ABOUT US








The Red Rattler Theatre Inc is a not-for-profit (NFP) artist-run initiative (ARI) operating a community-based venue and artists’ studios.

The Red Rattler Theatre Inc is a creative playground for performers, musicians, artists, designers, multi-media makers, experimentalists, film-makers, theorists, activists, collective organisers, and local punters. It is fitted with a full PA, stage, LED lighting rig, projector and screen, licensed bar, a roof-top garden, and two non-residential artist studios currently supporting 5 practicing artists.

The Theatre was the realisation of a collective dream of five local artists, who wanted to create a legal warehouse venue to showcase alternative Sydney arts, performance and grassroots activism. The five “Rats” had been hosting events for years at many of the illegal inner-city and inner-west warehouse spaces that have been shut down over the years (Lan Franchis, Space 3, love hotel, and many temporary squatted zones), and dreamed of creating an accessible venue that held all relevant licences to stay open, and would not be at the mercy of high rents and developers.

The Red Rattler Theatre Inc is completely volunteer-run, and could not exist without the hard work and goodwill of a small army of volunteers who staff, manage and run the venue. The success and longevity of the Theatre depend on the involvement and support of volunteers.

As a not-for-profit organisation there is a tiered fee structure being charged to community users. Guests are asked to contribute a 50c donation to an eco-plan to run the space largely on renewable water and energy sources.

Located in an industrial area (originally called Tramvale Estate in the early 1900s) and in close proximity to Sydenham station, the name of the theatre is inspired by the old Red Rattler trains. Carriages were open plan with long bench seats, and the trains were noisy, clickerty clack on the tracks. The rattle refers to us trying to shake things up in terms of accessible venues and creative spaces in Sydney, and the colour red has long associations with left politics, revolution and anarchism.

Since its inception, The Red Rattler Theatre has shown the resilience, mettle and cunning of the furry creature it has been nicknamed for.

It needs your help!

Five years on, some of the founding partners have moved on to new projects and The Red Rattler Theatre Inc has a new operational model and strategic vision. It is embarking on a new journey to become a self-sustaining, community-owned space with a new team of Director's. The Red Rattler needs to raise well over $40,000 in order to purchase a 40% share of the building it resides in. A successful crowdfunding campaign "Save The Rat" through Pozible has launched this new direction, and the Theatre views this as just the start of an achieveable goal towards being self-sustaininable.

With Sydney’s live performance venues and creative spaces constantly facing the threat of survival, supporting the Red Rattler will help to ensure a viable future for the Theatre, where it can become fully self-sufficient and community owned and not under risk of suffering the fate that other iconic Sydney venues have recently been faced with. You can support us by making donations or clicking on the below link.


Click here to SAVE THE RAT

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