Sanctum Theatre | Community
Sanctum Theatre is a Melbourne-based visual performance ensemble presenting folk theatre in everyday spaces since 2006.
Sanctum Theatre, Lachlan Plain, puppets, performance, theatre, theater, Melbourne, Australia, visual, site specific, roving acts, Magic Lantern
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Community Projects

Sanctum Studio works with community groups and schools to devise performances in everyday spaces. We work with children, youth, families, ethnic groups, ESL classes, and people experiencing disability or mental health issues.

We build giant puppets, large sculptural lanterns and create performances with light and shadow. We build something from nothing and nothing from something. We re-animate and re-mystify local landscapes in the communal imagination. Participants are challenged in a nurturing space to achieve what they think is not possible.

Montsalvat Solstice 2014

Sculptural Lanterns

In 2019 we partnered with Little Projector Company and Williams Landing Residents Association to present Trail of Lights Festival, a community-led lantern and light festival  along the Federation Trail in Williams Landing and Truganina, Victoria, Australia.

The 5-day festival program included illuminated roving acts, lantern workshops, installations by Wyndham artists and decorative lighting by the local community. Sanctum Studio worked with 200 children to build 50 large sculptural lanterns for the parade, which were then installed along the trail.

In 2013 and 2014 Sanctum Studio worked with local families at the Eltham Living and Learning Centre to create several giant sculptural lanterns for Montsalvat Solstice Celebration and Bonfire, presented by Festive Fires.

Click here for photos.

Giant Puppets, Masks & Shadow

We have created all kinds of performances with various community groups over the years, including giant puppets, shadow puppets and masks:

  • In 2019 we created a giant starfish for DVA Theatre‘s Spin me a Yarn of the Ocean and the Invisible Dances.
  • In 2018 we created a giant puppet show in Harmony Square, Dandenong, in partnership with Fusion Theatre, as part of City of Dandenong’s [SUB]URBAN program.
  • In 2016 we created masks for Barking Spider Theatre’s Unmasked project.

Click here for photos and video.

We have worked with DVA Theatre (Banyule), Fusion Theatre (Dandenong), Springvale Community House, Hawthorn Community House, Kew Uniting Church, Montsalvat and Eltham Community House. Artistic director, Lachlan Plain, also has extensive experience working with communities in Swan Hill, Sunshine, Croydon, Thailand and South Korea, as a People Puppet Project director for Snuff Puppets.

Sanctum Theatre was awarded an honourary mention at the Victorian Government Live Local Awards for their Enchanted Ark zero project at Hawthorn Community House in 2010.

To book a Zero Project for your community please contact Lachlan Plain on (+61) 432 103 538 or

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