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Regional Arts Development Central West NSW

Touring: Highway of Lost Hearts


16 May, BMEC, then touring NSW. Lingua Franca in association with Arts on Tour HIGHWAY OF LOST HEARTS By Mary Anne Butler.

An allegory for a country that has lost its heart. A roadtrip through the centre of Australia. An award-winning Australian playwright: this stellar new regionally-made production, featuring theatrical powerhouse Kate Smith and music duo Smith & Jones, will stay with you long after the lights have gone down.

…makes one ponder matters of the heart that go beyond the world of the play… This outstanding production is not to be missed.  Suzie Gibson, Artshub

See the tour schedule



Thursday 16th May



Laycock Theatre

Saturday 18th May



Griffith Regional Theatre

Wednesday 29th May



Glen Street Theatre

Friday 31st May

Saturday 1st June – 2pm & 7:30pm shows



Capitol Theatre

Tuesday 4th June



The Q

Thursday 6th June

Friday 7th June 



Riverside Theatres

Friday 14th June – 11am & 8pm shows

Saturday15th June – 2pm & 8pm shows


Playwright Mary Anne Butler
Director Adam Deusien
Designer Annemaree Dalziel
Lighting Design & Production Manager Becky Russel
Live original music Smith & Jones


A woman. A dog. A campervan. And 4,500 kms of wide open road.

Mot wakes up one morning to find that her heart is missing from her chest. She can breathe; she has a pulse—but she feels… nothing.

So, she decides to go and look for it. With her dog enlisted as co-pilot, Mot heads down the Highway of Lost Hearts: into the deepest core of the Australian Outback—through country towns in NSW, SA and the NT—navigating red dirt landscapes, fire and flood, brittle dryness, vast salt lakes, age-old mountains and murky waters filled with lost souls.

Bathurst-based Lingua Franca present this truly regional story in a new production starring theatrical powerhouse Kate Smith, with original music composed and performed by alt-country duo and Central West icons, Smith & Jones.

More than just live musicians, Smith & Jones become ethereal companions to Mot as she drives. Their music is perfectly aligned with Mary Anne Butler’s writing, part poetry, part road trip playlist, and engages lovers of country and alt country music.

An allegory for a country that has lost its heart, Highway of Lost Hearts is half gritty road journey, half magic realism and all heart. It leaves audiences pondering the question: when your heart goes missing, what lengths will you go to, to find it again?

This play feels like a love letter to regional Australia, and when you love something, you take it for all that is. On Mot’s drive through the heart of the country, as she searches for her own, we see it all: the good, the bad, the ugly and the truly sublime. As a team of entirely regional artists, and for Lingua Franca as producers dedicated to regional arts practice, sharing Mary Anne’s words is a powerful gift.

-Kate Smith & Adam Deusien

See on the Arts on Tour website

Photo by Phil Blatch