Doug Robins

Doug Robins
Doug Robins in ‘Doug is Hamlet’

Winning the inaugural Access Arts Achievement Award allowed Far North Queensland actor, Doug Robins, to take a significant step on his artistic journey.

“It’s great to get the award, especially considering how much work people are doing with disabilities in the arts today,” Mr Robins, who has Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy, said from Brisbane at the time.

“Basically the award is a grant towards a project.”

Mr Robins’s project is in conjunction with JUTE Theatre and is the development of a contemporary Hamlet, adapted by co-founder of JUTE and playwright Kathryn Ash, in which he will star.

“We are using Hamlet as a building block because it is such a well defined story and is so well written with such depth of character,” Mr Robins said.

“There is a lot less angst for an actor because it is so well known, you can put your own spin on it.”

Shakespeare is a good fit for Mr Robins, who has performed in four Shakespeare productions with Tropical Arts; in the latest playing the villain in Much Ado about Dragons at Tanks Arts Centre.

“He also did a fantastic soliloquy from Hamlet at the 2012 Queensland Shakespeare Ensemble workshops,” Mr Robins’ long-time director from Tropical Arts Avril Duck said. “Doug brings such gravitas to his roles.”

Update: Doug is Hamlet was shown at JUTE Theatre in Cairns in March 2015 to critical acclaim.