Some Dumb Play

Written & Directed by Nathan Sibthorpe

pictured: Kieran Law, Bianca Zouppas, Cameron Clark, Claire Pearson. photo by Benjamin Bray

pictured: Kieran Law, Bianca Zouppas, Cameron Clark, Claire Pearson.
photo by Benjamin Bray

An exercise in remote-controlled theatre. With over 1.5 million different shows to vote for, we can be anything you want us to be…

Some Dumb Play is a mediatised performance work that asks the audience to vote in real time for what they want to see. A film-like story is presented, with desperate theatrically, over thirteen scenes. Before each scene the audience is presented with the choice of three stylistic or thematic variations. Using a local wireless network, they are able to vote via an interface on their own personal smartphones, for which one they want to be performed.

It’s a lot of fun at first. But after the novelty wears off, tensions begin to rise between what the performers want to show and what the audience wants to see. Eventually the characters become forgotten, and the scenes start to disappear, until all that is left is a story of people not getting what they want.

It’s far from dumb. In fact, it pushes technological and theatrical boundaries... Some Dumb Play is actually That Amazing Play.
— OffStreet Press
At the end of the day, it is actually an absurdly fun show. Something to be both admired and enjoyed. You don’t know what’s going to come next, if it’s going to work or if it’s all part of some twisted plan.
— Australian Stage
There is something deeply disturbing about walking away from an experience and realising you have been had and that was how I felt as I walked away from the Metro, numb and feeling abused and shamed. That was the moment that I realised that this ‘play’ was something quite brilliant.
— Aussie Theatre

Production History

Originally developed through QUT in 2011, with special thanks to Sandra Gattenhof & David Megarrity.

Public production at Metro Arts in November 2012, supported by the Allies Program. Also supported by the JUMP Mentoring Program (in 2012, Nathan was mentored by Sam Haren, then the artistic director of The Border Project).

In 2013, Queensland Theatre Company hosted a third creative development, focussed on script and dramaturgy. Lucas Stibbard supported Nathan as a dramaturg and associate director. A work-in-progress showing was presented with Kieran Law, Belinda Raisin and Steven Rooke during December, 2013.

A revised version of Some Dumb Play with 3 performers and tighter script is available for further development or presentation opportunities.


Full Credits

Written & Directed by Nathan Sibthorpe

Performed by - Cameron Clark, Kieran Law, Toby Martin, Claire Pearson, Bianca Zouppas.
Producer / Production Manager - Kristen Trollope
Lighting Designer - Hamish Clift
Software Developer - Ben Murray
Technical Coordinator - Candice Diana
Stage Manager - Bec Lawes
Assistant Director - Essie O'Shaughnessy
Assistant Stage Manager - Jaya Crothers

JUMP Mentor & Dramaturg - Sam Haren
2013 Dramaturg - Lucas Stibbard

Past Collaborators -
Rachel Bishop, Kevin Bolt, Lucy Kelland, Tiarnee Kim, Eloise Maree, Alex Miles, Belinda Raisin, Errin Rodger, Mia Schack, Jake Shavikin, Nicole Smith-Stanley.