Backstage

Artist Profile – Kate Speakman (Associate Artists)

Introduce yourself!

Hi! My name is Kate Speakman, and I’m a creative producer, dramaturg and event-manager-in-training.

Tell us about your artistic origins

When I was younger, I took acting classes in my hometown of Geelong and whilst I absolutely loved performing, my favourite part was writing my own scenes. From there, I moved onto independent theatre, working on Tom Molyneux and Platform Youth Arts’ performance “Voicebox: Lost & Found” in 2016. All the actors in Voicebox kept talking about this place called MUST, and once I got to Monash I finally understood. MUST is where I did most of my artistic and personal development, under the watchful eyes of Yvonne Virsik and Jason Lehane. Last year, I did a creative development with Platform of my new work GIRDLE, which explores the Kessler theory and the climate emergency.

Tell us about your practice

My practice mostly involved producing and facilitating other people’s work, but I have my own projects as well. I bring my love and knowledge of history and ancient cultures to everything I do. I love to work on performances that address the micro to discuss the macro – conversations between friends revealing the state of gender politics in the world for example.

What have you gained from the Associate Artists program?

The Associate Artist program has put me in touch with so many awesome artists and facilitators, who I’m enjoying getting to know. I’ve really valued having experts provide advice on marketing, budgeting and grant writing (oh my god, to have someone finally explain grant writing! What a blessing!). Being around a group of theatremakers on a regular basis also just keeps me motivated and inspired.

What are you working on right now?

I’m currently working on an anthology of stories about shame, embarrassment and awkwardness. I hope to provide a space where my audience can get some collective catharsis from the memories that are weighing them down.

What have you been up to during lockdown? 
During lockdown I’ve been working with Fleur Kilpatrick on her latest work as writing assistant, and facilitating development for young writers from MUST. When I’m not doing that, I’m selling cupcakes at my hospitality job, studying Events Management online, consuming every documentary known to man, and doing themed photo-shoots with my housemates.

What are you aspiring towards? 
I’m aspiring to find work as creative producer and event manager some time in the near future, produce my own work, have more and more interesting discussions with amazing theatre makers, and start hugging people when I greet them again (when the law allows).

Photo by Aleksandr Corke

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