The Ninth Wave by The Farm and Co3 Contemporary Dance. Photo by Jess Wyld.
Festival of Outback Opera by Opera Queensland. Photo by Glenn Hunt.
Auto Cannibal by Australasian Dance Collective and Beijing Dance LDTX,
Choreographed by Stephanie Lake. Photo by Jade Ellis.
Zoom by Patch Theatre. Photo by Matt Byrne.
Trash Talk by The Strangeways Ensemble. Courtesy of Merrigong Theatre Company.
So Long Suckers by Yirra Yaakin Theatre Company. Photo by Simon Pynt.
Black Cockatoo by Ensemble Theatre. Photo by Prudence Upton.
Whoosh by Sensorium Theatre. Photo by Peter Foster.
River Linked Live Virtual Concert. Photo by Abram Rasmussen Photography.
HOTA Home of the Arts. Courtesy of venue.
The Butch is Back by Reuben Kaye. Photo by Rebekah Ryan.
Katherine Connor has worked as a performing arts presenter, a producer and an arts planning consultant in Australia for over 20 years.
Katherine was previously a director at a venue management and consulting firm where she was also the venue manager at The Hills Centre for the Performing Arts (2002-2005) and a Project Director, delivering business plans, feasibility studies and project briefs as well as establishing operations at several local government and privately managed venues across Australia. Katherine has undertaken a variety of producer roles either in a lead or co-producer capacity, working on major productions including Leader of the Pack, The Boy From Oz, Hills for Hope, Smoky Dawson: A Life Remembered and CONNECTED. Board and other appointments include City Recital Hall Angel Place and the Hills Cooperative Limited, alongside directorship of Theatre Services for seven years, Associate Producer at Leader Entertainment and director of Theatre One Productions and Management Services.
She has also assisted several councils and arts organisations in securing project and operational funding for both arts facilities and touring work.
Katherine is the Executive Director at PAC Australia, delivering the organisation’s sector development, capacity building and advocacy priorities.
Luke has enjoyed a varied career over the last twenty years in roles such as programming, producing, planning, management, tour development, not-for-profit boards, events, festivals, galleries, box office, and regional arts projects with organisations such as arTour, Brisbane City Council, Gympie Regional Council, Brisbane Powerhouse, Queensland Performing Arts Centre, Flipside Circus, Playlab, and Edinburgh venue, The Gilded Balloon. He is passionate about bringing people together, building effective teams, and nurturing new opportunities and ideas for the sector.
Prior to joining PAC Australia Luke was Manager Gympie Venues and Events and responsible for Gympie Regional Council’s cultural facilities, major events, and cultural development activities. From 2014 – 2018 he worked as the Creative Broker for Queensland’s centre, arTour (business unit of Circa Contemporary Circus) supporting producers and presenters throughout Queensland to develop a strong touring sector through touring services, network development and capacity building. Luke has travelled extensively throughout regional and remote Queensland to identify and support new touring initiatives between artists, regional presenters, and Councils.
Lynda de Koning
Lynda has over twenty years’ experience in the arts sector across a wide variety of roles for producers, presenters and government organisations in the areas of arts policy, management, producing, programming and festival coordination.
Most recently, Lynda worked for Arts South Australia as Principal Special Projects and Policy Officer, supporting arts policy with a specific focus on the delivery of the Arts and Culture Plan South Australia 2019 – 2024.
As Program and Tour Coordinator for Patch Theatre Company for over five years, Lynda coordinated the company’s program, as well as brokered and managed Patch Theatre’s national tours, including Yo Diddle Diddle and Emily Loves to Bounce.
At the Adelaide Festival Centre Trust, as Program Executive Lynda produced their music program and as Programming Coordinator, Lynda focused on the delivery of the OzAsia Festival, including the OzAsia Festival Symposium from 2007 – 2009. Lynda has also held the roles of General Manager for Writers SA and Company Manager for Riverland Youth Theatre.
After graduating in 2001 with a B.A in Theatre Production from BAPA (now Federation Uni) Stacey went onto specialize by completing an Adv. Diploma in Stage Management at Swinburn TAFE. Since completing her education Stacey has worked throughout the country in both Stage and Production Management for variety of Australia’s top professional theatre companies and producers including, Melbourne Theater Company, Hothouse Theatre, Queensland Theatre Co, Playbox, SEL and GFO. As well as an ongoing position as the Production Assistant for Melbourne International Arts Festival from 2012-15, Stacey’s focus since has been Production Management and Events where she has been instrumental in the smooth running of a number of Melbourne’s biggest events including the AFL Grand Final Parade, Moomba Parade, New Year’s Eve Celebrations, Big Picture Fest – Frankston.
Liz Newell is a playwright and producer based on Whadjuk Noongar Boodjar with an interest in positive and empowering representations of queerness. They grew up in Menang country where they worked as an arts journalist and, briefly, a place called Whale World. In 2014 they were a member of Black Swan State Theatre Company’s Emerging Writers Group. In 2016 they founded Maiden Voyage Theatre Company to champion the voices of women and queer artists, and produced their play Belated (dir. Emily McLean) at The Blue Room Theatre. In 2017 their play Alone Outside premiered (dir. Bridget Le May) as part of FRINGE WORLD Festival, and was a finalist for the Martin Sims Award for Best New WA Work. In 2017 Liz’s play Toast (dir. Emily McLean) premiered, winning the Blue Room Theatre Award for Best Production, and Best Performance. Toast was also a finalist for the 2017 Performing Arts WA Awards for Best New Work, and Best Independent Production. In 2018 Alone Outside premiered in Melbourne produced by Lab Kelpie. In 2022 Toast was redeveloped and remounted as part of Black Swan State Theatre Company’s program, where they are currently an Associate Writer. Liz has worked in various capacities for PAC Australia, Perth Festival, FRINGE WORLD Festival, and The Last Great Hunt.
Marketing and Communications
Beck Grace is a marketing and communication design specialist with 15 years working for leading arts organisations. Prior to joining the PAC Australia team Beck was the Head of Marketing at Circa Contemporary Circus where she managed strategy, brand, design, digital and content across the company. Beck was a key member of the team that built a fresh approach to touring in Queensland with arTour, under Circa’s management for eight years. In this role Beck advised artists, producers, and presenters in Queensland on crafting strategic event marketing campaigns and building audiences.
Beck now enjoys working with a diverse range of individuals and organisations as both a marketing and design consultant to help bring brands to life, tell stories, and build audiences.
Criena Gehrke is Chief Executive Officer of HOTA, Home of the Arts. She has a diverse and eclectic background in arts management and a particular passion for the role of arts and culture in building strong and connected communities. She’s worked with all tiers of government on the development and implementation of cultural policy.
Under her leadership as the Executive Director of Arts Access Victoria, one of Australia’s leading cultural development organisations, she developed a range of key initiatives to increase access for disadvantaged communities. She has been a peer assessor for Creative Victoria and The Australia Council for the Arts and is a member of the Griffith Centre for Social and Cultural Research Advisory Group. Criena is also a past recipient of the prestigious Harvard Business Club Victoria Non-Profit Fellowship.
Before taking up the reins at HOTA, Home of the Arts Criena was Executive Coordinator of City of Gold Coast’s Arts and Culture Unit where she led the development of the City’s 2023 Culture Strategy. As CEO of HOTA, Home of the Arts, a vibrant arts precinct on the Gold Coast, Criena is leading the charge to embed arts and culture at the centre of the city, creating a legacy for future generations. Criena oversaw the recent development of the precinct including the addition of a $37.5m Outdoor Stage, a $19.5m pedestrian bridge connecting HOTA to Surfers Paradise, and the most recent addition (opened May 2021), a $60.5m brand new, AAA rated, international standard HOTA Gallery. Under Criena’s leadership, HOTA, Home of the Arts will welcome more than 1m people every year and is becoming known as a must visit cultural destination.
Peter is a graduate of the Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts (1997). He has worked professionally in the entertainment industry since 1987 as a producer, director and actor.
He is currently employed by Tamworth Regional Council, initially as the Theatre Director of the Capitol Theatre Tamworth (2009 to 2012) and then as the Manager of Entertainment Venues, which programs and manages the Capitol Theatre Tamworth, Tamworth War Memorial Town Hall, Tamworth Regional Entertainment Conference Centre and Tamworth Community Centre. Peter is the Executive Producer and Director of the Golden Guitar Awards.
Peter is Chair of the Board for the Tamworth Regional Conservatorium of Music and is on the boards of NAPACA (NSW & ACT Performing Arts Centres Association ) and Arts North West. He was on the board of Arts On Tour for 8 years up until April 2020.
Ian has had some 25 plus years associated with the industry, across Australia, Asia, UK and Europe and, to a lesser degree the US, having lived and worked in Australia, Hong Kong and the UK. While predominantly as a technology supplier, he has also spent considerable time as a speaker and consultant across all of these regions.
From first entering the sector, as a complete novice to what was a very different environment to today, he has grown with and helped lead various regions, areas and verticals to positive outcomes, success and growth. He is now consulting with various supplier partners as well as state, national and, to a lesser degree, international associations. Separate to his “day” job, he has also been engaged in mentoring both “up and comers” and those needing/seeking guidance and support, for most of his business life.
This has been staff, friends of friends, business associates and introduced contacts. He is a long term member of ILM (Institute of Leaders and Managers), VMA (Venue Management Association) and was honored with a Lifetime Honorary Membership of PACA in 2018.
Drew Dymond is manager of the Albany Entertainment Centre which is a Perth Theatre Trust venue, owned and run by the State Government of Western Australia.
The venue caters for the broader community of the Great Southern, has a 600 seat auditorium, conference rooms , studio and restaurant. Programming is a mix of local content, school shows, State and National touring, tribute bands and everything in between.
Prior to this role Drew was the technical director for the Perth Festival for 18 years.
Drew is also President of Folkworld inc. the organisation that produces WA Fairbridge Festival , committee member for CircuitWest and board member for Parklands primary school in Albany.
Current Director of Kukuni Arts, and Principal Project Manager, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Arts Strategy at Arts SA, with 15 years of experience in the arts and culture sector. A creative producer and arts worker with a primary focus on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander arts practice within both visual and performing arts. Experienced across multiple contexts including: Indigenous and non-Indigenous festivals, state arts institutions, peak arts funding bodies, national and international arts markets, multi-artform and experimental art genres, and community engaged arts praxis.
Kerri Glasscock is the founding co-director of artist run company 505 which own the legendary live music club Venue 505 in Surry Hills, and award winning Old 505 Theatre in Newtown. Beyond the walls of 505 Kerri Glasscock has worked in various roles in the Sydney arts scene as performer, director and theatre practitioner. In 2013 she was appointed as CEO & Festival Director of the Sydney Fringe Festival with a tenure till 2021. Under her stewardship the festival has grown from a small community event to the largest independent arts festival in NSW, presenting the work of over 2000 artists across 25 postcode areas of Sydney each year.
A vocal advocate for the Independent sector she has contributed to a number of key action plans and resulting policy reforms including the Committee for Sydney’s- Sydney a 24 Hour City Report the City of Sydney’s Live Music and Performance Action Plan, Inner West Council’s Off Broadway Plan. In her role at Sydney Fringe Festival she works extensively leading the way in temporary re-adaptive use of space for performance that has resulted in the 2018 report: An Anthology of Space: Activating Unused and Under-utilised Space for the Performing and Creative Industries of NSW.
She is currently a member of the NSW State Government’s 24 Hour Economy Strategy Industry Advisory Group, a Co-Chair of the City of Sydney’s Cultural Sector Advisory Committee, is a founding Board Member of the Night Time Industries Association and sits on the Multi Arts and Festival Art Form Board for the State Government of NSW. She served as a Director of the City Recital Hall Board from 2015-2019 and was included in the Sydney Morning Herald Sydney Magazine’s annual 100 Most Influential and Inspiring People List in 2011.
Rachel Healy has been working in executive positions in the arts and cultural sector in Adelaide, Melbourne and Sydney for nearly thirty years including as Director of Performing Arts for Sydney Opera House, General Manager of Belvoir Street Theatre and roles at the State Theatre Company of South Australia, Handspan Theatre and The Australian Ballet. More recently she was Executive Manager, Culture for the City of Sydney, where she was responsible for developing the City’s first cultural policy and its live music and performance action plan.
She has also worked as a cultural industries consultant and producer and has held governance roles on the boards of many cultural organisations and government agencies including the Sydney Opera House Trust, Live Performance Australia, Arts on Tour, Legs on the Wall, Arts NSW, Sydney Writers’ Festival, Hothouse Theatre, the Industry Advisory Board at the University of Technology Sydney’s Faculty of Design, Architecture and Building. She served as Deputy Chair of the Theatre Board of the Australia Council and been a member of the Major Performing Arts Panel of the Australia Council since June 2014.
In 2015, Rachel and director Neil Armfield were appointed Joint Artistic Directors of the Adelaide Festival for 2017, 2018 and 2019. In October 2017, their terms were extended to include the 2020 and 2021 Adelaide Festivals.
Simon Hinton has been Artistic Director / CEO of Merrigong Theatre Company since 2005, managing the Illawarra Performing Arts Centre and the Wollongong Town Hall. He has worked in a range of arts industry positions over the last 20 years, including as Marketing Manager of Queensland Theatre Company and Executive Officer of Ausdance (NSW). He has served on numerous industry boards and committees, currently including the Helpmann Awards Regional Touring (Chair), Industry and Children’s Presentation Panels, the Ausdance National Board and the Create NSW Theatre Board. Under his leadership, Merrigong has built a reputation as one of Australia’s most successful regional companies – producing, presenting and touring exciting contemporary theatre.
Louisa has worked as a theatre producer and programmer for the past 15 years in a wide range of contexts from London’s West End to women’s prisons. Since 2013 she has worked for Country Arts South Australia producing and programming across a variety of regional communities and art forms statewide. Since 2015 she has been a Helpmann Awards panel member. Prior to relocating to Australia, Louisa worked as a producer in the UK for some of the UK’s leading theatre companies and venues including Headlong Theatre, Clean Break and Soho Theatre in London. Between 2007-10 she worked as General Manager at Clean Break theatre company producing shows at Soho Theatre, Arcola Theatre, London International Festival of Theatre & in women’s prisons in UK. In 2009 she was a recipient of the Rupert Rhymes Bursary which she used to tour a new Palestinian play to refugee camps in the West Bank. Between 2005-7 she worked for Ladder to the Moon producing pioneering interactive theatre residencies in hospitals & care homes in London. From 2007- 12 Louisa ran Stellar Network, connecting professionals in theatre, film and tv industries into cross platform projects.
She recently completed a Masters in Cultural Leadership at NIDA. She has been a member of the Helpmann Regional touring panel since 2015 and is currently an ISPA fellow.
She is passionate that the arts offer a powerful tool for social change.
Shayne Price is the Manager of Arts and Cultural Services for the City of Whitehorse. He commenced with the City as the Coordinator of the Whitehorse Performing Arts Centre and responsible for season programming and venue management. Shayne has played a key role in the feasibility and business planning for the redevelopment of its performing arts centre. In addition to performing arts Shayne’s portfolio extends into festivals, art collection, community art and heritage services. Shayne has been on the Executive Committee of the Victorian Association of Performing Arts Centre (VAPAC) since 2011.
Candice Sheldon has over 10 years’ experience in Human Resources having worked across various areas of government, health and the arts. Candice is current Head of Human Resources for Queensland Ballet, leading the human resources/employment relations function to enable the company to deliver high quality people management solutions and best practice in Human Resources management. As a WELL Accredited Professional, Candice is also currently supporting the development and delivery of the WELL International Standard certification for the Thomas Dixon Centre, West End. Passionate about diversity and inclusion, Candice is an advocate for human resources across the arts, working to promote and ensure fairness, inclusivity, balance and wellbeing in the workplace.