Rachael Coopes

Rachael is a storyteller in many forms, and her career in theatre, film and television spans over 20 years.

She started writing sketches for SBS’s Life Support in 2001 and devised The Decameron at the Old Fitzroy. On winning the Ian Potter Cultural Trust and Marten Bequest Scholarship, Rachael studied in Paris 2004-2005, with Philippe Gaulier, devising new work and writing her first play Art House. It was subsequently staged at The Old Red Lion in London and the Edinburgh Fringe Festival in 2009, The University of Washington, USA in 2010 and The Idly Bent Theatre Company in 2013. Her short play Save Draft was staged at Short and Sweet Festival 2011.

Devised work includes Two Women (Griff Fringe at Griffin Theatre 2010), I’m Not Sure I’m an Adult Yet (November ISM Festival 2011) and various corporate projects, including ten-minute silent piece A Moment in Time in 2013 for Cerrone Jewellery’s anniversary event.

She has worked as a drama coach on The Sapphires, commercials directed by Ray Lawrence, ABC’s Cleverman and Fighting Season, Kate Woods.

Her play Sugarland, co-created with Wayne Blair, was produced at ATYP and the Darwin Festival in 2014. It was ATYP’s first professional production in 30 years, broke all ATYP box office records, won the Sydney Theatre Award for Best Production for Young People. It was published in 2015, was nominated for an AWGIE Award for Theatre for Young Audience 2015, did a national tour 2016, won the Helpmann Award for Best Regional Touring Production 2016, was nominated for a Green Room Award for Best New Work 2017 and a Drover’s Award 2017.

She regularly writes for ABC’s Play School and is part of the writing team for Australian/Irish co-pro Ambience/ AirPig Productions/ Telegael new children’s television series Drop Dead Weird (about to air on Seven Network). In 2017 she was awarded an honorary fellowship at The State Library of NSW, as their first-ever Creative Fellow. This will provide research support for her new work in development- Les Darcy (working title) a play based on infamous Australian boxer Les Darcy, who is also her great-grandfather’s cousin. She is currently doing a residency with ATYP and Bathurst Memorial Entertainment Centre, working with local young people and artists, commissioned to write new play The Climbing Tree, with production slated for 2018.

A new project sees Rachael in the development stages of writing and producing a new play for the Royal Australian Air Forces Centenary celebrations in 2021. Alongside Danielle O’Keefe (The House That Dan Built), Rachael is involved in The Long Table project, exploring the stories of women on the land in Australia across generations. Funded by the Australia Council, Rachael has been commissioned to write a play, Paper Birds (working title) about the lives of these women.

Also in development- new kids tv show introducing kids to the sounds of the orchestra with renowned composer George Ellis and Rizer Productions and Yoga with Rachel (working title) kids tv show, with the pilot due early 2018. Following on from the success of the production Sugarland (AYTP) Rachael is developing a tv series for teenage audiences based on the play. 2018 will also see the publication of Rachael’s book focusing on Yoga in the Modern World, and The Yoga of Motherhood.

Rachael Coopes

Rachael Coopes Credits

— Sugarland

— Art House