Iconic amateur theatre company Brisbane Arts Theatre will transition into a semi-professional outfit in 2017.

Established in 1936, the 80-year-old theatre company has been based at its current Petrie Terrace location for the last 50 years.

The list of stage and screen actors and creators who got their start on the Arts Theatre stage includes Shane Porteous, Russell Dykstra, Kate Foy, Jennifer Flowers, Anna McGahan, Lucas Stibbard and the late Carol Burns, as well as a number of technicians who have gone onto professional careers in lighting, sound and set design.

Even Kate Jones, Queensland’s Minister for Education, and the late Wayne Goss, the 34th Premier of Queensland, trod the boards of the Arts Theatre in their early years.

Artistic Director John Boyce says the move to become semi-professional will create new opportunities for Brisbane Arts Theatre.

“While Brisbane Arts Theatre will leave behind its amateur status in 2017, we’ll be expanding and refining our opportunities for future performing arts professionals to train and develop.

“We are re-establishing the Arts Theatre’s place as one of Australia’s most prolific and iconic theatre companies.”

Brisbane Arts Theatre is now calling for applications for their inaugural stock company of performers and technical personnel for 2017. Open auditions will continue for ensemble roles, and for performers on the children’s theatre stage. For more information, visit artstheatre.com.au/auditions.

Brisbane Arts Theatre’s 2017 season will be announced in September.