Fourteen-year-old Danny Fisher is coming of age at a time when his city faces the threat of extinction. But when his beloved brother Frank is killed in the Pacific War, Danny's family is ripped apart.
Ignored by his grieving parents, Danny meets an American pilot identical to his dead brother. And as the American teaches him how to fly, Danny comes up with a dangerous plan to prove his own worth.
Ripe with emotional resonance and heart-breaking comedy, Danny Fisher is a celebration of a childhood and a city – and a requiem for all that was lost.
Danny Fisher was first performed by Queensland Theatre, as Brisbane, in a celebrated large-scale production at the Playhouse Theatre, QPAC.
Ryan's script is rich, textured and very funny at times... This is a winner.
THE COURIER MAIL
A testament to just how vital and engaging even historical theatre can be...
A surprisingly riveting, insightful and accessible self-portrait of some of the city's most turbulent days.
THE CREATIVE ISSUE
Image by Rob Maccoll | Featured Dash Kruck
Designer Stephen Curtis | Lighting David Walters
Ned Kelly is about to hang for his crimes.
But his final night in jail is interrupted by the arrival of his brother Dan, disguised as a priest. Supposedly killed in their infamous shoot-out with police, Dan wants to forget his past and move north. To do so, he needs Ned's forgiveness.
But the last time they saw each other, Dan tried to shoot Ned dead.
So begins a brutal non-stop confrontation between two titans of Australian history. Entwining fact, theory and myth, Kelly is a complex tale of masculinity, brotherhood and the dangerous dynamic of mateship.
Kelly was first performed by Queensland Theatre at the Cremorne Theatre, QPAC. It toured Australia nationally, receiving a Helpmann Award nomination for Best Touring Production.
Kelly is a beautifully conceived character drama... Ryan's stupefyingly good script is poignant and to the point... Kelly is a subtle, smart imagining of Ned Kelly's last night alive, charged with unfulfilled potential and torturous regret, and deeply moving to the bitter end.
SYDNEY MORNING HERALD
Shines a spotlight on the relationship between the brothers in a way we've not seen before in the history of Australian storytelling… A stunning, exalting and truly authentic piece of theatre.
Image by Rob Maccoll | Featured Steven Rooke
Designer Simone Romaniuk | Lighting Ben Hughes
A young homeless girl hides from danger in an old rundown bookshop.
Safe from the city outside, the girl becomes entranced by the mysterious shop. Every book is written by the same writer and a large apple tree grows in the corner. Then the owner emerges from the shadows, a giant old man in a giant old wheelchair.
The lonely girl tries desperately to win the old man's favour - until the day she finds a woman's dress covered in blood.
Co-written with David Morton, The Harbinger is an adult fairytale written for bunraku puppetry.
The Harbinger was first performed by Dead Puppet Society, receiving a sold-out season in La Boite Theatre's mainstage season before touring Australia nationally with Critical Stages.
The Harbinger finds a way to bring meaning to a world starved of love… Beautiful, haunting and touches the rim of the extraordinary.
A fascinating and tightly woven story... It will play with your mind, delight and raise the hairs on the back of your neck… The Harbinger is darkly enchanting and enthralling… Magical and stirring theatre.
Image by Al Caeiro | Featured Kathleen Iron
Designer David Morton | Lighting Whitney Eglington
This is the story of Thom and Alethea, two neighbours trying to keep their respective lives from falling apart - until the Wall between them decides they belong together.
And so begins a whimsical whirlwind of laptops in love, sock puppet nightmares, sugar-fuelled time travel, magpies from hell, ponderous power boxes and distant stars about to go supernova.
Co-written with Lucas Stibbard, Boy Girl Wall is the story of everyday life and the infinite cosmos, with over two dozen characters created for one single virtuosic performer.
Boy Girl Wall was first performed by The Escapists at Metro Arts. It received two sold-out seasons at La Boite Theatre as well as seasons at Hothouse Theatre and the Adelaide Fringe. It toured Australia nationally with Critical Stages and was performed in Melbourne Theatre Company's Studio Season, receiving a Helpmann Award nomination for Best Actor.
Tightly structured, funny and ultimately quite touching, it is a work that captures the power of the imagination and uses it to create engaging and entertaining theatre.
Comic genius… A blissful reminder of the power of imagination.
Image by Al Caeiro | Featured Lucas Stibbard
Designer Jonathon Oxlade | Lighting Keith Clark
Life was supposed to work out differently for Foster Jones. Dreams of travelling the world were put on hold to support his overbearing and unemployed father, Bob.
But when a Christmas Lights Competition offers a hundred thousand dollar prize, the neighbourhood goes to war. Houses are decorated and displays are sabotaged. And while Bob battles the snobs across the road, Foster finds himself caught between betraying his family and escaping his father once and for all.
A whimsical tribute the Australian suburbs, Summer Wonderland has become a favourite Christmas treat for theatre companies across Australia and New Zealand.
Summer Wonderland was first performed by La Boite Theatre in a hugely successful extended season.
Summer Wonderland's farcical silliness comes up shining… The script sparkles with little gems of Christmas lore and psychological observation.
THE COURIER MAIL
A true blue parody of life's trials and tribulations… Intensely funny.
Image by Justine Walpole | Featured Louise Brehmer
Designer Jonathon Oxlade | Lighting David Walters
All of Jerry's dreams are about to come true.
But as he competes for the top job at his advertising company, strange things begin to happen. Office desks start chasing him. A self-help tape starts talking to him. And umbrellas rain from the sky. Haunted by the ad campaigns that made his career, Jerry struggles to keep his life and his mind together.
All he's ever wanted is within his grasp. But when you lock your life in a briefcase, don't be surprised the day it wants out.
Chasing The Whale received its professional premier at La Boite Theatre, as The Dance of Jeremiah, after a season at the Australian Theatre For Young People in Sydney.
Ryan has created something special… A highly original crowd-pleaser and an intricately layered examination of human frailty.
THE COURIER MAIL
Bold new comedy with a lunatic edge… An insanely funny theatrical treat… Yet there's a poignancy lurking beneath the shenanigans and a message in the madness. Don't miss it.
Image by Justine Walpole | Featured Hayden Spencer & Georgina Symes
Designer Jonathon Oxlade | Lighting Jo Currey