In 2019, we are setting out to embody our values and create a space for conversations that matter.
This means presenting more work for children, young people and families. In Chapter 1 we are so excited to present Arena Theatre’s vital production of ROBOT SONG and Holly Austin’s ALPHABET SOUP. In Chapter 2 we host JUNGLE BUNGLE in a tent during school holidays, present the riotous MAD AS A CUTE SNAKE during Fringe Festival and host a new hip-hop initiative for young people with the PLAY IT FORWARD HIP-HOP FESTIVAL. All these works are central to ensuring new people, young people, get to the theatre and become engaged with stories that matter.
This year, we are also making a concerted effort to change the very face of Australian theatre, by putting teams led by female-identifying artists front and centre. Fleur Kilpatrick’s stunning adaptation of SLAUGHTERHOUSE FIVE leads the charge in Chapter 1, with Leah Shelton’s staggering BITCH ON HEAT, The Anchor’s thought-provoking THE THREE GRACES and Rebecca Meston’s riveting DRIVE filling out Chapter 2. On top of this, Bridget Balodis and Krystalla Pearce’s SHE IS VIGILANTE program will see six women writers develop new works throughout the year, creating new narratives and new voices for female-identifying people.
Continuing our tradition of presenting tenacious, dangerous and boundary-shattering works, we are proud to present productions such as AUTOCANNIBAL by Mitch Jones and LET MEN TREMBLE by the Danger Ensemble. One a jaw-dropping solo piece, the other a rigorous ensemble show. Through new works by The Danger Ensemble, The Very Good Looking Initiative and The Anchor, we are supporting uncompromising ensemble practice; encouraging and promoting tight knit theatre communities and networks.
But where the focus of 2019’s programming truly lies is in our commitment to new writing and new scripts, proudly providing a platform for the storytellers of tomorrow. From ROBOT SONG to DRIVE to THE OTHER PLACE, THE THREE GRACES, MAD AS A CUTE SNAKE and SHE IS VIGILANTE, Chapter 1 and Chapter 2 are full of exciting new stories that need to be brought to life.
This year we will support 13 of these productions through the funding we received from the Australian Government’s Catalyst fund – putting every last cent of it towards funding the artists that will ignite the imaginations of audiences throughout 2019. As an organisation, we don’t hold on to any of this money.
We do this because the artists we want to work with need and deserve the support. There isn’t enough arts funding (full stop) to support independent artists and the visionary productions that we believe in.
We believe in exploring and celebrating hidden and unheard voices. We believe in courage and curiosity and stories of joy, discovery and searing insight. We believe that the artists we have programmed across 2019 have the power to shape the future with their vision.