In 1789, a year after the arrival of the First Fleet, a play was performed on Gadigal Country, Sydney - George Farquhar's The Recruiting Officer (1706). A purpose-built theatre opened in Sydney in January 1796. Convicts organised and performed varied programs for several years. From the 1830s new theatres opened in Sydney and Hobart, and from the 1840s in Melbourne.
This following image is of a simple flyer advertising a long evening’s entertainment at Sydney’s theatre: a play (Nicholas Rowe’s Tragedy of Jane Shore), a farce and a dance. The earliest known document printed in Australia, it was discovered in Canada in 2007. The performers, all convicts, organised everything themselves.