Born in Newcastle, Australia from Macedonian parents, Stefo Nantsou has written over 50 plays and co-devised a further 65 productions worldwide. His ethnically ambiguous look has enabled him to play roles such as Lebanese, Greek, Indian, Italian, Anglo-Australian, South American, Samoan, Spanish, Russian and of course his own – Macedonian!
He co-founded the Ship-O-Fools in 1980, was an ensemble actor/writer with Freewheels Theatre (1983-84) and a full-time ensemble member of Sydney’s Sidetrack Theatre (1985-87), and founded Zeal Theatre in 1989. The latter became a touring international enterprise, which saw him act in over 45 productions alone, some of which received critical acclaim and deserving awards on his ability to deliver relevant social commentary with biting humour and empowering truthfulness in equal measure.
Under Stefo’s close and accomplished directorial attention to detail, Zeal has created over 40 original productions, notably “Joyride” (over 600 performances throughout Australia & New Zealand 92-96) and “The Stones” (performed with co-writer Tom Lycos over 1200 times worldwide, also translated in more than 20 countries). Zeal Theatre received the prestigious ASSITEJ President’s Award for ‘outstanding services to the theatre for young people industry’ in Montreal in 2005.
Stefo has also directed his plays for companies around Australia, Canada, Denmark, Germany, Holland, Hungary, New Zealand & Wales. He has also received two Australia Council Literature Fund grants for “Energy” (1993) and “The Big Tomorrow” (1994), co-founded Melbourne’s The Torch Company, writing/directing “The Essentials” (1997), “Mechtron” and “The Torch” (1999).