Catastrophes – Renée Newman & Ella Hetherington
16 - 26 August 2023
PICA Performance Space

2pm & 7pm

Renée Newman & Ella Hetherington

It takes a village (or a f*cking good friend)

In Catastrophes Renée Newman and Ella Hetherington are brutally honest friends juggling imminent global collapse, parenthood and failing bodies.

The leading Boorloo (Perth)-based theatre makers invite the audience into their shame-free friendship as they share intimate and often excruciating truths across one chaotic, yet hopeful, hour of confessions.

Curated from five years of the pair’s text messages and conversations, Catastrophes reminds us that though the world may be ending, we are not alone.

Duration: 60 minutes, no interval
Content warnings: Some coarse language and references to countless catastrophes

Learning Resources

Hear from Renée Newman & Ella Hetherington about they’ve used elements and conventions of drama to explore personal and cultural issues in Catastrophes.

Accessible Performances & Events

  • Bubs in Arms and Creche | Saturday 19 August | 2pm
  • Auslan | Saturday 19 August | 7pm
  • Tactile Tour | Every session | 6:20pm & 1:20pm
  • Post Show Q&A | Wednesday 23 August | 7pm

Catastrophes is commissioned by PICA and supported by PICA’s Art Commissioners.


Wednesday 16 August | 7pm
Thursday 17 August | 7pm
Friday 18 August | 7pm
Saturday 19 August | 2pm | Babes in arms and creche
Saturday 19 August | 7pm | Auslan
Wednesday 23 August | 7pm | Post-show Q&A
Thursday 24 August | 7pm
Friday 25 August | 7pm
Saturday 26 August | 2pm
Saturday 26 August | 7pm

Babes in Arms and Creche

Saturday 19 August | 2pm

  • Baby-friendly session: no lockout, patrons may leave and re-enter the Performance Space as they need.
  • Baby changing facilities are located in the first-floor toilets.
  • On arrival, please see Front of House to store your prams and large bags.
  • PICA is offering a free onsite creche for children aged 3+. The creche will be managed by experienced carers, Abracadabra Childcare Services and be based in PICA’s studio 1.

Capacity is limited to 10 children and registrations are required. Registrations close when capacity is reached or by Friday 18 August, 3pm.

Parents and carers are encouraged to contact PICA prior to the performance to request any support you may need to attend. Please call Front of House on 9228 6300 or email

What to Bring

  • Snacks/water (no nuts, eggs, etc.)
  • Your children’s favourite book, toy, device
  • Prams for napping if needed and authorised by parents


Auslan Interpreted Performance

Saturday 19 August | 7pm

Auslan is a sign language used by Deaf and hard-of-hearing people and others who use it as their language of preference. In this performance, experienced Auslan theatre interpreters stand to the side of the stage and interpret the text and dialogue of Catastrophes into Auslan.

Tactile Tours

Available for every session | 6:20pm & 1:20pm

Led by the creative team of Catastrophes, this tour is designed for audiences who are blind or vision impaired. Participants have the chance to touch and examine the set and props of the performance.

Registrations are essential as places are limited per performance. Please call (08) 9228 6300 or email to secure your place.

Please note tactile tours do not include an audio-described performance.

Group 32
Group 29

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