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Photography by Clare Hawley

the cardinal rules


Presented in partnership with MerrigongX 

31 October - 2 November 2024

Bruce Gordon Theatre

32 Burelli St, Wollongong NSW


The Cardinal Rules is a eulogy to the parochial parishioner; a nostalgic work of storytelling and a reckoning with an upbringing in the Australian Catholic Church circa 1990. Be transported into a suburban Canberra parish through the eyes of our dedicated eleven-year-old parishioner. She questions, queries, and quite innocently mocks the church’s theatrical rituals with her child’s play.

Rose Maher leads an ambitious team, interrogating the broader question of the individual’s complicity in the proliferation of the power structures that dominate our lives.

Lead Artist Rose Maher

Performers Rose Maher, Alison Bennett, Jane Phegan

Director Ali Gordon

Sound Designer Gail Priest

Production Manager Andrea Espinoza

Producer Alex Travers

The Cardinal Rules has been developed on Dharawal Country at Merrigong Theatre Company in Wollongong NSW through the MerrigongX and Performing Lines Digital Arts Residency in 2020, with mentoring from Kate Champion. Since then, MerrigongX has supported a further two development residencies in 2021 and 2022-2023.


The Cardinal Rules is supported through a residency at Theatre and Performance Studies, the University of Sydney, Erth Visual & Physical Inc and Shopfront's Open Shop Program 2024.

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