Hitchhiker’s guide to reality

Devising an interdisciplinary radio play in a pandemic





theatre, music, interdisciplinary, COVID, project-based learning


In this article we explore a collaborative interdisciplinary Theatre and Music production as part of two undergraduate courses at the University of the Sunshine Coast, Australia, during COVID-19. Tertiary intuitions all over the world are currently being forced to adapt in radical response to the pandemic. The specific conditions of the authors’ experience prompted this collaboration where both teaching and learning occurred in an unstable, unpredictable and unprecedented environment. Experiences during the semester and the outcomes of the project were rich, multifaceted, and exceeded expectations. This included several weeks of intensive collaborative rehearsal and creative development, university-facing performances, and a public-facing performance at a NightQuarter event which had over 4,500 attendees. This article unpacks the ideas of Project-Based Learning (Bell 2010) and interdisciplinary collaboration, in order to understand the impact on teaching and learning and the potential of this model.

Author Biographies

Briony Luttrell, University of the Sunshine Coast

Dr Briony Luttrell is a musician, researcher, and educator whose expertise sits at an intersection of creative, technical, and theoretical approaches. Briony specializes in creative collaboration and has hundreds of creative works that encompass art music traditions, popular music, and experimental practices.

Hannah Joyce Banks, University of the Sunshine Coast

Dr Hannah Joyce Banks is a theatre practitioner and academic originally from Aotearoa New Zealand. She has been teaching in tertiary education since 2011 and has worked in the theatre industry as an actor, director, writer, producer, and production manager.

Andy Ward, University of the Sunshine Coast

Dr Andy Ward is a researcher focusing on songwriting, music theory, sustainability, and popular culture. Andy brings his years of industry practice to academia previously working as a songwriter, producer and performing artist. Today he continues to work with major record labels and music publishers on developing songs and artists from around the world.

Lachlan Goold, University of the Sunshine Coast

Dr Lachlan Goold’s research focuses on the recording studio, music production practice, and government legislation affecting the music industry. Lachlan has an extensive career as a music producer and has won two ARIA awards for his work.


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How to Cite

Luttrell, B. ., Banks, H. J. ., Ward, A., & Goold, L. (2021). Hitchhiker’s guide to reality: Devising an interdisciplinary radio play in a pandemic. Perfect Beat, 21(1), 69–75. https://doi.org/10.1558/prbt.19305