Theatre and Dance Platform

Theatre and Dance Platform: engaging with Australian performing arts collections

Cummins, Virginia (photographer). (2003). Production Image of Lucy Guerin's Plasticine Park 1. [Photograph]. Theatre and Dance Platform.

The Theatre and Dance Platform (TDP) is a digital repository at the University of Melbourne which houses and showcases significant Australian theatre and dance collections and resources.

By preserving archival documentation, the Theatre and Dance Platform acknowledges and provides access to important facets of Australia’s performing arts heritage, including the stories of key individuals, companies and institutions. It hosts a range of digitised material, including photographs, scenic and costume designs, video recordings, posters and textual material such as programmes, reviews, correspondence and related research, and is easily searchable by key words and standard catalogue terms.

Key collections in the Theatre and Dance Platform include significant materials and records from the University archives, e.g. La Mama Theatre and Union Theatre as well as unique digital content that belongs to artists and companies external to the University, e.g. Lucy Guerin Inc. It also includes research resources that have been developed by scholars at the University of Melbourne. Researchers can access these collections through the Theatre and Dance Platform as well as from Trove, the National Library of Australia’s search engine, and AusStage, a database of Australian live performing arts, or individual company websites.

With the establishment of the Theatre and Dance Platform in 2017, the University of Melbourne shares its century-long engagement with the performing arts sector, that extends to support for theatre companies, student theatre, indigenous arts and the Melbourne creative sector. The Theatre and Dance Platform with its digital collections makes Australian theatre and Dance now available to the global research community and general public.

Curated by Professor Rachel Fensham and Andrew Fuhrmann, the Theatre and Dance Platform is supported by staff in the University Library and we thank Jane Miller, Andrew Veal, Gillian Butcher and other volunteers for their assistance.

We welcome suggestions, corrections and further contributions to these collections. Please email or

A short video describing the approach to building the interoperability of the Theatre and Dance Platform is available here.