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A view inside the beautiful worlds we imagine for ourselves

20 - 29 May

PACT, 107 Railway Parade, Erskineville

“ Politis and Rose provide a tenderness to the treatment of their subjects, that moves us to a certain state of empathy; both for those on stage, as well as the persons we are, silent and contemplative in our respective seats.”


“Tiny Universe is a compelling communication of our emotions, thoughts, and personalities; offering the idea that despite our uniqueness on the outside, maybe we aren’t so different on the inside.”

Comprising 60 years of impact in the Australian arts landscape, Shopfront Arts Co-op and Milk Crate Theatre joined forces on a bold new intergenerational work, Tiny Universe, which premiered at PACT Centre for Emerging Artists in Erskineville from May 20 – 29.

Co-directed by an award-winning team, Shopfront's Creative Director, Natalie Rose, and Milk Crate Theatre's Artistic Director, Margot Politis, Tiny Universe explored the delineation between inner and outer worlds – what we present to the world, and what is actually happening behind closed doors. It invites audiences to consider what we carry with us through life, and how that changes over time. What are the rituals we perform, the modicum of self-soothing that occur in our own little corners of our lives?

Who are we – and how do we cope - when no one is looking, especially if we feel there is something about ourselves that makes us different from others? Do we ever get used to the uncertainty that life throws at us?

Through conversations with “self”, Tiny Universe reveals how we reckon privately with social pressures, systems, and expectations, through the exploration of set, space, movement, lighting, and text.

The devised work reflects both companies’ commitments to championing the voices of artists from underrepresented communities and backgrounds. Through this new partnership, Shopfront and Milk Crate Theatre will bring forward the stories and artistic expression of young people and people with lived experience of homelessness, mental health issues, and disability.

“The most wonderful thing about this work is the collaboration between the two companies, the artists and the creative team,” said Shopfront’s Creative Director Natalie Rose.

“The process has proven that regardless of lived experience, we are all the same. We share the universal – we all want to feel safe and be the best versions of ourselves whenever we can.”

Milk Crate Theatre’s Artistic Director Margot Politis described her excitement at “bringing our dynamic theatre organisations together on this project,” explaining that the performers are all “exploring the very painful as well as the very funny experiences of life – and the reasons why sometimes it is easier to just hideaway.

What we’re finding is that the issue of self-discovery is something that affects us at all stages of our lives – maybe when we are older we just get a little more used to the uncertainty.”

The production has been developed in collaboration with a team of cast and creatives, including Desmond Edwards, Harrison Bishop, Lana Filies, Lily Hayman, Lisa Griffiths, Matthias Nudl, Steve Konstantopoulos, and Nick Vagne, and will feature the work of revered composer, James Brown, lighting designer Liam O’Keefe, and support artists Lucy Watson.


Directors: Margot Politis, Milk Crate Theatre and Natalie Rose, Shopfront Arts Co-op

Composer and AV Design: James Peter Brown

Lighting Design: Liam O’Keefe

Set Design: Margot Politis

Performers: Desmond Edwards, Harrison Bishop, Lana Filies, Lily Hayman, Lisa Griffiths, Matthias Nudl, Steve Konstantopoulos, Nick Vagne

Production Manager: Tyler Fitzpatrick

Key Support Artist & Performer: Lucy Watson

Guest Artist Facilitator: Kay Armstrong

Contributing Artists: Owen Gill, Brianna Lowe, Mallory Sedger, Aaron Nasir & Tiffany Wong

Set Construction: Will Jacobs, Sophie Ward & Jeremy

Set Assistant: Sam Read


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