About Playback

Playback Theatre is a unique improvisional theatre with no script. The material for the performance comes from the audience. Assisted by the conductor, who holds a performance, people in the audience share moments and stories from their lives, which are then immediately re-enacted or “played back” spontaneously by a troupe of usually four actors and a muscian.

Actors and musician take on roles in a dramatic form and, using dance, movement, mine, music, dialogue, sound and imagination, the story or moment is played back in a creative and magical re-enactment. No Playback performance is like any other and no-one quite knows what to expect when they walk through the doors. That is the spontaneous nature of Playback, for actors and audience alike.

Communities and organisations use Playback to build their community, enable sometimes untold stories to be brought forward, acknowledge joyful and painful times and to value the contributions of people in their community. In essence Playback provides a unique opportunity to listen, learn and build on each others’ personal and community story.

Brisbane Playback Theatre Inc began in 1989 when Francis Batten initiated the Company. Since then many people have been part of the troupe, honouring people’s stories. Our members come from many disparate occupations and professions and are involved because of their love of this unusual, challenging, inspiring, inclusive form of theatre. Playback companies exist around the world and throughout Australia.

anna and ger clapping