New Zealand Artists & Organisations

Directory of New Zealand companies, organisations and individuals engaged in performing arts for/with children and young people


ATC MrNancy
Auckland Theatre Company

  • ATC Creative Learning supports theatre education and training with a focus on curriculum development, literacy and the arts. Activities for secondary schools include the Ambassador programme, school matinees, student and  teachers’ workshops and career pathways. For Primary schools the Mythmakers touring programme provides accessible inventive live theatre in schools and communities supported by workshops, activity packs and teacher training. The Company’s vibrant youth arts programme supports active participation in theatre-making processes for young people aged 15 – 25 years and includes the annual ATC Summer School, Young Writers’ Table and Here & Now Festival.
  • Established in 1992, Auckland Theatre Company is Auckland’s premier professional theatre company and one of the leading theatre companies in New Zealand. The Company presents a main-bill season of six to seven plays to over 80,000 people from throughout Auckland and the Upper North Island each year. Auckland Theatre Company is one of Creative New Zealand’s Arts Leadership organisations. It is also one of ten regional amenities considered an essential contributor to the wellbeing of residents in the Auckland region and necessary to make the region a vibrant and attractive place to live in.
  • Contact: PO BOX 96002, Balmoral, Auckland 1342
  • Website:

Birdlife Productions

Calico Young People’s Theatre
Snow Queen

  • Professional theatre for young audiences; theatre in schools; school production resources
  • Calico specialises in theatre for children, from professional school holiday and touring shows to large-cast community and school productions with young performers aged 5 to 15 years.

Capital E National Theatre for Children

  • Capital E ignites the creative spark in young people, through digital workshops, live performance and events. We are a not-for-profit organisation based in Te Whanganui a Tara, Wellington providing quality experiences to schools and public. In addition to our Wellington experiences, Capital E National Theatre for Children tours shows all around Aotearoa for schools every year.
  • Capital E National Theatre for Children has been dedicated to presenting professional theatre to children in New Zealand since 1997. In 2014-2015, Capital E have had over 100,000 visits to Capital E’s creative experiences.

Co Theatre Physical
Co Theatre Physical

  • Theatre for young audiences, circus arts, comedy, story-telling
  • Shows for all ages – preschool, primary and secondary – which combine comedy, balance acrobatics and story to entertain, educate and excite young audiences.

The Court Theatre

  • Theatre for young audiences, youth theatre, training, education, school tickets, school touring show, children’s theatre, internships
  • The Court Theatre Education Department runs numerous projects and opportunities for children and young people. With two youth Ambassadors from every Secondary School in Christchurch we offer an insight into theatre making and reflection. We house a talented Youth Company and Youth Crew who make work alongside our professional performers. Our highly successful holidays programmes offer children a chance to engage on a weeklong intensive drama training programme and our shows for schools, children and young people offer a chance to engage in theatre as a member of the audience.

Cubbin Theatre Company 

  • Theatre for the very young, theatre for under 5s
  • Based in Christchurch, New Zealand, Cubbin Theatre Company makes quality, playful theatre for the very young. Cubbin Theatre Company has been created from a desire to develop genuine theatre works for children under the age of 5.

Duffy Theatre

  • TIE, theatre for young people
  • Duffy Theatre has been performing in NZ Primary schools since the late 90’s. As part of Duffy Books in Homes, our theatre programme performs an original show in over 500 schools to nearly 100,000 students every year. The number one mantra is “it’s cool to read, it’s cool to achieve”. Our shows have a strong focus on reading and are always based around our central character, Duffy, who is a reading super hero and a role model to Duffy kids around the country. Production is based in Auckland but travels to schools all over the country in a tour that spans 10 months of the year.

EnsembleImpact National Schools Tour

  • Now operating as Y&H Tours. Please see the Young and Hungry listing below

Duck, Death and the Tulip
Little Dog Barking Theatre

  • Puppetry, mask, theatre for young audiences, training in puppetry and mask skills
  • Theatre for children specialising in Puppetry. Creates work especially for early childhood audiences in their spaces. Also creates work in Theatres and for Festivals. Material is often original but also the theatre has earned itself a good reputation for adapting books to the stage. The theatre has been very successful in staging works with puppets and mask. Music plays an important part in the creative process.


Massive Company
Massive Logo for Directory Listing

  • We are a professional contemporary physical ensemble company. We create new theatre with emerging and professional actors, directors and writers.  Our work comes from real stories, reflecting the rich diversity of Aotearoa.
  • We are also a leading company in developing young artists. Through access to free workshops and ongoing mentoring, emerging artists are able to become a part of the company from age fourteen and stay with us throughout their professional career. There are pathways through the company in the capacity of actor, director, writer and tutor, and Massive aims to create passionate artists who can flourish in their chosen area of the industry. Access is key to everything we do – all workshops are offered free of charge, rehearsals are open access should you wish to come and observe, and we offer koha/accessible ticket prices to our shows to encourage audiences from all walks of life to see world-class performances.Whānau is a key part of our kaupapa – you can join Massive at any stage of your career, work with us as well as with other companies, and always know that you will have a home here with Massive whenever you want to come back.



  • Dance, Drama, Music, Performance, Youth Leadership
  • Arts to support life skills and socialisation for former refugee background youth, mixing it up with migrant and local youth. Primary activities used are performing arts with professional guest artists – dance, drama and music. Core programme is run over 4 school term courses through weekend Saturday workshops. Youth Leadership mentoring programme also provided. Mixit is about empowering young people, providing access to creative opportunities and building networks.
  • Contact: Wendy Preston
  • Website:

National Youth Drama School

  • Youth theatre, training, film, screen, Shakespeare, acting, circus skills
  • The National Youth Drama School is an annual eight-day event held at Havelock North High School in beautiful Hawke’s Bay, New Zealand. It provides innovative, quality tuition through a wide range of classes. Students aged from 15 to 19 come from all over NZ and beyond, to learn about various aspects of theatre and film, meet new people and have fun.

Nelson Youth Theatre Company

  • Youth Theatre, Musicals, Performing Arts, One Act Plays, Backstage and technical; Direct, Musically Direct and Choreograph
  • Stages an average of 15 shows a year including 6 musicals including The Phantom of the Opera, Les Miserables, Chicago, Grease, and many Disney JR productions. Young people learn their craft “on the job” including opportunities to direct, musically direct and choreograph shows. Age range 8-25 years. 200th show/50th musical in April 2019.
  • Contact: 03 5488414;
  • Website: 

New Zealand Playhouse

  • Children’s theatre, youth theatre, theatre in education, performing arts, theatre in schools, primary school plays, high school plays, in school entertainment, travelling theatre
  • NZ Playhouse delivers educational, inspirational, extremely entertaining theatre to 750+ primary and secondary schools, (about 150,000 pupils) across New Zealand and Australia. Each year we deliver a primary and secondary show direct to the school. They’re highly interactive and many teachers tell us they’re the best theatre their students have ever seen.
  • Contact: 0800 894 500;
  • Website:

Taki Rua

  • Children’s Theatre, Kaupapa Māori, Te Reo Māori, Production, Script Development
  • Taki Rua produce, commission and develop theatre with a distinctively Māori voice. We collaborate with the brightest voices in our industry, touring productions both locally and internationally.
  • Contact:
  • Website:

The Road that Wasn't There
Trick of the Light Theatre

  • Theatre for young audiences, playwright, story-telling, puppetry, award-winning
  • Trick of the Light is an award-winning theatre company from Wellington, NZ founded by Hannah Smith and Ralph McCubbin Howell. We like to make theatre that is playful, inventive, thought-provoking, and that speaks to the here and now. Previous shows include The Road That Wasn’t There (Outstanding New NZ Play, Most Promising New Director and Production of the Year – Chapman Tripp Theatre Awards 2013), and The Bookbinder (Best Theatre, Best in the Fringe – NZ Fringe Awards 2014).


Tim Bray Productions

  • Theatre for young audiences, New Zealand stories, Youth Theatre, Theatre Workshops, Original playscripts and compositions, Arts Access – New Zealand Sign Language interpreted shows and Audio-Described performances
  • Established in 1991, Tim Bray Productions is recognised as Auckland’s leading theatre for children. We create world-class theatre for children most often based on New Zealand literature.
    We see live theatre as a way to engage children with literature, and to encourage reading. We know that theatre is more than “just” entertainment; we also see it as an integral part of children’s education, their growing up experiences, socialisation skills, and encouraging and exploring their imaginations.
    Our shows are supported by an ever-growing fan base, with shows being enjoyed by more than 20,000 people a year.
    We produce 4 shows per year as part of our standard season, housed in the quaint and picturesque setting of The PumpHouse Theatre, Takapuna. The timing of our shows is based around the school holidays, with shows playing throughout and a special education season 1-2 weeks before the end of term to provide the opportunity for school, home school, and early childhood groups to attend as part of their programme.
    We provide opportunities for children and young people to further engage and become involved in theatre through our Youth Theatre, Theatre Workshops and providing Q&A sessions with our casts and crews.

Young & Hungry Arts Trust


  • Youth theatre, training, education, school tickets, school touring show
    TIE, new play writing, playwrights, mentoring, workshops
  • Young & Hungry has been providing 15-25 year olds with a platform to experience, learn about, perform, produce and create great theatre for 25 years.
  • Y&H Tours (formerly EnsembeImpact) takes New Zealand theatre to secondary schools, universities and youth theatre groups around the country. Created to support the drama curriculum, it showcases a themed performance of excerpts from plays by New Zealand playwrights, tells New Zealand stories, addresses issues that are relevant to New Zealand youth, and employs young New Zealand actors at the start of their professional careers.
  • The Y&H Monday Meets are a chance to meet the industry, discuss issues, meet and work with peers, test out new work and help others try out their work in development. The Y&H rehearsal rooms are a flexible space to jump into the Y&H creative community.
  • Y&H Ambassadors has been running since 2003.  It introduces young people to the diverse range of live performing arts on offer in Wellington and provides students with the opportunity to find out what happens behind the scenes.
  • Contact:
  • Website:
  • Social Media:| @yandhwgtn

Footnote Dance

Java Dance Company

Kahurangi Māori Dance Theatre

Project Prima Volta

Shakespeare Globe Centre NZ

TAPAC – The Auckland Performing Arts Centre

Te Rākau Theatre

Ugly Shakespeare Company


Dan Bain

  • Theatre, physical comedy, video games, clowning, directing, writer, circus, comedy
  • Writer of GAMEPLAN, nominee best play for young people 2012, comission for Young and Hungry: “…witty, insightful, dramatic black comedy…” – Theatreview
    Writer, Director and Producer of PAINTBOX OF CLOWNS. “…audience contributions [are] more heartfelt and sustained than more predictable story telling generally captures.” – Theatreview
    “…the wonder of everyday things is timeless, and in the simplicity lies the charm.”
    – Theatreview
    WHY ARE MY PARENTS SO BORING? ” …an original story with depth and heart, and the interactions with the audience are genuine and story-driven. Highly recommended.” – Theatreview
  • Contact via Playmarket:
  • Website:

Tim Bray

  • Theatre for Young Audiences, director, producer, playwright, actor, youth theatre
  • Tim Bray, an Auckland actor/playwright/producer/director  who has been creating his own style of theatre productions in New Zealand since 1991. Tim founded The Central Theatre (now trading as Tim Bray Productions) in 1991.
    Tim is the Artistic Director of Tim Bray Productions and is responsible for guiding the company in terms of the creative, programming and business directions.  Along with being the director for many of the productions, Tim is the playwright for most of the scripts produced by Tim Bray Productions.  He has written over twenty-five plays for children, including ‘Pippi Longstocking’, ‘The Whale Rider’ ‘Hairy Maclary’, ‘The Velveteen Rabbit’, ‘The Little Yellow Digger’ and ‘Badjelly the Witch’. His scripts are available for production by other theatre companies by contacting Playmarket.
  • Contact:

Robert Dil

  • Children’s theatre, puppetry, musical theatre, arts education, theatre education, workshops, performing arts, Broadway Junior
  • Robert is passionate about advocating for children, the arts, literacy and education. He has written and directed professionally for the stage with the children’s performing group, The Polkadots. His stage shows have been seen at the Royal Easter Show and performed live by The Polkadots and Auckland Philharmonia.
    Robert has lived in Beijing, Shanghai and the Philippines. He is a puppeteer who studies with Sesame Street’s Jennifer Barnhart when in New York and he holds a masters degree (with distinction) in drama and theatre for young people. He is a freelance director, writer and musician.
    Robert lives in Wellington with his wife and three young children where he serves as the full-time Director of Performing Arts at St Mark’s Church School.
  • Contact:

Drama Magic

  • Playwright, theatre in education, stage sets and props construction, drama education consultant
  • Susan Battye of Drama Magic is a much published playwright of plays for young people and drama educational resources for theatre in education productions. She is the managing director of the company which designs and builds stage set items and scenery for schools and theatre companies on demand.
  • Contact: / PO Box 44161, Pt Chevalier, Auckland 1246

 Angie Farrow / After Eden Theatre

  • Plays for young adult performers
  • Angie Farrow writes plays for young adults. Her writing lends itself to a highly physical theatre style and works particularly well in school and youth theatre contexts.
  • Contact:

Granny Ploughing

  • Music, animations. 
  • From Robin Nathan, the producer of the award-winning FATCAT & FISHFACE CD series. Winner Best NZ Children’s Album 2013 – “The perfect mix of entertainment, originality and intelligence for young kiwis.” 
  • ANIMATED MUSIC CLIPS: DON’T SIT UNDER THE POO TREE (2014) invited to screen at film festivals in NZ, Melbourne, New York.
  • Contact:
  • Website:

Michelanne Forster

  • Playwright, TV script writer
  • Michelanne Forster’s scripts for children and young people have been performed by professional companies throughout New Zealand. She writes on commission and has a body of work available through Playmarket. Her most recent play for children, “The Butcher and the Bear”, was directed by Sally Blackwood of Jigsaw Theatre Company in Australia. Prior to this she worked with NZ director Ben Crowder and the Asian Arts community on a highly successful production of “The Secret of Dong Ting Lake.”
  • Contact through Playmarket:

Richard Finn

  • Children’s Theatre. Youth Theatre. Science Fiction Theatre. Writing commissions. Playwright. Director
  • Richard Finn has written multiple plays for youth and young audiences. These vary from one person shows through to large cast, and include musicals and Science Fiction plays. He writes on commission and has a body of work available through Playmarket. He has written, directed and worked for many years in education and can focus his work into various subject areas.
  • Contact through Playmarket:

Holly Gooch

  • Primary School Productions, Playwright
  • I write plays for whole of primary school production (ie: cast of 200-400 children aged 5-13 years). My play ‘Space Circus’ won the Playmarket Plays for the Young competition 2013 and ‘The Purple Sea’ was shortlisted in 2014. Both have been produced by schools and the third is due to be performed this year. I love to tailor plays specifically to schools including curriculum topics, local context and the make-up of the students in the schools. As a teacher and parent it is important to me that productions allow for all students have the opportunity to make a meaningful contribution, are logistically achievable for teachers, and are relevant and entertaining for both the performers and the audience. 
  • Contact:


Arts Development:

Performing Rights:

Associations and Networks:



If you are a New Zealand performing artist, or represent a New Zealand company or organisation engaged in performing arts for and/or with children and young people and you would like to be listed on this page, please get in touch: