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Company History

Five Kinds of Silence

Radio to Stage

Shelagh  Stephenson

fortyfive downstairs

Melbourne, AU


Film to Stage

Sally Potter

fortyfive downstairs

Melbourne, AU

Manbeth: Macbeth Amplified


Shakespeare's Macbeth

fortyfive downstairs

Melbourne, AU

Pale Blue Dot

An original work

by OpticNerve

Malthouse Theatre

Helium Season

Melbourne, AU


by Robert Lepage and Marie Brassard

Directed by Tanya Gerstle

Theatre Works

Melbourne, AU



The Mill on the Floss

by George Eliot

Adapted by Helen Edmundson

Directed by Tanya Gerstle

Theatre Works

Melbourne, AU



In 2006 Artistic Director Tanya Gerstle initiated OpticNerve Performance Group to create works with a physically dynamic improvisational approach called Pulse.


Both this rehearsal practice and its theatrical outcome is unconventional and has attracted an ensemble of actors and creative technicians who currently work in film, television and on the main stage.


The OpticNerve ensemble of performers, directors and creative technicians train together, seeking to hone their skills and further develop their unique performance language of theatre creation.


Ensemble training and experimenting with collaborative practice has always been at the company's core. Our Residency model achieves the company's aim of combining theatrical process, performance practice, performer training and audience engagement in an intensive, immersive experience.


Past Pulse Residency Trainings include:


Penn State University, USA, 2003

University of York, UK, 2011 and 2012

Manchester School of Theatre, UK, 2011

Caledo-folies Les Invompressibles, New Caladonia, 2011

University of Caen, France, 2011

Interstice #6: Caen Improvisation Festival, 2011

International Physical Theatre Festival, Liverpool, UK, 2012

Theatre Works, Melbourne, Australia, 2016 and 2017
including Behind Closed Doors in 2016 and 2018.

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