Theatre 451 was a non-profit organisation which produced and promoted affordable and accessible theatre in the north-east of Melbourne. They needed a website that looks great, easy to maintain, and sells their fantastic plays to patrons.
The Covid-19 lockdowns have taken a significant toll on the entertainment industry, especially in Melbourne where the lockdowns lasted for more than 150 days with five separate lockdowns.
After not hearing from the organisation, the website was closed in August 2022. This sadly marked the end of Theatre 451 which brought to the suburbs around Eltham 20 plays since February 2014. After eight years bringing plays to appreciative audiences, Theatre 451's time has ended.
I only got to attend a couple of performances, which was unfortunate as I heard that they were received very well.
Some of their notable plays are below. Karen and I only made it to Arctic Fevers and Tejas Verdes. Arctic Fevers was sold with a "pie", so we were treated to a wonderful atmosphere of happy people plus a tasty pie. The "play and a pie" was loved by the audience. Tejas Verdes was well acted and staged, but I found it dark and confronting as it's about an important topic, political persecution.
This first play was sold under the promise of a "Pie and a Play", and Theatre 451 delivered well. Arctic Fevers was performed at Eira in Eltham (now Miss Pryor) on the corner of Pryor Street and Commercial Place. It was performed at St Andrews Hotel as well.
When charismatic moron Captain Edmonsonson and sensible misanthrope Elwood Fife find themselves trapped by an avalanche, they are forced to remain in the Arctic to await their deaths and, even worse, must get to know each other.
Tref Gare as Captain Edmonsonson
Neil Cooke as Elwood Fife
Kim Travers as Jacki
This was a double bill, making it a great night out.
Ally is in her apartment listening to music when a police officer calls. He is concerned for her safety; she is unsure why. A comedy of errors and craziness – you never know who’s watching.
A hilarious cyber-comedy where four virtual reality gamers discover that they can’t hide behind their online avatars in the real world.
Beers & Trees was developed and made with fourteen young adults through a facilitated workshop process and performed by a cast of five in July.
Since then, talented young writer Allee Richards has made further changes and given the play a whole fresh look to themes that include activism vs. apathy, told through the eyes of five very kooky characters.
Some people don’t care about the world’s injustices, or don’t care to know. Some people fight for everything. But mostly, people don’t live to either of those extremes.
Beers & Trees is a play about people who don’t do things, but not necessarily because they don’t care, and about the time they invite an activist they meet on a dating app over for dinner.
A comedy drama about wanting to make positive change, for the entire world or just for oneself.
Written by Allee Richards
Directed by Lisa Inman and Tref Gare
Developed with the assistance of Theatre 451
Presented at The Hut, Hurstbridge and La Mama, Explorations.
Luke Costabile, Adrian Del-Re, Julia Hanna, Caitlin Lavery and AJ Steele
Photos: Darren Gill.
By Fermin Cabal, translated by Robert Shaw.
Presented by Theatre 451 Young Adult.
A verbatim play, Tejas Verdes (‘Green Gables’), once a sea-side hotel, was an infamous Chilean torture and detention centre during the early Pinochet years.
Fermin Cabal’s humane and powerful play traces the life of a young woman who vanished one night in Santiago.
Presented at The Hut, Hurstbridge.
The site was built using the Ultimatum theme framework version 2.5.105.
Ultimatum has improved much since last time I used it. The forms plug-in made it easy to create a form that hides fields depending on the contents of other fields. Bootstrap has been now fully implemented and it works well.
The site features a landing page reached with www.theatre451.com. It’s dark theme sets the mood for the site and the monochrome images used throughout. When plays are on a few short words and a booking link can be added here at the top.
The home page indicates the main start of the site. Here more information about the current plays are shown. Side panels show the plays that are coming up.
Being based on Twitter Bootstrap the design is responsive and easily viewable on tablets and mobile devices; a must now given the increase in smart phones being used to access the internet.
As of early 2015 Google will give sites that are not mobile compatible a lower ranking than compatible sites for users who are searching from a mobile phone; so it’s more important than ever.
As the plays are rehearsed photos are taken and these are placed in an attractive gallery for prospective patrons to view.
All information is kept within two clicks of the mouse to make navigation easy.