About Us

Founded in 1992 by Simon Prast, Auckland Theatre Company opened its first production at the Watershed Theatre in 1993, the world premiere of Lovelock’s Dream Run, directed by Raymond Hawthorne ONZM. Led for the past 18 years by acclaimed Artistic Director Colin McColl ONZM and now new Artistic Director and CEO Jonathan Bielski, Auckland Theatre Company presents an annual collection of theatre shows as well as extensive education, youth, touring and new work development programmes. In 2022, we celebrate our 29th year of storytelling.

Participation

Our commitment to contemporary New Zealand theatre is reflected in our Participation programme.

Acts of Imagination are school matinée performances of our productions especially for students during the school term, presented
alongside workshops, Q&A forums with the artists, education packs and digital resources.

Auckland Theatre Youth Company is our development and training company for young people (16–23-ish) in Tāmaki Makaurau. Auckland Theatre Youth Company is a free programme for young performers, writers and artists of all backgrounds. Encouraging ambition, amplifying voices and supporting well-being, the Youth Company will train and create new work together across 2022.

Youth Night explores new ways to connect young people to the transformational magic of theatre, with a dedicated youth performance
of each of our productions, curated and hosted by our Youth Company. Youth Nights feature pre-show entertainment and exploration of the play and its themes from a young person’s perspective.

 

New Work

We support playwrights to create new theatre. In recent years, we have developed and premiered Things That Matter by Gary Henderson (2021), The Haka Party Incident by Katie Wolfe (2021), Yang/Young/ by Sherry Zhang and Nuanzhi Zheng (2021), Black Lover by Stanley Makuwe (2020) and Still Life with Chickens by D. F. Mamea (2017). We are delighted to have commissioned and developed The Made by Emily Perkins, making its world premiere in September 2022.

On the Road

We tour theatre throughout towns and cities in Aotearoa and internationally. In March 2022, Katie Wolfe’s The Haka Party Incident will play in Wellington at the Aotearoa New Zealand Festival of the Arts followed by visits to other centres throughout the year and Nancy Brunning’s Witi’s Wāhine will head to Northland audiences.

30 under 30

Under 30 years of age? We offer $30 tickets to any show any time; come on down and enjoy this specially priced ticket.

Celebrating our artists

To ensure the arts thrive in our city and beyond we are committed to nurturing both theatre-makers and theatre-lovers.

To invest in our talent we run artists workshops and programmes including the Engine Room Director’s paid internship, playwrighting workshops, play readings, dramaturg support for developing playwrights and summer school workshops for secondary school students.

Celebrating our history

Our first production opened at the Watershed Theatre in 1993, the world premiere of Lovelock’s Dream Run, directed by Raymond Hawthorne. Auckland Theatre Company has since gone on to present over 180 main stage productions.

We have performed in numerous venues round the city including the Kenneth Maidment Theatre, Q Theatre, The Watershed, Sky City Theatre, Civic Theatre, Herald Theatre and Basement Theatre but we always dreamt of having a place to call our own.

Rena Owen in The Pohutukawa Tree

The home of theatre

After seven years of fundraising, in 2016 we opened the doors of our new home, ASB Waterfront Theatre. Located in the heart of Wynyard Quarter’s new innovation precinct, ASB Waterfront Theatre is now a thriving hub of arts and culture. Auckland Theatre Company’s season plays at the theatre for up to 24 weeks of the year; this is complimented with the very best of both national and international dance, film and theatre.

Thank you

We give thanks to our extended whānau of subscribers who make what we do possible. We strive to reach the widest possible audience with our produced mainstage work, visiting company’s work and our numerous workshops and community programmes around Tāmaki Makāurau.

This is your city’s theatre company. Nau mai, haere mai. Everyone is welcome.

Archive

View production photos, programmes and cast and creatives credits from all of our shows - right back to 1993!

View archive

Laurel Devenie in A Doll's House

Behind the curtain

Ross McCormack in Amadeus

Period Costumes

Around the world, theatre designers and directors have grappled with how much period is too much when they stage productions set in historic times. Auckland Theatre Company’s veteran designer, Elizabeth Whiting, has designed costumes for numerous ATC productions since the company's very first show in 1993. A master of her craft, Elizabeth is very clear on what works for audiences.

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