top of page

In Development

It's a Secret!

Based on the book by John Burningham

'Towards simplicity but away from childish things.'

– John Burningham

A large-scale theatrical adventure for all ages. Three ushers come to the rescue when a famous international children’s theatre company fail to turn up for a performance of It’s a Secret!

It’s a Secret! is a rough-cast adaptation by senior Australian artists of excellence, of John Burningham’s award winning-book of the same name, directed by Henrick Ibsen Award winner 2022, Bruce Gladwin, choreographed by Lucy Guerin( AO) and edited by Melissa Reeves.


The double story line of the dreamy Burningham picture book, woven together with the dusty ushers offers Gladwin fertile theatrical ground to make a meaningful work weaving the personal, political and the cosmic. It’s a Secret! asks at its heart, how are we set free? As artists and as humans.


Combining projection, animation, aerial work, a Russian criminal band: the intention is to create a highly experiential work for all that defies definition as a 'children’s show'. The premise is an intriguing leaping off point for some of Australia’s most beloved clowns: Julie Forsyth, Jacek Koman, Rebecca Massey and Catherine McClements. The collaboration of Melbourne-based cult band Vulgargrad, with its compulsive gypsy music and unruly repertoire, with these theatrical minds make It’s a Secret! an event rich with possibility.

Recommended for ages 6+

Keep an eye on this page or subscribe to our newsletter and be the first to know about ticket releases, exclusive events, and all the juicy happenings at Club House.

    • Bec is an award-winning actress across film and television, and one of Australia’s beloved theatre clowns. She founded Club House Productions as a naughty play space for skilled artists to colour outside the lines.


      Currently, she is preparing to tour 44 Sex Acts in One Week to festivals both here and abroad, as well as developing Dance Dance Insurrection, the next instalment in David Finnigan's apocalyptic trilogy.

    • The late John Burningham is regarded as one of the greatest picture book innovators of his generation, consistently pushing at the boundaries of the medium. His critically acclaimed picture books are loved all over the world and he is known especially for the wit and humour in his storytelling and artwork. During his career he won numerous awards, including the Kate Greenaway Award.

    • Bruce is the Artistic Director of Back to Back Theatre and one of Australia’s most daring directors and performancemakers.


      He has won numerous accolades for his work, including the prestigious International Ibsen Award, the Edinburgh Festival Herald Angel Critics’ Award, and several Helpmann and Green Room Awards.

    • Lucy is the Artistic Director of the eponymous Lucy Guerin Inc., a contemporary dance company dedicated to ground-breaking work of vision and scale. Her performances include the ambitious NEWRETRO and the experimental PENDULUM, which premiered internationally at the 2021 Venice Biennale.


      Lucy has received innumerable accolades throughout her career, including a New York Dance and Performance Award, the Sidney Myer Performing Arts Award, and multiple Green Room, Helpmann, and Australian Dance Awards. In 2016, she was awarded the Australia Council Award and, in 2020, the Order of Australia (OA).

    • Melissa is an acclaimed playwright whose work focuses on collaboration and social equity. Based on Melbourne, her plays include In Cahoots, Who’s Afraid of the Working Class (co-written with Andrew Bovell, Patricia Cornelius and Christos Tsiolkas), and Sweettown, the latter of which received the 1993 Jill Blewitt Playwrights Award.

    • Rhian is an artist and filmmaker whose career spans theatre, film and dance. A recipient of awards at both SXSW and the Edinburgh Film Festival, Rhian’s work includes the films Better Man Than Me and Shadow, as well as the animated TV series First Responders. 

    • Paul  ADPG is a multi-award-winning lighting designer who brings his innovative style and a passion for new works to stages across the country. He has worked extensively in theatre, opera, dance, and musical theatre, as well as on concerts and live events.

    • Harry is a highly-skilled composer and sound designer whose work includes the films Girl Asleep and A Field Guide to Being a 12-Year-Old Girl, as well as the TV series Beep and Mort. 

    • Harriet Oxley is a costume designer whose inspired works have outfitted numerous dance, theatre, opera and circus productions. Among her most recent works are Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf (Red Stitch Theatre), The Ring Cycle (Melbourne Opera), and PENDULUM (Lucy Guerin Inc.).

    • Iain is a highly-acclaimed composer, conductor, and director of the Port Fairy Spring Music Festival. He has won numerous awards for his compositions, including the Sidney Myer Performing Arts Award, APRA/AMC’s Vocal Work of the Year Award (for his opera based on Tim Winton’s The Riders), as well as multiple Helpmann Awards (Cloud Street; Secret River; The Rabbits).


      Most recently, Iain wrapped up his 2020–24 tenure as the Artistic Director of the Perth Festival, where his programming highlighted the local Noongar culture and focused on themes of inclusion and belonging. 

    • Dans is a celebrated producer who has worked on a diverse array of productions for companies like Back to Back Theatre and Circus Oz, as well as touring with the world-famous Alvin Ailey American Dance Theatre.

      Throughout her career, Dans has contributed to the success of countless projects, including New York’s multi-venue dance festival, LaMama Moves

    • Julie is a celebrated theatre artist and a queen of the Australian stage. For decades, she has toured festivals across the globe: from her solo schoolboy performance in Anthill’s Kids’ Stuff to her ensemble work in Belvoir Theatre’s Cloudstreet. Most recently, she shone alongside Hugo Weaving in The President at the Gate Theatre, Dublin.

    • Jacek is an internationally-acclaimed musical theatre actor known for his thrilling live performances and unforgettable take on the iconic Roxanne in Baz Luhrmann’s hit movie Moulin Rouge. A skilled vocalist in both English and Polish, Jacek is also the leader of Vulgargrad, the multi-lingual band that melds traditional Russian folk, thieves’ songs, polka, and punk. Outside of music, Jacek has worked across film, television, and theatre, starring in shows like Tidelands and Mustangs FC.

    • Catherine is one of Australia’s most recognisable screen actors, having worked on everything from Strictly Ballroom to Rush, Wentworth, Secret Life of Us and the police drama Water Rats. She has amassed many accolades across her decades-long career, including AFI, ASTRA and Green Room awards.

    • Vulgargrad’s blend of traditional Russian folk and Perestroika era punk has earned them a cult following in Australia and around the world. The band’s six members sing in Russian, Polish, Yiddish and English, accompanying their diverse lyrics with the contrabass, piano accordion and other eclectic instruments. 

  • We acknowledge the following organisations for their generous, ongoing support. With their help, Club House is able to achieve our creative and organisational goals.

bottom of page