Wood Wide Web at ArtPlay in 2021

Our BIG NEWS is that we have an exciting project coming up next year at ArtPlay Wood Wide Web – exploring the secret life of trees with 3-5 year olds. CLICK HERE to visit the ArtPlay New Ideas Lab page. If you feel like a giggle, of to be inspired, CLICK HERE to visit our […]

Art in a time of COVID

Barking Spider Visual Theatre is adapting to the rapidly changing circumstances brought about by COVID-19. We are presenting a series of online works and projects with and for people across Australia-wide. So please hang tight, take care, and we will have art to you soon.

Forgiveness in China and Kaidan in Colac 2019

In two week’s time, Barking Spider Visual Theatre and St. Mary’s Primary School, Colac proudly presents “Kaidan”- an evening of spooky and goose-bump driven entertainment. This event is the outcome of our Creative Victoria, Creative Learning Partnership. In October, partnering with Monash Centre of Theatre and Performance, we present “Forgiveness”. This is a short season […]

In a Heartbeat – At La Mama Courthouse, September 5-9, 2018

Five performers Five tea-party settings Five  simultaneous performances One  immersive theatre experience (with cake and tea) CLICK HERE to go to the La mama website for more info. In a Heartbeat is an intimate piece of theatre for a small audience.  


We’re very pleased to announce that the next art installation has just been locked in: OYSTER. To be held at Testing Grounds, as part of the National Gallery of Victoria July-August programme MEL&NYC. Opening Friday July 20th –August 8th OYSTER is an art installation of oyster shells that displays this decline and current restoration of […]

The Sound of Cancer, Wheeler Centre – November 1

The Sound of Cancer is being presented by the Wheeler Centre next month. CLICK HERE for tickets.

The stats are up

It was indeed a massive year for this little arts company…. Check out these stats! EVENT COUNT: We generated and presented 133 events TOTAL AUDIENCE COUNT: 67,754 YOUNG PEOPLE: 40,090 JOBS FOR ARTISTS: 108 REACH States: Victoria, New South Wales, South Australia – including regional tours and metropolitan/city work. AWARDS: Shortlisted for two 2017 MAGNA […]

Give a Spider a leg-up?

The end of the financial year is nigh. If you can support Barking Spider with a donation big or small, you will make a difference to the communities we are working with in 2017-8. People living with cancer, people with mental illness, the elderly, people with dementia, and as always – young people. CLICK HERE […]

The Sound of Cancer

We know what cancer looks like – but what does it sound like? This incredible science-arts collaboration, supported by the City of Melbourne, is well underway. Check the blog for the latest story CLICK HERE

Jellyfish en route to Charleville Mezieres International Puppetry festival

In conjunction with Black Hole Theatre, Barking Spider presents our newly designed Jellyfish puppets – premiere performance at this prestigious international festival. Bon chance to all the puppeteers making their way to Europe!

May is the time to fill the ears, eyes and bellies

Hungry for Italian food and culture? One Suitcase: Four Stories starring Linda Catalano opens May 13th as part of Darebin Homemade Food and Wine Festival. May 13-17 ABC Radio National’s Sound Proof programme and Barking Spider have created a version of The Memorandium for Radio – on air in May (dates to be announced soon). […]

Psychopomp & Seething – Reviews are rolling in…

“Actors James Cerche, Nicola Grear, Aislinn Murray and Lindsay Templeton are the four storytellers. Each bring a remarkable emotional understanding to their stories. With writing that isn’t a simple narrative and direction that ensure the wholeness of the picture, they bring all of themselves to their story while working together like a musical quartet to […]

Opening soon: Psychopomp & Seething

Barking Spider Visual Theatre in association with MUST presents Psychopomp & Seething – a compelling double bill of two short works for a small audience.Season: FEBRUARY 18 – MARCH 1, 2015 Wed 6.30pm & 8pm | Thu 6.30pm & 8pm | Fri 6.30pm & 8pm Sat 6.30pm & 8pm | Sun 4pm & 5.30pm At  […]

Does size matter?

For a little company, we have kicked major goals. The stats are in – Barking Spider has hit a new high! Over the financial year 13-14, our artists and production team have generated and presented 126 events, engaged 42,000 audience members, and created 197 jobs for artists. You’ve seen us in Victoria, New South Wales […]

New York here we come!

Barking Spider Visual Theatre heads to New York, to take part in “Bite the Big Apple” (BtBA). BtBA is a programme for a select group of Aussie artists and arts managers to meet up with hot-to-trot New York arts companies – Galleries, Museums, Theatres etc. So look out! Our artists will be back in mid […]

Liberty of the Press

Tickets now available: CLICK HERE for the main event. CLICK HERE for the salon style talk.

Tasmanian Museum and Arts Gallery Residency & Sydney Festival Opening Night

The company is half-way through an incredible residency at TMAG. Artists Penelope Bartlau and Jason Lehane are creating an Antarctic world, through research and through interactive play with children.  CLICK HERE to have a look at the blog on the project and HERE for the site page. Our Giant Illuminated Jellyfish just opened the 2014 […]

The Memorandium, Giant Jellyfish and the Biscuit Readings at Lorne Festival

LATEST NEWS: Three of Barking Spider’s shows are on at Lorne Festival September 2013 Click Here for info  

Giant Jellyfish Cometh!

We have a new aquatic fascination… As of August, Barking Spider has 3 gigantic jellyfish to roam. Check the Roving Works page for info.

Dandenong West Primary School (DWPS) and Barking Spider Visual Theatre: A day out at Heide Museum.

On Friday December 7th, the children and teachers involved in Barking Spider’s, Arts Victoria funded Extended School Residency The Next Big Thing came to visit Heide Museum. The visit was supported by Heide, and was an incredible opportunity for these kids and teachers, most of whom had never been to Heide before.  The day was […]

Barking Spider, Heide Museum and Regional Arts Victoria 2013

We are pleased to announce that for 2013, Barking Spider will present Scratch Trash Orchestra for the RAV programme, and, for this same programme, in collaboration with Heide Museum, we will present The Heide Portable Classroom. Scratch Trash Orchestra is where kids learn about sound, music and orchestras, and then create their own instruments from […]

Barking Spider at the National Museum of Canberra on Australia Day

This weekend Barking Spider Visual Theatre is presenting an Australia Day event at the National Museum of Canberra. The work has been developed for the Museum’s  Big Objects On Show exhibition. This is a very exciting partnership for the company, as is our first museum partnership in the Capitol. There will be  puppetry and percussion, […]

Spiders at The Village Festival

The Village Festival just wheeled through Fitzroy again, and Barking Spider presented our bearded ladies in Beardo – A Tableaux Vivant, and introduced Anastasia the Bold, the company’s newest roving work. Anastasya is a mad Russian woman with way too many ex husbands, who tells stories about a collection of odd objects, and then divines […]

Robeson St Street Party

In City of Darebin, Penelope Bartlau, Caitlyn Barclay and Stefanie Robinson worked on the Robeson St Party, facilitating local in the painting of large canvas street signs, and in the creation of a street stories and memories postcard. Messy, colourful community celebrations indeed.

Snap! Crackle! Pop!

Meanwhile, in Buxton, near Marysville, another festival was underway, and artists Justine Warner & Glen Walton headed up with no less than a kilometer of bubble wrap, to present our newest workshop Snap! Crackle! Pop! Puppet making for the pop addicted. Huge fun for the 400-strong crowd in attendance.

Giant Butterflies alight at festivals

After a magnificent re-jig by Barking Spider designer Jason Lehane, our Giant Butterflies Penelope & Ulysses went to PoppyKettle Festival in Geelong, piloted by Paul Bongiorno & Stefanie Robinson and to City of Stonnington’s beautiful Spring Garden Festival (with Leah Scholes & Penelope Bartlau behind the wings).


Penelope also ran a beautiful All Hands On The Puppet workshop for the ArtPlay School Partnership Programme, with a small group of kids from Carlton Primary School.


Penelope attended the YPAA conference in Sydney and got the lowdown on everything that’s happening in the Youth Arts sector, and on the way dropped in to Mildura (ok – it’s not on the way, but that’s how it worked) – and ran some Character Archaeology classes for kids up there. This was part of […]

Heide Museum

At Heide Museum we have had holiday and Children’s Week art-meets-theatre workshops – kids kicking up a storm with paint and play – run by artists Erin Tappe and Heidi Wetherald.

The Short Pants rise again

Over September we performed Short Pants No Holes in Montrose for the Shire of Yarra, and also for the City of Dandenong in Noble Park. Performers Rachel Edward & Penelope Bartlau wowed their audiences with feats of carrot puppetry (no vegetable crisper is safe in those areas ever again).

Theatre Works & Extended School Residency

At the start of Spring, we finished up two massive works – The Memorandium season at Theatre Works, and The Next Big Thing, our Extended School Residency production with Dandenong West Primary School.

The Next Big Thing – We Made it Ourselves

The best feedback in the world! This year, with support from Arts Victoria, we had an Extended School’s Residency with Dandenong West Primary School. Ninety children, from year levels 4 & 5, participated in the creation of a hybrid work, using art installation, sound design, puppetry and physical theatre. Children created a series of four […]

The Memorandium

The Memorandium – Season 2012 This year, with support from Arts Victoria and the Ian Potter Cultural Trust, we developed and present a season of The Memorandium at Theatre Works. We completed a residency at Fitzroy High School (FHS), after developing and rehearsing the work at the school with selected students. “The mood in the […]

Beardo – A Tableaux Vivant at Coburg Carnevale

Bearded Ladies out & about “I loved the ladies smiles and eyes – the way they hid revealed SO much!Denise Santos, Coburg “Made me want to grow a beard – If only I could!” Natalie Swain, Brunswick “If only this was on during Melbourne Festival, it would show what Melbourne’s arts scene is truly made […]

Barking Spider at Heide Museum of Modern Art for Mother’s Day

Barking Spider Visual Theatre presented Tea & Secrets in the Heart Garden at Heide. It was a beautiful, poetic and inspirational event. While sipping chamomile tea in the library of Heide 1 people wrote down heart-thoughts and posted these in Sunday’s letterbox – here are some (posted anonymously): Sunday Reed at the Window in Heide […]


We created our new Big Butterflies: Our gorgeous new butterflies – Penelope & Ulysses, took their maiden flights on at the AlburyCity Picnic in the Gardens event in November, and have been flitting about other events around Victoria ever since. CLICK HERE to see them at the Northcote Kris Kringle Market, and HERE for the […]


Home – Albury Library-Museum & Art Gallery – “Home”, was a hybrid-arts project for children and adults, integrating art and historical objects in an exploration of what “home” means. The project combined visual arts, theatre arts, history and interactive storytelling for children and for adults. In 2010 BSVT collaborated with Hoa Pham in her development […]


In 2009 we created “The Biscuit Readings”, a one-on-one interactive theatrical work which has performed at various festivals and events in Melbourne, regional Victoria, Sydney, Tasmania and in Adelaide at WomAdelaide in Feb ’10. At the Regional Arts Victoria AGM in Dunkeld, Victoria, Coburg Carnevale and Kew Courthouse Arts Launch most recently. Sponsored by Arnott’s. […]


In 2008 we produced “The Keeper”, with Canberra artist Chrissie Shaw, funded by Arts ACT. “The Keeper” had successful seasons at Canberra’s Street Theatre, La Mama, Melbourne, and is currently touring regional Victoria (RAV Funding) and NSW. In June ‘08 we created two children’s shows commissioned by the Immigration Museum: “Chinese Shadow Tales” for the […]


In 2007, we toured “Hatch”, a puppetry work for children, to three major Arts Festivals in India, with support from DFAT/Australia Council, Visy and the Handspan Visual Theatre Travelling Scholarship. In this year BSVT travelled to Europe where various company members collaborated with Czech puppeteers for a performance of “Windows” at the Prague Quadrennial. Also […]