Artistic panel



Kat Henry

Kat Henry is a contemporary theatre director and performance artist with a diverse portfolio working around Australia and internationally across the mediums of text based plays, opera, musicals, rock concerts, physical theatre performance, multimedia performance, live art and other hybrid works.

Kat is on the Queensland Theatre Company’s National Artistic Team, and is based in Melbourne. She has directed for numerous companies including the Melbourne Theatre Company, Queensland Theatre Company, La Boite Theatre Company, Red Stitch Actors’ Theatre, and NIDA. In 2015 she was part of the Melbourne Theatre Company’s Women Directors’ Program and in 2016 is in the MTC’s Women in Theatre Program. From 2013 – 2015 Kat was Executive Artist at MKA: Theatre of New Writing. 

 From 2008 to 2012 Kat was associated with the Queensland Theatre Company for whom she was nominated for the Matilda Award as Best Director and has been Resident Director in their GreenHouse program. She has worked as an assistant director at the Melbourne Theatre Company, Sydney Theatre Company and Queensland Theatre Company.

Kat is a graduate of NIDA (Postgraduate Directing), is currently studying her PhD in contemporary performance at Monash University, has a B.A. (Religion) with First Class Honours (Phenomenology and Live Art Performance), an Adv. Dip. of Arts (Acting), and has studied Shakespeare at LAMDA (London Academy of Dramatic Art).

Alice Muhling

Alice Muhling is a creative producer, arts worker and writer. Originally hailing from the Sunshine State, Alice has worked in a number of creative roles for companies such as Magnum Photos (UK), Map Magazine, Time Off and Queensland Theatre Company.

As Program Manager of Brisbane Festival, Alice was Secretariat of the Australia Council’s Confederation of Australian International Arts Festivals Inc and Brisbane Festival’s Indigenous Advisory Committee. Alice is particularly committed to supporting emerging and mid-career artists and has enjoyed the privilege of working with interdisciplinary artists from China, Timor-Leste, Australia and South America, amongst others.

She is currently the Company Manager for Malthouse Theatre and is thrilled to be involved in Poppy Seed.

Emma Valente

Emma is a multi disciplined theatre artist and the co artistic director and founder of THE RABBLE. THE RABBLE has received multiple commendations and Green Room nominations, including winning a Green Room Award for Design Integration on Special and have also been Company in Residence at Melbourne Writers’ Festival and Malthouse Theatre in 2014.Emma’s recent directing, lighting design and creation credits include: Cain and Abel (THE RABBLE: Belvoir St Theatre), Frankenstein (THE RABBLE: Malthouse), Room of Regret (MIAF, Theatre Works, THE RABBLE), Story of O (Neon Festival, MTC, THE RABBLE) Orlando (THE RABBLE MIAF, Helium Program – Malthouse, Brisbane International Arts Festival), Special (Carlton Courthouse THE RABBLE), The Bedroom Project (Linden Gallery THE RABBLE) Cageling (CarriageWorks – Fortyfivedownstairs – THE RABBLE), Salome: In Cogito (THE RABBLE, CarriageWorks).

Emma has lectured for Monash University, Box Hill TAFE, National Theatre Drama School, Melbourne Writer’s Festival, Writers Victoria, VCA, Melbourne University, Swinburne University, Melbourne Emerging Writers’ Festival and Box Hill TAFE. Emma is currently employed by Ramus Illumination as a design associate on several large scale lighting installations, projection works and interactive art works.

Andy Turner

Andy Turner hails from the UK, where he trained in technical theatre and lighting design at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art. He has a wide range of live arts technical experience, having worked with many of the UK's leading arts organisations. Andy continues to enjoy a career in theatre, currently facilitating and supporting the busy schedule of produced work at fortyfivedownstairs.

Bert LaBonte

Bert is one of Australia’s leading men of Stage and Screen. Throughout his career, Bert has worked with principal Australian theatre companies including MTC, STC and Bell Shakespeare. Known for a variety of shows across the country including Birdland, Timeshare, The Good Person of Szechwan, Let’s Get It On, When I Fall in Love- The Nat King Cole Story, The Mountaintop (Green Room Award Nominee) and original cast member of Rupert (MTC and Washington US Tour).

Other theatre credits include, Theramene in Bell Shakespeare’s Phedre Elling, Clybourne Park, Next to Normal, A Behanding in Spokane, Richard III, The Hypocrite, Don Juan in Soho, Madwoman of Chaillo, Tom Foolery, and A Female of the Species, for MTC. The Grenade- STC25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee (nomination for Helpmann Award) MTC/STC, Much Ado About Nothingand A Midsummer Night’s Dreamfor Essential Theatre..

Musical theatre include production of An Officer and a Gentleman (Helpmann Award Winner), Chess, Kismet, Grey Gardens, Pippin,, Full Monty, Jesus Christ Superstar, Showboat and Guys and Dolls.

Film credits include Animal Kingdom, Nightmares and Dreamscapes, Rats and Cats, Evil Never Dies, Salem’s Lot, The Cook and The Pugilist at Rest!

Television credits include Winner’s and Losers, Upper Middle Bogan, SeaPatrol IV, Wilfred II, Lowdown, Neighbours, Good Guys Bad Guys, Blue Heelers, Simone De Beauvoir’s Babies, Backberner, Flipper, City Homicide, Bogan Pride .z

Jerry Remkes

In 2012, Jerry relocated from Amsterdam to Melbourne, where he is currently employed as Programmer, Performing Arts for Arts Centre Melbourne. What has always inspired his career is to be as creative, authentic and dedicated in his managerial work as he sees artists be in their artistic work. Jerry thoroughly enjoys combining management, finance, marketing and artistic content to realize ambitious ideas, and to bring with the resulting products awe, enjoyment, thought and debate to audiences. Jerry became an executive producer in 1999 and worked for European dance companies including Anoukvandijk dc. Jerry became experienced in the international performing arts field when he began managing the Theatre Institute of the Netherlands as well as curating the Dutch Dance Festival.

Xander Woollard

As Artistic Director of The Butterfly Club, Alexander produces 50 shows for 50 weeks of the year while completing his BA/BMus at the Australian Catholic University. Xander begun working at The Butterfly Club as a casual bartender in 2006, and rose through the ranks until his promotion to venue manager in 2011. Thanks to his keen eye for talent and relatable attitude, The Butterfly Club continues to enjoy a program of hundreds of artists every year.

Xander is responsible for programming, operations, venue staff, ticketing, and compliance.

Emily Tomlins

Emily Tomlins is a performer, theatre-maker and is co-founder of Elbow Room, a contemporary performance ensemble based in Melbourne. Her theatre credits include After All This, As We Mean To Go On, Rule of Three, a tiny chorus, There (Elbow Room), The Temptation of St Anthony (Four Larks), The Plague Dances (Four Larks/Malthouse), Edward Gant’s Amazing Feats of Loneliness (Sydney Theatre Company/La Boite), Julius Caesar, Operator, Crèche and Burn, Urban Dingoes (La Boite), Hamlet (Queensland Theatre Company/South Australian State Theatre Company), Puss in Boots, The Woman Before, Constance Drinkwater and the Final Days of Somerset, Far Away (Queensland Theatre Company), Actors at Work 2008 (Bell Shakespeare), The Greater Plague (Restaged Histories Project), Voices (Queensland Arts Council Tour), Harriers (Front Theatre).

Eugyeene Teh

Eugyeene is a costume and set designer, with credits at companies including MTC, Malthouse Theatre and Sydeny Chamber Opera. Eugyeene recently designed costumes for MTC’s Endgame and set and costumes for Malthouse Theatre’s Meme Girls and A Social Service. As a key artist for Little Ones Theatre, he has designed Dracula, Dangerous Liaisons for MTC’s NEON season, Psycho Beach Party , Salome for Malthouse Helium Season and The House of Yes. As the resident artist at MKA in 2012, he designed the set and costumes for sex.violence.blood.gore, The Unspoken Word is ‘Joe’ and Triangle. Other recent credits include Melbourne Festival’s The Trouble with Harry, Palace of the End and Watch This Production’s Pacific Overtures. With director Adena Jacobs, he designed Elektra, Cleansed and Sydney Chamber Opera’s Exil. With director Samara Hersch, he designed costumes for Next Wave’s Hello There, We’ve been Waiting for You and set and costumes for House, NOA and short film SUPER, selected for the 2014 Other Film Festival. With Natalie Cursio, he designed Blizzard and Private Dances. For the 2009 Melbourne International Arts Festival, he designed sculptures for the Shelter: On Kindness exhibition with LAB Architecture. Last year, Eugyeene undertook the placement in the Besen Family Artist Program at the Malthouse Theatre. He has been nominated for three Green Room Awards for Triangle, The Trouble with Harry and Pacific Overtures

Risnske Ginsberg

Rinske Ginsberg has over 30 years experience as a teacher, performer, devisor, dramaturge and artistic consultant. She is Lecturer in Movement in Theatre at the Faculty of VCA, and regularly mentors artists across a range of art forms. Her skills and expertise include the development of a physical/kinaesthetic grammar, physical storytelling, Pilates, circus skills, and devising theatre through various stylistic frames. She has just stepped down as Chair of Melbourne Fringe, sits on the Green Room Awards Independent Theatre panel and acts as an advisor to Arts Victoria. Rinske is committed to supporting the development of new work and is continuing to research and develop her own pedagogical practice in actor training.

Rachael Maza

Rachael Maza is a Yidinji from North Queensland and Meriam from Torres Strait Island of Mer. Rachael is Artistic Director for ILBIJERRI Theatre (2008 – present) and brings with her a wealth of acting, directing, dramaturgical experience and profile as well as a strong commitment and passion to further Ilbijerri’s vision of creating an Indigenous brand of theatre that resonates with local, national and international audiences.   

Rachael is well known throughout both the Indigenous and non-Indigenous communities as a presenter on ABCs ‘Messagestick’ and for her performance in the film ‘Radiance’ and an acting coach for the film ‘Rabbit Proof Fence.’ She performed in the highly acclaimed production of ‘Sapphires’, directed Internationally and Nationally touring ‘Jack Charles V the Crown’ for Ilbijerri Theatre, Narrator for the Black Arm Band’s “Murrundak’ and Co-creator/Performer “BEAUTIFUL ONE DAY”(Belvoir/Version1.0/Ilbijerri Theatre)..

Rachael has a long history with ILBIJERRI THEATRE COMPANY directing several seasons of STOLEN, working as a dramaturge and director on the VICTORIAN INDIGENOUS PLAYWRIGHTS CONFERENCE (VIPC) and has worked extensively in the industry as a Director, Dramaturge and Actor. Rachael received the 2003 "Uncle Bob Maza Memorial Award" for Outstanding Contribution to Victorian Indigenous Theatre at the Victorian Indigenous Performing Arts (VIPA) Awards. 

Directing Credits include: “Stolen”(Ilbijerri Theatre), “Chopped Liver” (Ilbijerri Theatre); “YANDY” (Black Swan Theatre Co); “SHOW US YOUR TIDDA’s” (Melbourne Workers Theatre; “Jack Charles V the Crown” (Ilbijerri); FOLEY (Ilbijerri);

Rachael currently sits on the Board of The Black Arm Board, APACC, As well as the Circus OZ Indigenous Advisory Panel, and Australian Opera’s Indigenous Advisory panel. This will be Rachael’s 4th year as a panelist for the Balnaves Indigenous Playwrights Award. And 2016 is her 1st year on the Greenroom Award Panel ‘Theatre Company’.

mark pritchard

Mark is a dramaturg, director and theatre-maker trained at the VCA (Directing), PACT, and the University of Wollongong (Performance). His practice focuses on new work development and hybrid dramaturgy. Mark is Resident Dramaturg at Malthouse Theatre, which encompasses literary management, programming assistance, and providing dramaturgical support across the company’s activities. Recent projects include Blak Cabaret (Malthouse/Sydney Festival), Love and Information (Malthouse/STC), and coordinating Malthouse’s new writing programs. 

Mark is co-director of NO SHOW with Bridget Balodis, with whom he has co-created The Séance (LaBoite Indie 2013, 2012 Melbourne Fringe), Unfinished Business (You Are Here Festival 2013, Crack Theatre Festival 2013) Outside Line (Pop Up Playground, 2013) and Shotgun Wedding (2012 Next Wave Festival). 

Recent directing credits include Triumph by Louris van de Geer (NWG, fortyfivedownstairs), Wael Zuaiter: Unknown by Jesse Cox (Next Wave) and 4000 Miles by Amy Herzog (Red Stitch). Mark has been a board member for Next Wave, and a member of the New Working Group.

Sonya Suares

Sonya’s theatre credits include A Midsummer Night's Dream, Arcadia, The Vagina Monologues, Rappaccini's Daughter, One for the Road, In the Family, The Pajama Game, Don Giovanni and Madame Butterfly. With both Complete Works Theatre Company and Essential Theatre, she’s toured Shakespeare into schools and wineries across Australia and NZ. Her screen credits include Wil, Knowing, My Year Without Sex and The Last Ride (feature films) and Ocean Girl, Wicked Science, Rush, Very Small Business, East West 101, Prank Patrol, Lowdown, Winners & Losers, It's A Date and Legally Brown (TV).  From 2009-12, Sonya was the General Manager of Red Stitch; in 2013, she commenced as the Artistic Coordinator at the Monash Academy of Performing Arts and founded independent theatre company, Watch This, producing and performing Assassins (2013), Pacific Overtures (2014) and Company (2015) to abundant critical acclaim and a total of 12 Green Room Award nominations! Also in 2015, she performed in Elbow Room’s sell-out smash We Get It (MTC Neon Festival), delivered the inaugural Poppy Seed Festival as Festival Director and more importantly, her daughter Naiya, who together with Daniel remain her all-time favourite productions.