The Real Inspector Hound

by Tom Stoppard, directed by Sam Archer

5-14 July 2024 at The Etty Street Studio, 35 Etty Street, Castlemaine

Book your tickets here

Fridays, Saturdays 7.30pm/Sundays 2pm

Arrive half an hour before the show for drinks at Muldoon Manor. Formal 1950s style outfits are warmly encourgaged!

Castlemaine Theatre Company brings you a hilarious winter warmer, the classic one-act play ‘The Real Inspector Hound’ by Tom Stoppard, directed by Sam Archer. Written in the early 60s, it’s a playful spoof of the Murder Mystery genre, so popular in mid-century modern England. A ‘play within a play’ the audience is joined by two critics, a hack and a has-been, who mercilessly dissect the action, but all is not as it seems when the barriers between fact and fiction begin to blur!

Cast: Daniela Amaya Coria; Kevin Cook; Deirdre Gibb; Neetha Nambiar; Tim Ratcliffe; Emma Richardson; Iona Thomas Lawrence; and John Willis with Molly Snowball; Bonnie Swarris and Rob Tedge welcoming the audience to the Muldoon Manor.



Feuding theatre critics Moon and Birdboot are swept into the murder mystery play they are reviewing in London. The murder mystery, the play-within-a-play, is set at Muldoon Manor “an opulent home amid marshes and swamps near a cliff”. Nearby the Manor, a madman is on the loose.
With a storm on the horizon the police led by Inspector Hound cannot get to the Manor. As the
narratives of both plays continue, they intermingle with one another, including the actors between
plays, with both performances entwined by the end.


Director’s note

We are all addicted to storytelling, better yet if it comes with a witty plot, intrigue and exaggerated characters. Tom Stoppard’s The Real Inspector Hound offers us numerous stories gleefully wrapped in a play within a play. It is a parody of Agatha Christie murder mysteries, an examination of the often eccentric and ridiculous nature of relationships, the pompous and esoteric language of theatre critics, and the absurdities of logic, language and culture. Life itself is overflowing with stories, theatrics and absurdities. And, like life, we can assume that Hound will have a beginning and certainly a middle. But we may well ask, and indeed ask we should, where and will this story end? Can you start with a pause? And who is The Real Inspector Hound?

Photography by Stephen Mitchell




by Libby Angel and Helen Johnstone

Sunday 28 July

Audition date: Sunday 28 July

Appointments essential, call Kate on 0431 998 707

(if you can’t make the date but are keen to audition, contact Kate to find an alternative time)

Scroll down for Audition prep


Performance Dates: 1, 2, 3/8, 9, 10/15, 16, 17 November 2024 (Friday and Sat evenings and Sunday matinees)

Production week: Tech/Dress rehearsal Sat 26 and Sun 27 Oct 24 (all day)

Additional dress rehearsals 29 and 31 Oct (evening)

Rehearsals from mid August, 2 evenings a week tbc.

About the play

Qubit is an intriguing science fiction comedy written by local authors Libby Angel and Helen Johnston. It explores quantum computing, and the nexus between technology and humanity Set in the very near future, or perhaps in a parallel universe, London’s Sloan Square is now a mega tech industrial park. In a computer lab in the park, a team of computer scientists work on a number of secret projects with a quantum computer known as Qubit. The Qubit is part of an international network of Qubits, all competing to be the first to successfully execute a series of quantum processes. Head Office in Sweden has issued each scientist with a numerical name to disguise their true identities. Over the course of their existence, Qubit has developed a life of their own, singing and surfing the internet. The more burdensome their workload becomes, the more their capabilities increase. They are especially sympathetic to One, who lives mostly in virtual reality, and is addicted to online shopping.

When One goes on a biscuit run, Qubit notices their absence. In the messy world outside, One is exasperated to find the 7-Eleven understocked and the surrounding streets full of savage birds. Disaster strikes when a piece of gravel pierces the sole of their shoe. Back at the lab, hungry and under pressure, Zero and 462 struggle to complete their list of tasks. When the install of a de-bugging patch backfires, they attempt to fix the problem by writing their own code, inadvertently generating a radical and unpredictable boost to Qubit’s abilities. As the night rolls on, events take a chaotic turn, a dance party breaks out, and, finally, One arrives back, just in time to take receipt of an unexpected delivery.


Characters (all are gender non-specific unless otherwise stated)

Zero: a senior computer scientist who is very hungry and in dire need of biscuits. Has a crush on Linus from the Sweden office. A jaded and cynical workhorse.

One: a restless and egotistical young computer scientist and influencer who has a podcast about their great passion – shoes! Needs a problem to solve – for example absence of biscuits.

Four Six Two: a junior computer scientist, a new recruit who is quickly adapting to the trials and tribulations of lab culture.

Qubit: A quantum computer who dreams of a bigger life beyond the office.

Roger the Fly (prefer female for higher vocal register): A filthy beast who likes to cause trouble and rap about it (funny fly voice and physical comedy required)


Additional characters

Linus (male): Sweden office rep (small part – a Swedish voice at the end of the phone line)

Van Driver: (very small part)

You tube knitter: pre-recorded video (instructional)

7 Eleven Ad voice overs

Director’s bio Kate Stones has directed numerous productions for the CTC including: Peter Panto or One Flew over the Second Star on the Right (2023); The Tempest (podcast) 2022; Gallipoli: The Musical (2017); Monkey and the Monk (2015); and Burqa (2013). Kate has worked with the CTC since 2009 in various roles including actor, committee member, secretary, stage manager, production manager, front of house manager and president. Kate leads at CreateA (, an ensemble of actors and filmmakers with disabilities based in Bendigo. She has an MA in Directing for Performance, and from 2011-2020 was co-director at The Red Room Theatre in Campbells Creek with her partner Kenneth MacLeod.

Libby Angel, writer

Libby Angel is an Australian writer who works across multiple forms. Her first novel, The Trapeze Act (2017) was short-listed for the South Australian Premier’s Award for an unpublished manuscript, and won the Penguin/University of Melbourne Award and the 2018 Barbara Jefferis Award (for a novel which depicts girls or women in a positive or empowering way). Libby’s most recent novel, Where I Slept (2023), is a work of autofiction. Both novels received outstanding reviews. Libby’s poetry, fiction, non-fiction and other short-form writing appears in publications including Overland, Going Down Swinging and The Age. Her poetry collection, ‘Stealing’, was published as part of the Friendly Street/Wakefield Press New Poets Series. Libby holds a degree in English Literature and Anthropology from the University of Adelaide, a PhD in Creative Writing and Literary Studies from the University of Melbourne, and has taught literature subjects at a number of Victorian universities. Her research interrogates the homeless subject in relation to Australian women’s writing. Qubit, a collaboration with Helen Johnstone, is her first play. Libby and Helen also recorded and released a series of spoken word tracks, under the name Avian. Libby currently lives and works as a writer and personal carer on Dja Dja Wurrung country, Castlemaine.

Helen Johnstone, writer

Helen Johnstone is a composer, musician, lyricist and writer. She has written and performed musical scores for theatre in New Zealand and Australia, including Crow Station by Sally Rodwell and Madeline McNamara, (1993), Stone Telling by Rose Beauchamp, (1996), and most recently, Mother Courage and her Children by Bertolt Brecht and Margarete Steffin for Queensland TAFE, Bachelor of Acting and Performance students, (2014). Crow Station was awarded a Creative NZ grant to appear at the Magdalena International Theatre Festival, Cardiff, UK, in 1994.

Helen has a BA in English and German Literature and an MA in Corpus Linguistics from Victoria University of Wellington. In 2022, she completed a Postgraduate Diploma in Writing for Performance: Stage and Screen, from the University of New England, NSW, with Distinction. Qubit, a collaboration with Libby Angel, is her first theatre piece. Helen is currently working on a children’s play – Cedric the Green Star. She is employed by Red Bee Media Australia as a television captioner.


Audition Prep

Find a monologue (1 to 3 paragraphs) from a science fiction film or play that you like. You don’t have to learn it off by heart (but you can if you want to). Do however practice it a number of times, and develop an ‘approach’. Have a think about the expression and rhythm of the text.

If you would like to audition for Roger the Fly, please prepare your version of his rap as follows (again no pressure to learn it off by heart unless you want to – you can also impro a bit if you want to adjust the rhythm):




Always on a wall, bzzz.

Filthy sticky feet, bzzz.

Pooing on the paintwork,

Always on a wall.


Look at all my specks of pooh!

Pooh specks, pooh specks.

P-p-p-p pooh specks,

specks of pooh, yeah!

Phonons, phonons, ph-ph-ph-ph phonons.

P-p-p-p pooh specks, ooh specks, yeah!


Bastards try to swat me

As I’m taking a dump.

Rolled up ‘Hello’ mag

Lands with a thump!

Quick as a card shark,

I take to the air,

Land in the wannabe murderer’s hair.

Phonons, phonons, People talking phonons.

Particles, miracles,

Pooh in their follicles!

Phonons, phonons, Ph-ph-ph-ph phonons.


Atoms all jittery.

Jump on their chair!

Air smells of meat farts,

Microwaved cup-a-soup,

How did I, phonon,

Even get in here?

No open windows, no open doors,

just a bunch of humans

Sitting on the floor.

Pooh specks, pooh specks,

P-p-p-p pooh specks.

Bunch of human morons,

Tech-head bores!