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New opportunity for theatre makers

Brooke Boland

A new program at Frankston Arts Centre will help emerging artists create and present independent theatre in the outer suburbs.
New opportunity for theatre makers

Brain Fog by RAWCollective. Image supplied.

The new HATCH accelerator program at Frankston Arts Centre (FAC) will help emerging theatre makers build the skills needed to successfully develop and present work.

The first stage of the program starts this April and will be delivered through a series of master classes in partnership with Melbourne Theatre Company’s Neon Next Program.

During the five dedicated creative workshops – Storming an Idea, Grant Writing, Directing, Producing and Writing – theatre makers will have the opportunity to work with some of Australia’s best creative practitioners.

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‘This program is to up skill artists and show them what to do to get a work from concept to performance,’ said Tammy Ryan, Coordinator Programming Arts and Culture at FAC.

‘Even when the artists do have that ability and knowledge to get a work to performance stage, they then might do one performance or go to Melbourne Fringe to do a season and the work doesn’t have a life beyond that. This is about providing artists with better knowledge of the touring model that operates in Victoria and across Australia and giving them the many different skills [they need] because often independent artists have to wear many different hats – one directing, one producing, one marketing.’

Ryan said the opportunity is not just for young graduates as the term “emerging” might imply. ‘There are many artists who might have had a hiatus and are just coming back to their practice and re-entering the field, emerging in regards to the stage of their craft rather than their age,’ she said.

The workshops are free but, as spaces are limited, participants will be selected through an expression of interest. ‘It’s a small intake, because it will be such an intensive period. We are looking for about 12 artists,’ said Ryan.

Stage Two of HATCH will see participants building networks and developing work through mentorship opportunities with established theatre companies, facilitated by FAC.

‘For example, if they find they are really well connected with Red Stitch then we will get in touch with Red Stitch and say, “Hey, are you willing to take on this artist for a couple of weeks and show them how you work?” It is about finding the creative goal of the artist who is participating and then linking them in with established companies to create new and hopefully ongoing networks,’ explained Ryan.

How to participate

To apply, applicants need to get in touch with FAC and include a statement on why they want to participate and what they hope to gain from HATCH.

‘It is about having a strong concept and understanding of where you want to go. What we’re going to provide you with is some guidance with how to get there. We want artists to apply who have some understanding of how to put on a performance and how to go about it but just don’t have all the steps in place,’ said Ryan.

‘Being able to demonstrate their commitment to going on this journey is key. We want artists with strong concepts and the motivation for their ideas to lead into performance outcomes.’

To be considered, email cube37@frankston.vic.gov.au by 5pm Wednesday 12 April with the following details:

-              Name

-              Contact details

-              A short bio about yourself

-              Why you would like to participate and what you hope to gain from the workshop series

Selected participants will be notified by Wednesday 19 April.

Further enquiries contact Tammy Ryan Coordinator Programming, Arts and Culture on 03 9784 1705.

About the author

Brooke Boland is a Melbourne-based freelance writer. She recently completed her PhD on gender, translation and women's writing and has tutored undergraduates at Victoria University and the University of NSW.

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