Craig Lindeman has covered a lot of ground in the name of community theatre.
But when he treads the boards as a rapist and murderer, he'll be approaching uncharted waters.
"I've never done anything like this before. It is so controversial, but I wanted to challenge myself," he said.
Lindeman will next month take centre stage in a Hunter production of The Boys, the profoundly disturbing play inspired by the brutal rape and murder of Sydney nurse Anita Cobby on February 2, 1986.
For this version of the Gordon Graham play, Lindeman, of Thornton, will play Glenn Sprague - the middle of three brothers guilty of killing a young woman.
"Glenn really is the best of a bad bunch," said Lindeman who, at 28, was born the same year of Ms Cobby's death.
"But taking on this role has made me realise just how bad these people are and what they did was just a monstrous and horrible thing to do."
Ms Cobby, 26, was returning home from a night out with friends when she was abducted from Blacktown and raped and murdered at nearby Prospect.
Five men - including three brothers - were found guilty of the crime in what the judge called "one of the most horrifying physical and sexual assaults . . . a calculated killing done in cold blood."
"To be honest, I found it a struggle saying some of the lines," Lindeman said.
"But hopefully I'll become a little bit desensitised as we go along but I can't understand how someone could do something like this and I never will."
- The Boys opens at the Newcastle Theatre Company, Lambton, on October 4 and runs until October 18. For more information phone 49524958.