Your story, Our story, Red Thread Stories

Who We Are

Red Thread Stories Australia Inc is a not for profit organisation.
Our objectives are to promote creative, inclusive ways for people and groups to connect and collaborate.

We valuesimon-mclean-learning

  • Active mindfulness
  • Listening deeply to each other
  • Building of relationships and inter-connectedness
  • Inclusive spaces for all
  • Improvisation and spontaneity
  • Creativity as a learning tool
  • Enjoyment and Fun

To find out more please contact us; OR


Book into a workshop


Read more about the company’s evolution here.

Amongst our members we have a number of creative and applied theatre practitioners including:


Jen Barrkman (a founder of Red Thread Stories Australia Inc) has been assisting people to connect over many years in her work as a group facilitator and psychologist, oral historian and Playback theatre practitioner. She loves to find creative ways to gently engage diverse people in groups. She believes through sharing and listening to each others stories in safe, inclusive spaces magic happens. We can connect deeply with each other even when we are very different. More recently she has been learning to be more mindful in her own life and has been providing counselling using Acceptance Commitment Therapy. Jen is a member of the Australian Psychological Society and is a nationally registered psychologist. More about Jen


Kris Plowman (a founder of Red Thread Stories Australia Inc) has worked as a scientist, ecologist and facilitator in universities, state and local government and the community sector both as an employee and a consultant. She has had a lifelong interest in walking gently on the earth and in working cooperatively with others to act hopefully for good in our world. More about Kris

Frankie Jaiyeola (Frankie) was drawn to Playback in 2012 during a clowning workshop where she met current members from Red Thread Stories. With a background in dance and physical theatre, Frankie enjoys the meaningful outlet Playback provides for creative expression.

Frankie has performed with various troupes and bands as a dancer and has held dance classes and workshops at venues and festivals around Brisbane. She has trained in contemporary and West African dance, clowning, improvisation and physical theatre in Brisbane with a variety of trainers including Ira Seidenstein, Liz Skitch and Jenny Winter.

In her other life, Frankie is passionate about education and is inspired by the way children learn naturally through play and how we are born with an innate desire and ability to learn. Frankie currently works as a primary school art teacher and Baby Play facilitator at the State Library. She loves the playful nature of working with children and being involved with bringing people and communities together through, song, stories and art.

B. Creative Industries (Drama/Dance), Grad. Dip. Education (Primary)

Frances Marrington has performed with Red Thread Stories since 2015. She has worked as a performer, artistic collaborator and teaching artist since graduating from QUT in 2002.Frances’ performing credits include: Minefields and Miniskirts (Brisbane Arts Theatre); The Odyssey (Zen Zen Zo Physical Theatre / Qld Arts Council), As You Like It and Shakespeare’s Shorts (Queensland Shakespeare Ensemble); Joey and Maria’s Italian Wedding (Gold Coast Arts Centre); Swan Lake (Qld Ballet); Zeitgeist (Zen Zen Zo Physical Theatre); The Ship That Never Was (Round Earth Theatre, Tasmania); Sad Bird Boy (theatre of decay, Melbourne); Eight Days (Adelaide Fringe); and Picasso’s Women (Chapel Off Chapel, Melbourne). Her film credits include lead roles in independently produced features Watch Me and Purge.

Frances has worked as a teaching artist with Zen Zen Zo Physical Theatre since 2008, and with Red Thread Stories since 2016. In 2016 she also facilitated the Lotus Place drama group in conjunction with FAN Theatre. In 2017 she will graduate from the Graduate Diploma of Education (Drama – Senior Years).

Deanna Borland-Sentinella is a creative facilitator who has specialised in using applied theatre techniques in communities to share stories, process difficult times, problem solve and vision for the future. Starting with Playback Theatre in 2003, she has continued to add other Applied Theatre techniques to her tool kit ever since – a journey which has taken her to work and train in Australia, the UK and South America. She believes in theatre as powerful tool in development and has used it in her community development work with young people, refugees, homeless, those who are incarcerated, culturally and linguistically diverse groups, and with people with disabilities. She has been part of a variety of projects including those in prisons, in schools and in community centres. She is currently under-taking PhD studies at QUT and has taught Applied Theatre at QUT, Griffith and UQ. More of Deanna’s work can be found at


Emma Che Raethke – bio coming soon!


Andre-WebAndrea Donaldson is a Trainee with Red Thread Stories. As a qualified Group Leader Childcare she has enjoyed running Playgroups, a Toy Library, and Chairing a Committee to set up a Limited Hours Child Care Centre.

During the late 1970’s Andrea worked at Greenslopes Repatriation Hospital assisting War Veterans to get Pensions and Medical treatment for War related injuries. She also enjoyed being part of the Rehabilitation Team. In the early 1980’s Andrea found herself as a member of S.A.N.D.S (Stillbirth and Neonatal Death Support Group). She later became a Parent Supporter and a Committee Member, her experiences lead her to other fulfilling areas of Loss and Grief.

Andrea has also had experience working in community services. As a Volunteer with the Capalaba Community Centre she assisted in a Parenting Program. At Logan Womens Health she worked on the Committee and assisted The Art Therapist with groups.

Andrea also practices Mindfulness Meditation and Non-Violent Communication which is a Worldwide Peace Movement.

Associate artists – past troupe members who continue to join us as guest performers – include:


Olga Rubio Garcia is a Spanish multidisciplinary arts practitioner based in Australia. She specialises in Improvisation and Playback Theatre and has worked internationally, performing and teaching theatre processes for self discovery, growth and empowerment for individuals and communities in Sri Lanka, Spain and Australia.

Of an adventurous nature and motivated by a strong inter-cultural curiosity, Olga continues travelling the world, learning, sharing and creating connections.


Daniel Sala is an multi-faceted performance artist and creator, with a formation in Fine Art and Cinema Realisation. He is a professional exhibition designer, installer and builder for institutions such as The State Library of Queensland, Museum of Brisbane, and QAGOMA.

Daniel is a Playback Theatre actor, musician and facilitator with Red Thread Stories. He has worked locally and internationally making and directing theatre for empowerment, empathy, community and group development, team building and of course… story telling.

In the world of puppets… he has directed Memetica giant puppets at Woodford Folk Festival since 2015. He recently co-directed “Love Stinks!” giant puppet theatre for Snuff Puppets at the Georgetown Festival in Penang, Malaysia in 2016. In his spare time, Daniel plays percussion for HannaKisst (tropical punk band) and dabbles with post-apocalyptic pedal-powered music making machines for Spoked (mobile musical performance), and other creative projects. Daniel loves to experience this wonderful world around us… by air, land, and water.

Willow Pryor is a professionally trained futurist with a focus on supporting individuals and organisations to challenge the assumptions they may hold about the future and identify, where needed, alternative futures pathways that create positive, equitable and sustainable impacts for all. 

As a foresight specialist/speaker/coach Willow has been involved in a wide range of projects, specifically in health, disability, community, water and engineering. Her experience has covered work with government, not-for-profit’s and social enterprise. Examples of projects include work with: Multicultural Development Australia (MDA Ltd); Queensland Urban Utilities (QUU); Multicultural Affairs Queensland (MAQ, Department of Communities); National Disabilities Services Queensland; Vic Health; and Rural Northwest Health (Vic). Willow is an Associate with the Executive Challenge Academy (Archersfield Consulting and Management), Metafuture, Futures Platform, FutureWe and Executive Brand. Willow is also a board member for BridgIT Water Foundation, an international humanitarian NFP focussed on working with remote communities globally to ensure safe, sustainable and accessible water solutions are available to those that most need it. 

In a previous life, for over a decade, Willow guided individuals and groups into greater communication between mind and body through mindfulness, bodywork and other embodiment practices. Her practice led her to deeply explore the voice and improvised theatre as forms that encourage embodiment and self expression. She now enjoys weaving these modalities together with Futures Thinking (aka foresight) to support individuals and groups to playfully explore the embodiment of desired future states. 

In her varied roles Willow enjoys igniting a sense of agency within people and organisations so that they can work together in collaboration towards their desired future in the context of a rapidly changing, complex world. She is passionate about taking people from confusion through to clarity, and that often involves some hard conversations that, when directed in the right way with the right tools, can lead to greater clarity and confidence.


“Tell me the facts and I’ll learn. Tell me the truth and I’ll believe. But tell me a story and it will live in my heart forever.”
An old Native American proverb