Gene Tree:
Listen. Now. Again
by St Martins 


“Do we have to have hope to evolve?”

Leading audiences on an interactive performance adventure through Royal Botanic Gardens Melbourne, children and teenagers ask ‘impossible questions’ about evolution, adaptation and hope.

An ode to the planet, Gene Tree: Listen. Now. Again invites audiences into small moments: feet on the grass, back against a tree, face in the wind.

Music, rhythm and projections interlace with children’s stories of change and connection to nature. Part living sculpture, part call to attention, Gene Tree immerses audiences inside a chorus of children’s voices, dreaming futures together within the nooks and crannies of the Gardens.

Presented by St Martins in partnership with Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria.

Image Credit: Michael Carmody




The Gene Tree cast comprises 14 young people from Congress, St Martins’ think tank ensemble aged between 11 and 17 years old, and 15 young people from Dandenong Primary School aged between 9 – 12 years old.


Nadja Kostich

Concept, Composer, Musician

Elissa Goodrich


Lara Week

Associate Director

Katrina Cornwell

Production Design

Emily Barrie and Rachel Burke

Video Design and Dramaturg

Michael Carmody

St Martins collaborating Artists

Amelia Ducker, Nicolette Forte, Maria Theodorakis and Alice Qin


Rodrigo Salgado (double bass), Gideon Brazil (woodwinds), Leah Scholes (percussion) and Elissa Goodrich (percussion)

Production Manager

Rain Iyahen

Stage Manager

Zsuzsa Gaynor Mihaly

Technical Manager

Millie Levakis-Lucas


This project has been assisted by the Australian Government through the Australian Council for the Arts, its arts funding and advisory body. Gene Tree. Listen. Now. Again has also been made possible due to the contribution of the JumpStart! grant from VicHealth and an Annual Arts grant from the City of Melbourne. St Martins also acknowledges the support we have received from the Besen Family Foundation and the Robert Salzer Foundation in funding this project.


ACA Logo




Creative Victoria logo






City of Melbourne Logo






Besen Family Foundation




The Robert Salzer Foundation