug 13-23 2015. With more songs, more stories, stunning costumes and set, complimentary lighting design and a more refined script, the show was a great artistic and collaborative achievement. We received national media coverage, with the likes of Triple J and The Age reporting on the season, as well as Broadsheet Melbourne.

    The show received glowing reviews from critics and the public alike. Here are just a few:

    "The writing by Kirchert is excellent, intelligent, engaging, fluid, almost academically philosophical prose" - read the full Theatrepeople review here.

    "Carina Waye has the aura of Marilyn, both in spirit and physical beauty" - read the full Australian Stage Online review here.

    "Nude is a gripping and tantalising evening in an intimate theatre that takes audience members into the past and into the intimacy of the thoughts, dreams, and regrets of an avatar – an extension of our own fantasies." - read the full St Kilda News review here.


    Nude is available for tour bookings. Please see our Touring Shows page for more information.


    About the show

    'Nude' - beneath the beauty spot - is one-woman show that puts a new spin on the stories and songs of the greatest sex star that ever lived: Marilyn Monroe.

    'Nude' will take you backstage and behind the scenes with one of the most iconic Hollywood celebrity figures of all time: beyond the publicity, beneath the beauty spot and the costumes.

    Prepare to witness the heartfelt journey of a human being with hopes, dreams, heartache, memories and love, in her quest to become desired and desirable.

    'Nude' features sweet and sexy tunes from the Marilyn Monroe's repertoire including "Diamonds Are a Girl's Best Friend", "Bye Bye Baby" and "My Heart Belongs to Daddy".

    Please note: this show contains nudity and is not recommended for persons under 12 years.

    What did people say about 'Nude'?


    Performed by Carina Waye
    Directed and Written by Jayde Kirchert
    Music Direction by Trevor Jones
    Produced by Glenn Ferguson
    Stage Management by Vicki Heilbronn
    Lighting Design by Peter Amesbury
    Design by Marc McIntyre
    Video & Photography by Worth A Shot Productions
    Executive Producer Jayde Kirchert
    Production interns Marc Angelovski & Millie Cooper

    Nude (2014 & 2015) is based on early conceptual developments undertaken by Jayde Kirchert & Carina Waye.

    View the trailer

    Our supporters


    Nude was supported by Creative Partnership Australia through MATCH Funding Program, The Ron & Marg Dobell Foundation, The Alex Theatre St Kilda and our 44 incredible supporters:

    Citizen Nick Backstrom, Citizen Alana Tranter, Citizen Kingsley McGlew, Citizen Josh Robson, Citizen Peter de Groot, Citizen Rebecca Moore, Citizen Nick Bunning, Citizen Stefanie Jones, Citizen Catherine Glavicic, Citizen Nina Barry-Macaulay, Citizen Helen Bell, Citizen Evan James, Citizen Tom Lambert, Citizen Symon Kerslake, Citizen Anonymous, Citizen Anonymous, Citizen Will Lime Balmford, Citizen Chenez Dyer Bray Paevere, Citizen Nicole, Citizen Nelson Gardner, Citizen Julia Doeven, Citizen Sasha Lipus, Citizen Vinay Kumar, Citizens The Cameron Family, Citizens Peter & Ann Welten, Citizen Isabelle Reynaud, Citizen Hannah Fredericksen, Citizens Leanne & Andrew Crane, Citizen Rory Godbold, Citizen Anonymous, Citizen Lauren McKenna, Citizen Matt Olver, Citizen Anna Freeland, Citizen Marita Duggan, Citizen Leonie Simpson, Citizens Chris & Leonie Howard, Citizen Dierdre Robertson, Citizen Brenda Waye, Citizen Megan Howard, Citizen Helen Howard, Citizen Anonymous, Citizen Hayley Sandpearl, Citizen Nicola Bramham, Citizen Kris Jones.

    Thanks to Creative Partnerships Australia’s MATCH program, every dollar given to this campaign was matched dollar for dollar!



    • Auslan interpreted show was held Saturday 22nd August 2015 at 2pm
    • Companion Cards were honoured.
    • A lift was available for people unable to use the stairs.
    • Script was made available prior to the show upon request for patrons with accessibility requirements. 



    The Importance Of Being Earnest

    The Importance Of Being Earnest

    Citizen Theatre reveals great depth of talent in their production of Oscar Wilde’s The Importance of Being Earnest
    — Jennifer Porter, Artshub

    Wilde’s classic play, The Importance Of Being Earnest was presented at Como House's stunning Ballroom in South Yarra. The well received production saw all 12 shows completely sold out. Read a review here and here.

    Creative Team
    Directed and co-produced by
    Jayde Kirchert
    Produced by Carina Waye
    Original music composed by Loclan Mackenzie-Spencer
    Costumes by Marc McIntyre
    Stage Management by Chenez Dyer Bray
    Music Direction/Merriman by Patrick Paevere

    Lady Bracknell by Jackie Rees
    John Worthing J.P by Rory Godbold
    Algernon Moncrieff by Nelson Gardner
    Cecily Cardew by Hannah Fredericksen
    Hon. Gwendolen Fairfax by Lauren McKenna
    Lane/Rev. Canon Chasuble D.D by Nick Backstrom
    Miss Prism by Catherine Glavicic

    This show was proudly supported by The City of Stonnington, with Citizen Theatre the recipient of the Arts and Cultural Sponsorship program to present this production. Many thanks also to the National Trust, Como House staff and volunteers, Grattan Gardens Community Centre staff, MTC, Australian Shakespeare Company, Mark Howard, Helen and Michael Howard, the entire Howard extended family, James Degenhardt, Marion Bernard and Brenda Waye for their help along the way.

    Thanks also to our suppliers for their co-operation and support: Ganache Chocolates (South Yarra), Tivoli Road Bakery (South Yarra) and Campbells Cash and Carry (Clayton).

    production snaps

    Photography by Thomas Overend


    Video by Heartless Corporation

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    Nude at the 2014 Melbourne Cabaret Festival

    Beneath the songs, the stories and the beauty spot of the blonde bombshell with the red carpet smile

    Nude at the 2014 Melbourne Cabaret Festival

    Beneath the songs, the stories and the beauty spot of the blonde bombshell with the red carpet smile

    premiere season at
    the 2014 melbourne cabaret festival

    The premiere version of Nude was an original cabaret that put a new twist on the stories and songs of Marilyn Monroe. It was performed on June 28-29 at the 2014 Melbourne Cabaret Festival at Chapel Off Chapel. Read a review here.

    Performed & co-produced by Carina Waye
    Directed, written & co-produced by Jayde Kirchert
    Music Direction by Trevor Jones

    Special thanks also to Ashleigh Voce (designer of select costumes), The Melbourne Cabaret Festival, Chapel Off Chapel, The Ron & Marg Dobell Foundation and those who offered their support and feedback throughout the first development process.

    Nude (2014 & 2015) was based on early conceptual developments undertaken by Jayde Kirchert & Carina Waye.

    Production snaps

    Photography by Kingsley McGlew

    trailer from premiere season

    Video by Heartless Corporation

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    Twelfth Night

    Nothing that is so is so...

    Twelfth Night

    Nothing that is so is so...

    This youthful company should be applauded for creating their own opportunity to showcase their talents. The performances and direction were confident
    — Shirley Jensen, Stage Whispers

    In December 2013 under former name, The Carving Theatre Company, Shakespeare's Twelfth Night was presented at Hares and Hyenas Bookstore. Read a review here.

    Creative Team
    Directed and produced by
    Jayde Kirchert 
    Original music by Chris Beasley
    Costumes by Marc McIntyre

    Viola by Alana Tranter
    Olivia by Hannah Fredericksen
    Maria by Isabelle Reynaud
    Feste by Nelson Gardner
    Malvolio by Evan Lever
    Antonio/Captain/Curio by Andrew Doyle
    Sebastian by Michael Nikou
    Orsino/Sir Andrew Aguecheek by Gareth Prosser
    Sir Toby Belch by Simon Alderman

    Thanks to Xtend Barre Melbourne for the use of their studios during rehearsals, the team at Hares and Hyenas and the many people who helped along the way.

    Production snaps

    Photography by Lucas Heil