The Rise and Fall of Saint George

Paul Mac & Lachlan Philpott

You gotta have faith…

Following the death of queer icon George Michael, Paul Mac and Jonny Seymour commissioned a mural by artist Scott Marsh on the exterior of their home. Draped in a rainbow stole with a spliff in hand and a sacrosanct bottle of poppers in the other, Saint George’s eyes watched over the suburb and he winked at commuters through the windows of passing trains. He became a landmark, a local shrine, and was adored by all.

But the vivid life of Newtown’s patron saint of queer communion was cut short. Hours after the nation said ‘YES’ to the postal plebiscite on Marriage Equality, the mural was destroyed by a group of young men who claimed it violated their Christian faith.

Leading queer artists, pop icon Paul Mac and playwright Lachlan Philpott, have collaborated to create an immersive and highly personal music experience that is a unique reminder of a tough chapter of our history that shouldn’t be forgotten. Directed by Kate Champion, mac communes on stage with this city’s finest singers. With the backing of a giant choir, this is a work of resilience and hope.

A love letter to Sydney’s fluid queer audacity, The Rise and Fall of Saint George connects us to a shared need to be a part of a community, explores finding solidarity in bleak times. It is an urgent call to arms to not let hard-won rights and freedoms be taken for granted.


Paul Mac & Lachlan Philpott

Kate Champion

Paul Mac

Lachlan Philpott

Lighting Design
Verity Hampson

Sound Engineer
Zac Ruokari

AV Designer
Tony Melov

Choir Conductor
Emily Irvine (Inner West Voices)

Choir Preparation
Alex Morris

Performed by
Andrew Bukenya
Jacqui Dark
Brendan Maclean
Marcus Whale

Performed in Melbourne by
shOUT Youth Chorus with members of Melbourne Gay & Lesbian Chorus, Just Holler and Newlands Choir

Produced by Performing Lines

A very big thanks to Andy Lysle (Technical Event Services) and Peter Rubie for their contribution to the development of this work.

Information for Presenters

This work is ready for presentation in 2021 and beyond.

Vanessa Wright Senior Producer
Thom Smyth Producer

Presentation History

Everest Theatre, Seymour Centre
Chippendale, NSW
View full Presentation History

Full Presentation History for The Rise and Fall of Saint George

Everest Theatre, Seymour Centre
Chippendale, NSW
Hamer Hall for Midsumma Festival 2020
Melbourne, VIC
Sydney Festival - Barangaroo Headland
Sydney, NSW

Project Partners & Acknowledgements

The Rise and Fall of Saint George is produced by Performing Lines and supported by the Australian Government through the Australia Council for the Arts, the New South Wales Government through Create NSW and was originally supported by Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras and the Seaborn, Broughton and Walford Foundation.

In everything we do, we acknowledge that we live on Aboriginal land and constantly learn from the wisdom of First Peoples.

Where we are and the history that precedes us informs how we work and how we move forward.