09 Oct 2017


The Empire Theatre is pleased to announce the talented creative team which will be responsible for bringing to life the Gilbert and Sullivan family favourite, The Pirates of Penzance in March next year.

Leading the team as Director is Melbourne based and internationally recognized director Terence O’Connell.

Mr O’Connell’s experience encompasses some 150 productions as director across Australia and internationally with more than 50 of these being musicals, including Oklahoma!, The Pajama Game, Dreamgirls and The King and I.

Formerly an Artist in Residence and Guest Director at Ballarat University Arts Academy, Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts, and National Theatre Drama School (Melbourne), Mr O’Connell’s work is best known for it’s physicality and visual appeal.

Musical Director is Craig Renshaw, an experienced musician and conductor whose work spans both the stage and screen, working on touring musicals including Mary Poppins, Wicked, The Lion King and The Sound of Music as well as Australian Idol and The X Factor.

The creative team also features Brisbane’s Josh McIntosh as Designer. 

Mr McIntosh has previously been involved in major productions such as shake & stirs’ Wuthering Heights, and Animal Farm, as well as other popular productions such as James and the Giant Peach, andThe Empire Theatres 2013production of Hairspray and 2017 production of Wicked.

Rounding out the team as choreographer is George Canham, who has been building his dance and choreography repertoire for over ten years, having recently choreographed for the Empire Theatres production of Legally Blonde The Musical in 2016 and Wicked in 2017. 

Beginning his musical theatre career at Harvest Rain, Mr Canham has worked as Assistant Choreographer for various QPAC productions including Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, Jesus Christ Superstar, Grease, and The Wizard of Oz.

Empire Theatre’s General Manager, Kerry Saul said the creative team has been deliberately chosen to continue the process of development of  local artists by exposing them to different professionals, highly regarded in their field.

“Director Terence O’Connell has extensive national experience and Musical Director Craig Renshaw has worked on the largest musicals seen in Australia,” Mr Saul said.

“The opportunity for the creative team to pass on their knowledge and experience is fantastic for our community and we expect to be able to value add with some specific skills workshops over the rehearsal period as well.”

“We are very excited to have this team working together on Pirates of Penzance and we look forward to the highly entertaining and memorable show they will produce.”

The season of Pirates of Penzance is proudly supported by Heritage Bank.

Tickets for Pirates of Penzance are on sale now. For more information or to book your tickets, please contact the Empire Theatre on 1300 655 299 or visit www.empiretheatre.com.au