Text on image reads 'QSE Core Ensemble'

The Queensland Shakespeare Ensemble is an artist-run company. The Core Ensemble, as the name suggests, is the heart of QSE, and drives its artistic and business activities. Experienced professional actors that are interested in being part of the Core Ensemble are encouraged to apply for an audition. QSE may or may not be taking on any new Core Ensemble members in 2023.

Applicants for the Core Ensemble should be familiar with QSE’s work and activities, and ideally will have some previous experience with QSE’s training. It is unlikely that an applicant who has not previously performed or trained with QSE will be invited to audition for the Core Ensemble. 

The ideal Core Ensemble member will have the following qualities:

  • a passion for performing Shakespeare
  • respect and commitment to QSE’s work and training
  • skilled and energetic in their work on-stage and off
  • able to receive and incorporate feedback into their practice
  • a mix of artistic and business/administrative skills
  • able to fill a gap in QSE’s current skill profile
  • a team player, more concerned with the creation of artistic community than in furthering their own commercial career
  • long-term commitment to the advancement of QSE and theatre in Queensland

Core Ensemble members have priority for involvement in artistic roles and where possible and appropriate, for any paid work within the company. In return, Core Ensemble members are expected to make QSE their first artistic priority, and not allow other artistic activities to preclude them from QSE activities. In addition to artistic commitments, Core Ensemble members are expected to commit an average of 6-8 hrs per week to their management portfolio across the year.


Applications will be accepted by e-mail only to (if electronic submission is not possible, please contact QSE at the same e-mail address well in advance of the deadline to request an alternative).

Make sure that your application includes ALL required documentation, or it cannot be accepted. Each of the following should be a separate document, ideally JPEG for the headshot and PDF for other documents. Applications should include:

  • your headshot (ideally A4 size / high resolution)
  • your acting CV
  • a one-page cover letter, as a separate attachment (ie not in the body of the e-mail) that:
    • clearly states whether you are auditioning for the Core Ensemble, Apprentice Program, or both
    • includes contact details; specifically mobile phone number and an e-mail address
    • indicates if you have a preference for a particular audition time. If you have specific time restrictions for your initial audition on December 3rd or 4th, please make these explicit in the cover-letter, otherwise we cannot guarantee you a specific time.
    • details why you would like to work specifically with QSE
    • assesses your strengths and challenges as an actor
  • a non-acting CV or a short description of your non-acting experience that outlines your administrative, managerial, marketing and/or computer skills


Please ensure you have read the ‘Crucial Dates’ section prior to applying.

Once we have received your application we will send you an e-mail acknowledging receipt, along with information about QSE and our 2022 activities. Your audition time will be e-mailed to you on or by November 29th.

Please note that not all applicants will necessarily be offered auditions. The offer of an audition is dependent on the quality and fit of the application materials.


Initial auditions will take place at the University of Queensland (St Lucia) and will consist of 15-minute slots in the following sessions, by appointment only: 
2-6pm Saturday December 3rd and 2-6pm Sunday December 4th.

Prepare two pieces from any of Shakespeare’s plays, one comic piece and one dramatic piece (not necessarily from a comedy and a tragedy/history, just one piece with a comic tone and one with a dramatic tone). Each piece should be no more than two minutes long, and speeches do not need to be age/gender appropriate. Choose something with which you feel a personal connection.

Callbacks will take place at the University of Queensland (St Lucia) and will consist of a group session 6-11pm on Monday December 5th that will include voice, Shakespeare, group work and improvisation. You MUST be available for the entirety of this callback to be considered for the Core Ensemble or either Apprentice program.


In order to be accepted into the Core Ensemble, you must be available for the following dates in 2023:

  • Initial Company Meeting: evening of Jan 22nd
  • Company Meeting: evening of Feb 19th
  • Residential Training Intensive at Stradbroke Island: Feb 27 – March 5 (Mon-Sun, inc travel)
  • Regular Advanced Training: 6-10pm Wednesday nights from March 8th to April 26th, with a public sharing the week after Easter (must be available evenings April 19th–23rd) + the evenings of May 2nd -6th
  • Members of the Core Ensemble must have general availability on Sunday evenings for meetings. While not held every week, many Sunday evenings are taken up with business, artistic, and production meetings (currently the first and third Sunday evenings from 6-10pm are set aside for this purpose).
  • NEW Core Ensemble members: training in voice and acting on the weekends of March 11th/12th, 18th/19th. and 25th/26th from 9am to 5pm on each day.
  • Rehearsals are generally held on Monday, Wednesday and Thursday evenings and on Saturday during the day. Rehearsal and performance periods for 2023 are likely to be May 27th – Aug 20th.
  • Core Ensemble training: June 3rd – 4th, Sept 23rd – 28th (times tbc)

More detailed information about 2023 activities and events, including a detailed calendar, will be available prior to the audition.

If you have questions, please e-mail QSE at or leave a message on 0411 172 390.

Learn more about QSE’s Apprentice Program

Learn more about our new Advanced Apprenticeship