HIGHWAY OF LOST HEARTS by Maryanne Butler, 19-20 Nov @ Bathurst Memorial Entertainment Centre

A woman. A dog. A campervan. And 4,500 kms of wide open road.

Mot wakes up one morning to find that her heart is missing from her chest. She can breathe; she has a pulse—but she feels… nothing.

So, she decides to go and look for it. With her Dog enlisted as co-pilot, Mot heads down the Highway of Lost Hearts: into the deepest core of the Australian outback—navigating red dirt landscapes, fire and flood, brittle dry-ness, vast salt lakes, age-old mountains and murky waters filled with lost souls.

An allegory for a country that’s lost its heart, Highway of Lost Hearts, by award-winning Darwin playwright Mary Anne Butler, is half gritty road journey, half magic realism and all heart. It leaves you pondering the question: when your heart goes missing, what lengths will you go to, in order to find it again?

Bathurst’s own Lingua Franca in collaboration with BMEC present this truly regional story, in a brand-new production starring theatrical powerhouse Kate Smith, with original live music by Central West icons Smith & Jones.
This project is supported by the NSW Government through Create NSW.



Parklands  @ Romanos – Sound and light installation and operation.

Local Stages promotional video, Local Stages @ BMEC – direction and edit.


Plug & Play Band Night, Civic Theatre @ Romanos – Sound and light installation and operation.

ROUTES Playwriting Development Program, Bathurst & Penrith – Script development director for two new plays.

Living With Lady Macbeth, McKillop College school production – Technical Direction.

Mr & Mrs CSU, Charles Sturt University Bathurst – Sound, light and AV install & operation.

Allensworth, Little Alberts, The Victoria – Sound & lighting install & operation.

Man on the Mountain, Andy Nelson Album Launch  – Sound & lighting install & operation.

Jess Jennings Labor Party Fundraiser, Little Alberts, The Victoria – Sound & lighting install & operation.

Royal Hall @ The End Festival, NSW National Parks & Wildlife – Providing and operating all technical requirements for the evening ticketed music and cabaret venue.

The Vampires, Samsara Productions @ Little Alberts, The Victoria – Sound and light gear install and operation.

Smith & Jones Album Launch, Something Worth Learning – Co-ordination and management, Event design, Tech support, documentation.


KANGAROO, 9 – 10 July @ Bathurst Memorial Entertainment Centre, 7 Aug @ Cowra Civic Theatre & 13-14 August@ Q Theatre, Penrith

Three strangers, intricately entwined by the events of one fateful night.

In a small regional town, three people share their own funny, yet tragic, stories that cause their lives to converge.

Melissa, a mother at 18, escaping a home life with an emotionally abusive father. Her daughter is now 5, and Melissa is coming to realise that history is repeating itself.

Mick, an enthusiast for his work – tending the sewage facility and collecting the town’s garbage. Once a bright child, betrayal by a trusted adult forms his home-grown philosophy about life’s disposability.

Barbara, a former university lecturer in art, who has made a fresh start in the town with her investment speculator husband. Settling into country life, her academic understanding of death is confronted by the reality of life and death among rural animals.

Kangaroo is a truly classic Australian gothic tale of regional and personal isolation. The funny and damaged characters are vibrant, engaging and reflective of the diverse experiences of life outside of the metropolitan Australia. The script is three monologues magically woven together, creating a poetic and compelling new, one act Australian play.

With a truly rural energy, this play talks to personal isolation that people irrespective of their relationship with the country can connect with. These monologues are magnificently woven, subtly revealing each character’s part in the death of Kane Heckford – none realising the others’ role in the act or subsequent cover up.

The underlying themes of familial abuse and our communities’ ineptitude to deal with violence, is cleverly embedded in the work without being bluntly political. This production will privilege the emotional journey of the characters, leaving the audience with a satisfying, compelling and confronting theatrical experience prompting reflection on revenge, loneliness, violence and rural Australia.

Central West Short Play Festival

Central West Short Play Festival Founder / Artistic Director / Co-ordinator / Mentor (since February 2011)

Organising & coordinating playwriting and directing workshops for the community. Overseeing all performances, technically and artistically, to maximise the quality of the work while supporting (and sometime mentoring) directors as well as other creatives in the projects.


2018 – One year Residency Program with 10 participants as a part of the Local Stages @ BMEC program (supported by Regional Arts NSW through CASP funding).

2017 – Mentorship of two emerging regional writers and directors as a part of the Local Stages @ BMEC program.

2015 – SnapShorts regional touring production of locally written and directed work as a part of the Local Stages @ BMEC program.

2014 – Supporting short play seasons around Central West NSW with development workshops and technical support (our partners Local Stages @ BMEC, Orana Arts, Arts Out West, Kalari-Lachlan River Arts Festival, Bathurst Theatre Company, Mudgee Performing Arts Society, Western Plains Theatre Company.

2013 – Writing workshops and touring short plays around the Central West developed for the inaugural shorts season in Bathurst.

2012 – Regular writing and directing workshops (supported by Regional Arts NSW through CASP funding).


ArtState Bathurst, Regional Arts NSW – Opening Ceremony Creative Director and Producer.

Golden Women – Producer, AV & graphic design, Technical direction.

In collaboration with Kim Deacon with support from the Hill End Arts Council, the National Parks & Wildlife Service NSW & Bathurst Regional Art Gallery , this multimedia presentation , using live music, soundscape, text, light and moving image explored the powerful contribution women made to the harsh, frontier gold rush landscapes, with each story presented in a different space  within the exquisite gold mining town of Hill End.

Winter Festival, Bathurst Fossil & Mineral Museum– artwork and consultancy for outdoor projection.

Tremain’s Mill Heritage Art Prize Exhibition, Tremain’s Mill – Lighting the for inaugural art prize exhibition in the found space of an old mill.

Tremain’s Mill Light Bazaar, Tremain’s Mill – Technical design, production and operation of the one night event.



Bathurst Writers’ & Readers’ Festival, Local Stages @ BMEC & Books Plus – Technical support and documentation of local content sessions.

Royal Hall @ The End Festival, NSW National Parks & Wildlife – Providing and operating all technical requirements for the evening ticketed music and cabaret venue.

Central West Short Play Festival, Local Stages @ BMEC – Co-ordination and direction of the year long residency program and regular weekend events.



Our Town, MacKillop College Bathurst – Technical support, lighting & projection design, documentation.

four, Lingua Franca Solos Development Project – Providing technical direction, mentorship and support for the 4 solo artists to explore themes of their own choosing through a 3week process, culminating in a public performance.

CSU Game Show Extravaganza, FirstDegree Program CSU – Providing technical direction and design for the live streamed event including video content creation, set design and construction, venue and lighting design. Event technical operation.

River Arts Festival, Forbes Shire Council & Kalari Lachlan River Arts Festival – Festival event planning, budgeting and marketing, Site/Technical/Production Management of the Lakeside Celebration day.

Making It Alone Development, Adam Deusien – Production technical support and documentation.

Condobolin Military Tattoo, Tattoo Committee –  Technical Support and Documentation including live feed video, sound and supplementary set lighting.

Mr CSU Talent Show, Charles Sturt University ResLife –  Providing technical direction, operation and design for the event including light design.

Artshed’s Invincible Exhibition, Arts out West – Providing  technical support for an all abilities art exhibition and performances in the found space of an old mill.

Whispers in the Grass Development for Cementa 17, Annemaree Dalziel  – Lighting and documenting the first development/exploration performance.

Dementia & Palliative Care Tour, Health Western NSW  – Technical Direction and Stage Management for a one week tour discussing the dementia journey including verbatim theatre readings alongside specialist geriatrician, Jane Tolman to discuss the ways dementia can present, how to respond and how to care for the Carer.

The Hill End Table Exhibition @ Bathurst Regional Art Gallery, Lino Alvarez and Kim Deacon – Filming and editing the artist talk and exhibition to be used at future launches of the accompanying book to the exhibition.

Royal Hall @ The End Festival, NSW National Parks & Wildlife – Providing and operating all technical requirements for the evening ticketed music and cabaret venue.

The Cancer Journey, Health Western NSW – Event/Technical Management and Video Production for an information day held to discuss the Cancer Journey including verbatim theatre readings alongside clinical explanations of the process of cancer treatment by healthcare specialists. We documented the presentations and edited the footage to be used as a resource for Daffodil Cottage, Bathurst.



Mighty Development 1, Lingua Franca – Production management, lighting design, documentation

Dags by Debra Oswald, MacKillop College Bathurst – Technical management, lighting design, documentation, student mentorship

Unsustainable Behaviour,  for the 2016 Artlands Festival Lingua Franca / Local Stages @ BMEC – Production management, lighting design, documentation

Mystique, Cowra United Fusion (collaborating with Mitchell & Orange Conservatoriums and Canberra Youth Theatre) – Technical design and management, video content creation

We Always Wanted to Be Professional Dancers, Big One Little One  – Bathurst season lighting design, event production management, documentation

Burlesque Cabaret with Imogen Kelly, Hill End Arts Council – Production and technical management and design

Earlier Collaborations

Other collaborations have included;

Kim Deacon’s Home Sweet Home – the Women of Lawson’s Life (Independent music and multimedia touring theatre production 2015/16) Technical direction, operation and documentation.

Kalari Lachlan River Arts Festival (Forbes 2015) Liaising with the community and Council to create a large biennial community festival. Focused mostly on gathering and planning and implementation of all the infrastructure within budget, event lighting design, mentorship for programming and general festival organisation.

Snapshorts (touring production of local short plays to Bathurst, Mudgee and Dubbo, 2015) Artistic direction and Tour co-ordination. Below is one of the 9 plays that toured with Snapshorts;

Clique (youth physical theatre and dance project in Bathurst and Cowra, 2014) Production management, Technical design and operation.


The Death of Kings (Sydney – Mardi Gras, Bathurst – Mardi Gras Outreach program, Melbourne – World HIV Conference, 2014) Technical direction and operation.