LITTLE ONES THEATRE is a queer theatre company formed by director Stephen Nicolazzo and designers Eugyeene Teh, Katie Sfetkidis and Daniel Nixon. Dedicated to investigating gender and queer aesthetics, Little Ones Theatre make works that are kitsch, camp, sensual, and erotically-charged.
From Oscar Wilde and Bram Stoker to Charles Busch and Christos Tsiolkas, Little Ones Theatre’s productions are a theatrical pastiche of cinematic, literary, and cult references that are colourful, wild, fierce, and visually striking. With high production values and a sacred love of camp, Little Ones adapt classic and contemporary texts in a variety of forms. Their primary focus is to queer text-based plays or devise poetic dream-like performances that are inspired by canonical queer writers.
Working with a key ensemble of ten performers, the company has developed its own heightened physical and emotional style since its inception in 2012, embracing the ridiculous, twisted and joyful possibilities of theatre.
Presenting works in association with Australia’s leading companies and festivals, Little Ones Theatre has toured productions to Sydney, Brisbane, and Darwin from their Melbourne home since 2012. The company has had sell out, critically acclaimed seasons across the country and presented works in association with Malthouse Theatre, Melbourne Theatre Company, Theatre Works, Griffin Theatre Company, Red Stitch Actor’s Theatre, MKA, Midsumma Festival, La Mama, Brisbane Festival, Darwin Festival, and Brisbane Powerhouse.
Little Ones Theatre have won 5 Green Room Awards, including Best Director, Best Set and Costume Design, Best Writing, Best Performer, and Best Female Performer. They have been nominated for a total of 24 Green Room Awards and a Sydney Theatre Award. In 2019, Little Ones Theatre was nominated for 4 Green Room Awards including Best Performer, Lighting Design and Sound Design & Composition. In 2018, Little Ones Theatre was nominated for a record 14 Green Room Awards, with all three of their 2017 productions, Merciless Gods, The Happy Prince, and The Moors up for the Best Production category.
The company’s works have been featured in Best of Theatre lists since 2012. In 2017, the company achieved a mammoth feat, having two shows (Merciless Gods and The Moors) feature in the Top 10 Theatre Shows of 2017 for The Age. All three of their 2017 works featured in best of lists around the country including: Time Out (Melbourne and Sydney), The Music, My Melbourne Arts, Sometimes Melbourne, and Kevin Jackson’s Theatre Diary. They have been featured in best of theatre and yearly round ups for The Age, Herald Sun, Sydney Morning Herald, and Time Out. Productions featured include: 2012 (sex.violence.blood.gore, Psycho Beach Party) 2013 (Psycho Beach Party), 2014 (Dangerous Liaisons), and 2015 (Dracula).
They were also listed in the Daily Review’s 21 Hot Young Theatre Makers for 2014.
Green Room Award Winner:
Best Director (Independent)
Stephen Nicolazzo, The Happy Prince
Best Set and Costume Design (Independent)
Eugyeene Teh, The Happy Prince
Best Performer (Independent)
Jennifer Vuletic, Merciless Gods
Best Writing (Independent)
Dan Giovannoni, Merciless Gods
Best Female Performer (Independent)
Genevieve Giuffre, Psycho Beach Party
Green Room Award Nominations:
Best Performer (Independent) Jennifer Vuletic, The Nightingale and the Rose
Best Lighting Design (Independent) Katie Sfetkidis, The Nightingale and the Rose
Best Lighting Design (Companies) Katie Sfetkidis, Suddenly Last Summer
Best Composition and Sound Design (Companies) Daniel Nixon, Suddenly Last Summer
Best Production (Independent) The Happy Prince, Merciless Gods
Best Production (Companies) The Moors
Best Director (Companies) Stephen Nicolazzo, The Moors
Best Performer (Independent) Paul Blenheim, Sapidah Kian, Merciless Gods
Best Actress (Companies) Alex Aldrich, The Moors
Best Lighting Design (Independent) Katie Sfetkidis, The Happy Prince
Best Lighting Design (Companies) Katie Sfetkidis, The Moors
Best Sound Design (Independent) Daniel Nixon, The Happy Prince
Best Director (Independent) Stephen Nicolazzo, Dracula
Best Ensemble (Independent) Psycho Beach Party
Best Director (Independent) Stephen Nicolazzo, Psycho Beach Party
Best Female Performer (Independent) Whitney Boyd, sex.violence.blood.gore
Best Sound Design (Independent) Claudio Tocco, sex.violence.blood.gore
Sydney Theatre Award Nomination:
Best Supporting Actress
Genevieve Giuffre- Psycho Beach Party
Stephen is a Melbourne based theatre director. He is the founder of Little Ones Theatre, an independent company focused on innovative queer theatre-making. Stephen studied at The University of Melbourne (2008) and NIDA (Directing, 2010).
He is a Green Room Award winner for Best Direction (The Happy Prince) and has been nominated a further three times (Psycho Beach Party, Dracula, and The Moors). His works have won 7 Green Room Awards and been nominated for a total of 30. Stephen was also the recipient of the Besen Family Artist Program award with Malthouse Theatre and a PlayKing funding award to work in Singapore with Wild Rice Theatre Company.
He has directed for Melbourne Theatre Company, Malthouse Theatre, Griffin Theatre Company, Red Stitch Actor’s Theatre, Arts Centre Melbourne, Brisbane Powerhouse, Brisbane Festival, Darwin Festival, Adelaide Cabaret Festival, Melbourne Cabaret Festival, Midsumma Festival, Theatre Works, Darebin Arts Speakeasy, MKA, and La Mama. His works have been critically acclaimed and toured to sold out houses across the country.
Directing highlights: Abigail’s Party (MTC), The Nightingale and the Rose (Theatre Works), Suddenly Last Summer (Red Stitch), Merciless Gods (Griffin Theatre Company/Darebin Arts/Arts Centre Melbourne), The Moors (Red Stitch), The Happy Prince (Griffin Theatre Company/La Mama), Playing to Win (Arts Centre), Meme Girls (Malthouse Theatre), Dracula (Theatre Works), Dangerous Liaisons (MTC Neon/Brisbane Powerhouse/Darwin Festival/Theatre Works), The House of Yes (Theatre Works), Special Victim (Adelaide Cabaret Festival), Salome (Malthouse Theatre), Psycho Beach Party (Theatre Works/ Midsumma Festival/Brisbane Festival), sex.violence.blood.gore (MKA/TRS), Negative Energy Inc. (Theatre Works/Midsumma Festival), Women of Troy (Cellblock Theatre), and Home Economics (The Store Room).
Stephen is also a teaching artist who is currently co-ordinating and lecturing for Monash University’s Centre of Theatre and Performance in Directing and Dramaturgy. His current projects include: Daddy by Joel Bray (Arts House), the Sydney tour of The Happy Prince (Griffin Theatre Company) and the development of a new work entitled Suspiria de Profundis.
(LIGHTING DESIGN/CO-ARTISTIC DIRECTOR)
Katie Sfetkidis is a lighting designer and performance artist living in working in Melbourne. She is the winner of a 2015 Green Room Award for her work on Meme Girls and has been nominated five times in her eight-year career. Katie has worked widely across the performing arts sector, for main stage and independent companies in Melbourne and Sydney and regional Victoria. She is highly involved in Independent Theatre community in Melbourne a current member of Little Ones Theatre. Her lighting work includes designs for: Sydney Theatre Company, Malthouse Theatre, Belvoir Theatre, Melbourne Theatre Company, Little Ones Theatre, Sisters Grimm, Fraught Outfit and Dirty Pretty Theatre.
In addition to her lighting design work Katie is a performance maker and video artist. In 2016 Katie presented Neon Sarcophagus – an exploration of near death experience as part of Triage’s ‘Hotel Obscura’ project for the Festival of Live, Art Melbourne. She has also presented work as part of the Festival of Live Art , Melbourne (2016 & 2014), Underbelly Arts Festival, Cockatoo Island Sydney (2013), Light Speculation, Lab 14 – Carlton Connect Initiative (2015) and Blindside Gallery (2012/13)
Katie is currently undertaking a Master of Contemporary Art at the Victorian College of the Arts.
(SET AND COSTUME DESIGN/CO-ARTISTIC DIRECTOR)
Eugyeene recently designed Endgame and Straight White Men for Melbourne Theatre Company, and Meme Girls and A Social Service for Malthouse Theatre, currently designing Blaque Showgirls opening in November. As a key artist for Little Ones Theatre, he has designed Dracula, Dangerous Liaisons for MTC’s NEON season, Psycho Beach Party , Salome for Malthouse Helium Season and The House of Yes. As the resident artist at MKA in 2012, he designed the set and costumes for sex.violence.blood.gore, The Unspoken Word is ‘Joe’ and Triangle. Other recent credits include Sydney Festival’s In Between Two, Melbourne Festival’s The Trouble with Harry, Palace of the End and Watch This Production’s Pacific Overtures. With director Adena Jacobs, he designed Elektra, Cleansed and Sydney Chamber Opera’s Exil.
With director Samara Hersch, he designed costumes for Next Wave’s Hello There, We’ve been Waiting for You and set and costumes for House, NOA and short film SUPER, currently touring film festivals globally. With Natalie Cursio, he designed Blizzard and Private Dances. For the 2009 Melbourne International Arts Festival, he designed sculptures for the Shelter: On Kindness exhibition with LAB Architecture.
Last year, Eugyeene undertook the placement in the Besen Family Artist Program at the Malthouse Theatre. Eugyeene has been nominated for five Green Room Awards for Meme Girls, Endgame, Triangle, The Trouble with Harry and Pacific Overtures. He is currently on the panel for the Green Room Awards (Independent Sector,) Poppyseed Festival and New Working Group.