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Red Scare Theatre Company was founded in 2013 by Cassandra Tse and Bruno Shirley. We were undergraduate students looking to get our first musical, Right Dishonourable, onto the stage, and called our nascent organisation “Red Scare Collective” as a tongue-in-cheek reference to our socialist leanings and the political content of our first show. During that production, Erin Thompson and Freya van Alphen Fyfe joined the Red Scare family and would be crucial players in our next few productions.

In 2017, we rebranded to Red Scare Theatre Company to more accurately represent our organisational structure, and James Cain joined the team as Marketing Director, while Cassandra took on the role of Artistic Director. As Red Scare Theatre Company, we decided to move away from show-to-show programming and start planning full seasons of work in advance, ensuring that our programme would include a balance of original New Zealand plays and NZ premieres of international work.

In 2018, we officially registered as a charitable trust. While many of the founding members of the company moved overseas, Cassandra and James continued to lead Red Scare with a renewed focus on celebrating playwrights and musical theatre writers. Both playwrights themselves, they understood the difficulties inherent in taking a new play from script to full production, and wanted to support other playwrights to make that leap.

Today, Red Scare is a key pillar of the Pōneke theatre scene, and our company has been able to produce the world premieres of plays by many local writers including Matthew Loveranes, Kieran Craft, Ben Wilson and Abby Howells. We are proud to have been producing the very best in contemporary scripted theatre for over a decade.


Cassandra Tse
Artistic Director

James Cain
Associate Director


Aimee Ferszigan
Cassandra Tse
Ellie Stewart
James Cain
Michael Stebbings

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