Malthouse Theatre, home of Melbourne’s most provocative theatre, will debut Because The Night from 23 March, a new landmark immersive theatre show, which takes place across more than 30 custom-built fantasy rooms in the historic Malthouse building in Southbank.

Because The Night draws inspiration from the explosive story of Hamlet. The threads of corruption, love, and revenge are reimagined in a new play, set in a fictional 1980s wood logging town called Elsinore, where the sudden death of the king and an uprising workers’ rights movement threatens the stability of the crown. Inside the palace are whispers and eruptions, and the ancient forest is holding a secret that will topple everyone as the town prepares for their annual winter solstice carnival.

Devised by Malthouse Theatre’s artistic team, including Artistic Director and Co-CEO Matthew Lutton, and Resident Artists Ra Chapman and Kamarra Bell-Wykes, Because The Night was created as a direct response to COVID-19 in order to perform to reduced audience numbers and promote a safe theatre experience for actors and audiences. The show will be performed by six actors to just 60 audience members in two sessions per night, where the theatre is thoroughly cleaned between performances and actors and audiences can maintain social distancing during the performance.