Breaking the Castle

Venue Lennox Theatre
Dates 07 April - 09 April 2022
Category Theatre

Riverside Theatres Presents
The Street Theatre’s
Written and Performed by Peter Cook
Directed by Caroline Stacey

I tried dying and it didn’t work…I might as well try living now.

David can’t get enough, of anything. Alcohol, drugs, women, gambling – whatever it takes to escape the bark of the black dog. Consumed by an overwhelming feeling of never belonging anywhere, days and nights are lived through a thick haze of drugs and alcohol. This bender could be his last, but he doesn’t care – there are worse things than death.

Then David is thrown an unlikely lifeline. Finding himself in the mountains of South-East Asia he is offered a chance at redemption – but he will need to confront his inner demons, traumas and secrets long buried.

Visceral, fierce, funny and uplifting Breaking The Castle features a gripping performance from creator Peter Cook of a man yearning for connection. Directed by Caroline Stacey with The Street’s award-winning creative team this is an exquisitely rendered story of hope, belonging, and finding a way to be in this world.

Join us for a post show Artist Talk with Peter Cook on Saturday 9 April at 4:15pm. The Artist Talk is a free event, however, bookings are essential.

*Please contact Box Office directly for group bookings of 8 or more, email or call 02 8839 3399.

Performance Warnings: 
This production contains coarse language, drug references, and mature themes and smoke haze and is recommended for ages 15+.

If you are unwell, please stay at home. Please review our Patron Safety & Entry Guidelines before you visit us at Riverside.

As per the NSW Public Health Order (that is place from 11 October), Riverside Theatres will require anyone aged 16 years and over to be fully vaccinated unless lawfully exempt.

QR code check-in – all patrons and their guests must check-in upon entry.

Bring and wear a mask. Patrons aged 12 and over attending performances are required to wear a mask.

Patrons will be seated in line with NSW Public Health Order and/or Guidelines in place at the time of the performance occurs.

If you have any questions and would like to discuss this with a member of our team, please contact our Box Office staff on 02 8839 3399 or email

Thank you for keeping our community safe.


Promotional Photo by Helen Fletcher 

Writer Peter Cook
Director Caroline Stacey
Designer Imogen Keen
Lighting Designer Gerry Corcoran
Sound Designer Kimmo Vennonen
Starring Peter Cook

About The Street

The Street Theatre is Canberra’s award-winning home of live storytelling and performance in the ACT. An essential part of Canberra’s cultural and imaginative life The Street is a major investor in new theatre and music work in Canberra over the last decade. Just as Canberra is considered a petri-dish for new policies, ideas and cultural products within the broader national landscape, The Street serves a vital role as a key generator of new work and regenerator of place and community within the nation’s heart political heart.

A creative powerhouse located in Canberra’s City West, we commission, develop, produce and present live performance work that talks to the world we live in now. We employ some of the finest and much-loved creative talent in the region as well as from Canberra’s creative diaspora. The Street brings distinctive and diverse Australian stories to the stage. Original works developed and produced include: Twenty Minutes With The Devil, Milk, Breaking The Castle, Flight Memory, Epitaph, Icarus, The Weight of Light, Tourmaline, Cold Light, The Iliad Out Loud, Pigman’s Lament, The Faithful Servant, The Chain Bridge, From a Black Sky, M.P., Bartleby, Where I End & You Begin, How to be (or not to be) Lower, In Loco Parentis, Johnny Castellano is Mine, The Jade Harp, and Underage House Party Play.

The Street Theatre is the recipient of a 2020 Sidney Myer Performing Arts Award for outstanding achievement.

“His experience is not depicted as being so unique that it could have only happened to him; rather, his is the tale of just another person trying to make a place for themselves in this world. It humanises those who are often ignored and encourages a philosophy of compassion – a laudable achievement for any creative work.” – New Territory

“Peter Cook’s play about addiction and recovery, ‘Breaking the Castle’, succeeds because of the quality of the writing, the extraordinary performance of Peter Cook himself and the strong production by the director, Caroline Stacey, and the technical team at The Street Theatre.” – Canberra Critics Circle

“For the first time in years, that took me out of the theatre, was my companion’s verdict. This was an incredibly powerful work that was a privilege to see.” – Stage Whispers

“In many ways Cook’s play answers the question – why theatre?” – Canberra City News

“An incisive text about addiction drawn from real life was heightened by stunning design elements. Director Caroline Stacey has shaped a performance facilitated by Imogen Keen’s deceptively simple yet highly evocative set, Kimmo Vennonen’s visceral sound design and Gerry Corcoran’s striking lighting design. Breaking the Castle has the power to transform through its writing, acting, design and relationship with its audience.” – Canberra City News

“Incredible play by Peter Cook. Honestly. It’s mind blowing.” Ginger Gorman – the investigative journalist with heart

“Breaking the Castle is the theatrical reckoning we need at this time, completely re-framing of our relationship to vulnerability. Delivering a powerhouse performance, Peter Cook creates cracks in the dam wall of audiences with his honesty, humanity, humour and courage.” – Karla Conway, HotHouse Theatre

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Dates and Times:

Thursday 7 April 2022 at 8pm
Friday 8 April 2022 at 8pm
Saturday 9 April 2022 at 2:30pm (Artist talk at 4:15pm) 
Saturday 9 April 2022 at 8pm

Join us for a post show Artist Talk with Peter Cook on Saturday 9 April at 4:15pm. The Artist Talk is a free event, however, bookings are essential. 


1 hour and 30 minutes with no interval

Ticket Prices

Concession $41
30 & Under $35
Concession $45
30 & Under $39
Groups 8+* $45

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