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Theatre in the Suburbs - Centenary Theatre Group - From the Beginning (1976 - 2007) PDF Print E-mail

On Friday 15 August, Cr. Jane Prentice lauched the book Theatre in the Suburbs, a history of the Centenary Theatre Group (from the beginning 1976 - 2007).    Two of the founding members, Penny Douglas and Barry Jacka were in attendance, along with many current members of the CTG. 

The Book was written by Gail Burke (ably assisted by Janet Barnes, Jan Read & Sue Watson) and was produced on behalf of Centenary Theatre Group to share its sense of purpose and record the Group’s performances as the community theatre in the Western Suburbs of Brisbane since 1977. At the same time the Group reflects on its heritage within the proud tradition of Australian community theatre. In so doing the book commemorates CTG’s 30th Anniversary.

The history has been presented by decades, from the 1970s to the 2000s. A Prologue places CTG within the context of the history of community theatre in Australia. As well, when researching and recording CTG’s history, other pertinent subjects presented themselves. They are: some memorable behind-the-scenes anecdotes; CTC’s outreach into the community; a view to the future by current President, Margaret Bell; a list of notable members which include CTG Presidents, Life Members, award winners and those who have gained entrance into the National Institute of Dramatic Art (NIDA); a Vale section; and finally, a history the Chelmer Community Centre – home of CTG.

Copies of the book are $15 (plus $2 P&H).   If you would like to purchase a copy, e-mail Margaret on  This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or call 0418 157 552.


Gail Burke began her interest in theatre as a student of speech and drama during her school days.  From 1960-75 she was an active member of the Port Moresby Arts Council Theatre. During this time she studied theatre and drama at two universities in USA, where she won a best actress award.

After settling in Brisbane she joined Centenary Theatre Group and served as Treasurer for several years. She was awarded Life Membership in 2001.  Since her stroke in 1999 Gail has published four books of which Theatre in the Suburbs… is her latest.

Gail Burke passed away on 1 January 2011. 

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