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Australian Theatre of the Deaf

Australian Theatre of the Deaf (ATOD) aims to make a unique contribution to Australian culture by creating daring and bi-lingual theatre for the hearing and the deaf. In so doing, it hopes to promote understanding and awareness of cultural difference and increase the audience for deaf cultural expression.

Established in the early 1970s and Australia's first professional deaf company, ATOD performs in a variety of styles and techniques including, visual theatre, visual vernacular, sign singing, shadow interpreting and mime.

ATOD’s significant achievements include:

  • Devising and directing school productions which tour nationally (at least three shows per year since 1979)
  • Production of the first Australian Deaf musical, The Sign of the Phantom (1995)
  • Performance of the bi-lingual play, Deaf and Gay, at the Sydney Mardi Gras Festival (1999)
  • Performance of a Deaf cabaret show, Dislabelled at the Adelaide Cabaret Festival (2002)
  • Three month Australian tour of Dislabelled (2004)
  • Production of the original production There and Back at Sidetrack Theatre (2005)
  • Commissioning and staging of The Cat Lady of Bexley, a new work written and performed by Sofya Gollan and directed by Caroline Conlon (2006)
  • Adelaide Fringe Festival (Theatre in Schools Program, 2008)
  • National Multicultural Arts Festival (Theatre in Schools Program, 2008)
  • High Beam Festival (Theatre in Schools Program, 2008)
  • Establishment of the annual National Drama Camp for Deaf young people (2008).
  • Staging of the new physical theatre work The Wild Boys directed and created by Caroline Conlon starring local and international Deaf artists (2008)

Read about the history of ATOD

Read some Frequently Asked Questions about ATOD