2016  

- 2018

ABOUT THE BASEMENT 

ABOUT THE BASEMENT

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OUR STORY

Once upon a time (in 2008) at the bottom 
of Greys Ave there was an empty theatre… 

Silo Theatre had moved out after 10 years, 
and a group of actors, led by irrepressible 
Basement founder Charlie McDermott, had 
moved in. At first, to make ends meet they 
ran the space as a gig venue, squeezing in 
shows where they could and biding time 
until they could become a fully fledged 
theatre. 

In 2010, The Basement Theatre Trust was 
formed and with a little help from their 
friends: Foundation North, Auckland Council, 
Pub Charities, The Wallace Arts Trust (plus 
a bunch of favours and private donations, 
including a record breaking PledgeMe 
campaign) The Basement really started to 
grow up. They received support from CNZ 

to launch the Risk Share Model in 2013, 
and a year later added a bunch of artist 
development programmes to go with it. 

Despite years of trials and tribulations - 
dead rats left backstage after a metal gig, 
deliberate use of fire extinguishers during 
shows, audience members passing out, the 
rent doubling overnight, and a poo-cano 
(you actually do not want to know), The 
Basement team has kept going. They have 
built their little-theatre-that-could into the 
premiere development company in Aotearoa, 
combining flexible performance spaces with 
development opportunities that make a real 
difference in the lives of artists and the wider 
industry. 

They have done so because they, that is to 
say we, believe that the talent of emerging 
performing artists needs a place for fostering 
and development.

It’s here. 

The Basement Theatre Est. 2008.

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Since 

2013

 we’ve...

Co-presented 

170

 independent 

productions, 

56

 Auckland Fringe 

Festival shows, over 

90

 International 

Comedy Festival shows, and more 

than 

150

 events. Paid out more than 

$600k

 to artists, while saving them 

$100k

 in venue fees through the Risk 

Share Model. Had 

89,316 

audience 

members through the doors; hosted 

more than 

1,500

 practitioners; 

trained 

4

 Producers; and grown our 

business by

 47%

BASEMENT THEATRE

TRUST BOARD

MANAGEMENT COMPANY:  

BASEMENT 3.0 LTD 

Directors: Elise Sterback & Sam Snedden

REGISTERED CHARITY #CC46535

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RASHMI RAMAN

Chartered Accountant

MATT KENEALY (CHAIR)

Former CEO of major  

IT company

MICHELLE HINE

Actor, Director & Acting Coach. Artistic 

Manager of The Actor’s Program.

JOSH MCBRIDE

Barrister at Richmond Chambers

BASEMENT 

TEAM 2016

SAM SNEDDEN

BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT

MANAGER

GABRIELLE VINCENT

PROGRAMMING & ARTIST

DEVELOPMENT MANAGER

ELISE STERBACK

GENERAL

MANAGER

RONNIE LIVINGSTONE

TECHNICAL

MANAGER

DEANNA BORREN

SCHOOLS PROGRAMME/

COORDINATOR LOVERS LIAISON

CHARLOTTE VICKERS

BAR

MANAGER

NAOMI SPUNGEN

BOX OFFICE MANAGER /

MARKETING ASSISTANT

JULIE ZHU

PRODUCER IN

RESIDENCE

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Asst Bar Manager

Casual Bar Staff

Box Office Staff

Volunteer Ushers

Venue Technicians

BASEMENT & BREAKFAST 

 

 
Where we host a series of early morning 
readings/showings of work, both scripted 
and devised, with coffee and breakfast 
(patisserie) provided. Followed by a facilitated 
Q&A forum and questionnaire. 

PLAYSCIENCE!  

 
Paid workshops for new works programmed 
in our venue. With budget for actors, 
dramaturge and director. Designed with a 
flexible workshop structure that develops 
the piece in a way that is both rigorous and 
supportive of the writer or devisers. 

PRODUCERS DEVELOPMENT INITIATIVE  

 
A year long, paid residency which takes on 
an emerging producer for a year of intense 
on-the-job training as part of The Basement 
team. The Resident works on Basement 
initiated projects, independent productions 
programmed in our venue, as well as their 
own practice. During the residency they are 
mentored by top industry professionals.  

 

THE SCHOOLS PROGRAMME 

 
This initiative fully subsidises access to four 
Basement shows annually for our partner 
schools. Partner schools have their show 
tickets, transport to and from the venue, post 
show forums, education packs and a snack 
provided to them at no cost. Three shows 
are performed onsite at The Basement, and a 
fourth show is selected for a paid tour to the 
partner schools.

BASEMENT 

DEVELOPMENT 

PROGRAMMES 

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PLAYCHATS

 

 
A monthly meet up group with a new format 
in 2016 - a guest curator selects a topic (e.g. 
women in the arts) and holds a facilitated 
discussion. An opportunity for artists to con-
nect and discuss what is going on in the arts 
in New Zealand and internationally.

BASEMENT APPRENTICESHIPS  

 
We will broker a number of mentoring 
opportunities across the technical disciplines 
of Costume, Set, Lighting, Sound Design and 
Stage Management. The apprentices meet 
regularly with their mentors, assisting on 
productions that they are engaged in, as well 
developing their own practice. The Basement 
will match-make the apprentices with a 
production at The Basement, helping them 
to begin building a resume of professional 
experience and facilitating connections within 
the emerging arts community. 

TOURING INITIATIVE  

 
In partnership with BATS Theatre, we will 
provide opportunities for 2-5 companies 
annually to tour their shows to The Basement 
or BATS with financial support for touring, 
remount, and marketing costs, as well as 
access to mentoring provided by established 
companies who have touring experience and 
networks in each centre. 

COMING

Artists strive 

to take 

Basement to 

the Top  

NZ Herald 2016 

“The beating heart of 

Auckland Theatre” 

Metro Magazine 2014

100 Most Influential Aucklanders: The 

Basement Theatre Management Team

Metro Magazine 2015 

Top 100 things to 

love  about  Auckland  

NZ Herald 2013

BASEMENT 

IN THE MEDIA 

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“a test-bed for talent” 

    “Boom Times at the Basement” -  NZ Listener 2015

“One of the largest 

cultural hubs in the world 

could be influenced 

by one of Auckland’s 

smallest theatres” 

 

“Auckland inspires Kowloon” - NZ Herald 2016

“The most eclectic, 

exciting venue in 

town…” 

Metro Magazine 2013

Go Basement Team Planet  

NZ Herald 2014