Two become one… Welcome to the Australian Performing Arts Exchange [APAX] 2020


Across the week of 7 – 11 September 2020 and in partnership with our venue host NIDA, APAX will wrap up all the best bits of our relationship-focussed market with the mind-blowing thought-leadership of our conference under one new banner.

Liz Hughes, CEO of the National Institute of Dramatic Art, stated, “We’re delighted to be partnering with PAC Australia to bring APAX to NIDA in 2020. As a key event for performing arts professionals we’re excited to play our part in supporting the industry and engaging in valuable discussion and networking. I look forward to welcoming delegates to NIDA and seeing some of the best creative projects and audience development strategies come to life.”

So what does APAX 2020 have in store…

Attendees can expect presentations of over 50 of the best creative projects on offer from across Australia preceding a conference this year curated by PAC Australia’s Katherine Connor. We invite you into the important conversation around engaging, expanding and nourishing the arts ‘family’, in every sense of the word. This conversation has never been more timely and pressing than it is now.

Katherine said, “However you define ‘family’, whether audiences, your organisation, your community or the sector as a whole, there’s a conversation to be had at APAX about what’s most important to you… and to your family.There’s no doubt that in 2020, we will have emerged as a sector that even 5 years ago we may not have recognised. Let’s grab the reins and be the new architects of the future of the arts in our communities. The title and theme for APAX 2020 is Us. This is family work.



We are an industry with so much potential – all the people we have in our family, from the 12 million audience attendances our members enable every year, to the Minister himself, we have a collective strength and impact that we plan to acknowledge, value and celebrate.

Don’t take our word for it – Industry Support for PAC Australia’s Performing Arts Exchange and Conference. 

Important dates

Applications to present at APAX 2020 will open soon.

An applications webinar with all the juicy details on how/when/why pitch at APAX will be held for all interested producers at a time to be confirmed.

Registrations will open in early May, including a priority-booking period for members.

Check back here soon for more information.

PAC Australia Members enjoy significant discounts on registration prices. If you are not already a member join now to save on your registration. 

PAC Australia acknowledges the Bidjigal and Gadigal peoples as the traditional owners of the land on which APAX 2020 will be held. We pay respect to Elders past, present and emerging.

PAC Australia’s 33rd Conference and National Performing Arts Exchange.

26-29 August 2019, Sunshine Coast, Queensland

We loved seeing you all on the Sunshine Coast at the 2019 Performing Arts Exchange and Conference REAP: More. Deeper. Different.

The Events Centre, Caloundra was home for more than 400 delegates, including Australia’s leading artists and arts managers taking a practical, real-world problem-solving approach to presenting performing arts across Australia.

If you were unable to join us, be sure to follow us on Facebook to catch our conference live stream, keynote recordings and more coming soon!

Thank you to our 2019 partners without whom the Conference and Performing Arts Exchange would not have been possible



2018 Conference

PAC Australia’s 32nd annual performing arts conference “Making Space” and our national Performing Arts Exchange [PAX] took place at the Red Earth Arts Precinct, Karratha between 2 – 6 September, 2018.

With Chris Bendall at the helm as PAX MC and Karilyn Brown as our “thinker in residence” for the conference, delegates from across the country explored a region where the oldest and newest art on the planet co-exists.

With full length works from The Last Great Hunt, Tura New Music, Black Swan State Theatre Company & Yirra Yaakin Theatre Company as well as a spectacular performance from Big hART on site with community in Roebourne, the Performing Arts Exchange brought together producers and presenters from across Australia and New Zealand to maximise touring opportunities and build relationships.

Making Space was all about where we live, and the space that is common to us all, across gender, culture and environment. We asked, how does place inform the art we make and present, and how does that art create identity and shape the places we live?

Check out our Conference Materials page to re-experience the moving keynote addresses from Sigal Cohen, Dr Richard Walley and Dr Gill Hicks.

The five day event culminated in the extra special conference dinner at the historic ghost town of Cossack where the best in Australian touring was commended at our annual Drover Awards ceremony.

The 2018 conference and Performing Arts Exchange was truly an adventure as much it was a conference.

2017 Conference

PAC Australia’s 31st annual performing arts conference “Outside, In” and our national Performing Arts Exchange [PAX] took place at The Concourse, Sydney between August 21-14, 2017 and once again exceeded previous attendances.

The two events saw Robyn Archer return, as PAX MC and “thinker in residence” for the conference. In this role, Robyn’s insightful commentary was an absolute highlight. Her ability to weave together the various intellectual threads presented by speakers into an incisive, intelligent and entertaining whole was awe-inspiring.

Other highlights included Dee Madigan’s keynote address on “Why Creativity Matters (and not just on stage!)”, jam-packed with smart and practical advice for winning over not just the public but funding bodies, potential supporters and staff. Jennifer Whelan’s discussion of unconscious bias and its presence in the arts, and how that impacts on our programming and creative decisions, was another game-changer; engaging and eye-opening. Both these speakers and many others on the program were thought-provoking, especially in relation to the choices we make in the work we present to audiences.

The conference concluded with a gala dinner at Luna Park, with special guest the Honourable Senator Mitch Fifield Federal Minister for the Arts.

Visit the conference materials page for videos and presentation materials from the 2017 event and previous years conferences.