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What Kristine Did Next: Pioneering Cultural Diversity Through Bespoke Practice

Kristine Landon-Smith
Kristine Landon-Smith’s involvement at TNN’s Building Audience Diversity event last year ( had the room buzzing. Her departure from NIDA to work on her freelance career in the UK and Australia has us buzzing again.
TNN spoke with Kristine about the value of her work at NIDA over the past three years and where she sees that value extending in the coming years - in our communities and across the theatre industry more broadly.
‘Lynne Williams [the then CEO of NIDA] invited me as a Lecturer in Acting at NIDA to apply my intracultural expertise and to look at diversity across the organisation’ says Landon-Smith who refers to NIDA’s openness to her work as ‘as a pioneering move for diversity in Australian theatre’.
‘Lynne’s invitation enabled me to consider grassroots intervention in a mainstream context rather than from the margins’ she says.
During Kristine’s time at NIDA the organisation has focused on ensuring a real diversity in the student body which is encouraging. ‘Our current acting cohorts are phenomenally diverse which is quite unusual in the mainstream’, says Landon-Smith.
‘I provided an intracultural bespoke practice encouraging students to bring their own cultural histories to their work. The impact of this is that students start to see the positives of working from a more diverse range of sources and from their own cultural context rather than a neutral one. I believe, and my practice and teaching is based on the understanding, that we have to utilize and play with difference because we are all different but we are all different together’.
NIDA’s Applied Theatre Studio Elective written by Kristine is a significant step in applying these principles at an industry and community level. This course gives students the tools to make work in different social, political, and cultural contexts. The students go out and make work in and with the community. The students are supported not only by NIDA staff but by leading theatre practitioners working across cultural diversity.
‘In leaving I know that the students who have been involved in the applied theatre course have picked up the baton and, in working with the community and established directors, are at the forefront of how we work culturally and theatrically’.
One of those directors is TNN Board Member, Claudia Chidiac. TNN quizzed Claudia on her involvement as a mentor on the program.
‘They’ve really embraced the idea of engaging communities and its helped them articulate their own stories and given them exposure to something quite different to what they’d ordinarily learn as actors and its allowing them to talk to their own communities’ says Chidiac. ‘If they weren’t doing this project these students would not be as connected or to reconnect with their culture and this informs and develops a well-rounded artist’.
‘I remember I walked into the room and they were all women of diverse communities and they were all ready. They were ready to do something different. And I was really excited by that and I thought to myself, they are going to have a few things to say about the world and they are going to do that through theatre’.

Oh and keep an eye out at ‘bAKEHOUSE Theatre Company’ in 2017 for what Kristine does next…



Accessible Arts NSW

Closing this afternoon!
Accessible Arts NSW small grants program
(for grants of $5,000 - $20,000) closes 5pm, Monday 4 April via Smartygrants.

For more information:

Jury's Out

Arts organisations will learn whether or not their applications for Four Year Funding have been successful in the week starting 9 May.

The Australia Council announced the date on Friday, in an email sent to all applicants. ‘We will be contacting you in the week of May 9 to advise the outcome of your application, and a public announcement will be made in the week of May 16. After that date we will be in a position to have detailed discussions with all applicants about their new funding relationship with the Australia Council,’ wrote Frank Panucci, Executive Director, Grants and Engagement at the Australia Council for the Arts.

Memberships, Fellowships, Residencies, Call-Outs

National Theatre of Parramatta (NTofP) Call Out for auditions, producers, productions.

The National Theatre of Parramatta (NTofP) aims to source, commission and create diverse, bold and engaging theatre for audiences in Western Sydney and beyond.

We encourage artists and creators, both those we know and those we have yet to meet, to attend our open auditions and pitch sessions held each May.

New projects may be considered for production by the Company’s Directorate.

OPEN AUDITIONS – Tuesday 17th May
The Open Auditions are an opportunity for NTofP to meet and become aware of the pool of talent that is in Western Sydney, with a view to consideration for future productions.
These auditions provide an opportunity for the Directorate and company to meet you and where appropriate advise Directors of people for consideration for audition in our future productions.

OPEN PORTFOLIO (for Creatives) – Wednesday 18th May
The Open Portfolio is an opportunity for NTofP to meet and become aware of the pool of creative talent that is in Western Sydney, with a view to consideration for future productions.
This is an opportunity for set, lighting, sound, costume designers, dramaturgs and other creative to discuss their work and goals for the future.
Through this process we will be able to consider you for our productions.

PARRAPITCH –  Wednesday 18 May
ParraPitch is an opportunity for creators with ideas to discuss these with NTofP. The ParraPitch provides a platform for the creator to engage the directorate in a new production. If the directorate are interested in your idea they may invite the creator to an extract showing. It is envisaged that ideas from ParraPitch may progress to development stage.

National Theatre of Parramatta aims to create theatre that reflects contemporary Australia and Western Sydney in all its diversity and complexity appealing to both new and existing theatre audiences. National Theatre of Parramatta is putting the nation on stage. National Theatre of Parramatta was launched on November 19, 2015. As well as offering entertaining and innovative programs, National Theatre of Parramatta will champion artist development, educational opportunities and mentoring programs.

Visit our website for more information

Australia Council for the Art’s Leadership Program Now Open

The Leadership Program offers a dynamic suite of development opportunities for arts leaders at all career stages. Participants will share experiences, form dynamic connections, develop new skills and build confidence in their own capabilities. They will form networks and relationships, also share the benefits and outcomes of the program across their organisations and the wider arts community. Visit or click here to learn more about the background of the program.


Wanna Bite the Big Apple?

Bite the Big Apple: New York Arts & Cultural Management Tour is open for applications.
When: October 3 to 7, 2016
New York City opens it doors again to Australian arts professionals. Over five days you will talk to NYC arts industry leaders in intimate round-table settings. You will experience some of the world’s most important art institutions and hear from a range of arts advocacy and funding bodies. Extend your knowledge of audience diversification and development, social media, communications, curatorial and performance policies, community engagement and advocacy. 
Experience the world's most exciting arts city.

To request a program or get further information email:

PAX Perfect with APACA

Can't make the PAX Pitch Webinar this afternoon?
Never fear!  Full details about selection criteria, pitching opportunities, the webinar and an overview of PAX can be found here. The EOI process is very simple and you can access a PDF of the online form to help you prepare in advance of making your submission.

Awards and Newsy Bits…

ATYP, Bell and ACO moving to new venue!

Australian Theatre for Young People (ATYP) has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the NSW State Government which will see the company move into a bespoke theatre space and offices for the first time in its 50-year history. The Memorandum of Understanding has also been signed by organisations including Bell Shakespeare and the Australian Chamber Orchestra, and will see the complete redevelopment of Pier 2/3 in Walsh Bay. 

ATYP will be relocating from its existing facilities in Pier 4/5 to Pier 2/3. The new address will include a purpose built 200-seat theatre, two fully equipped dressing rooms, a green room, two new workshops and rehearsal spaces. There will also be a new office, meeting room and dedicated archive space to accommodate ATYP’s 17 staff.

What’s On: theatre industry events around the state and further afield

Next SAMAG Event:

The Future of Audience Research

Date: Monday 18 April 2016
Time: 6pm
Where: Barnet Long Room, Customs House, 31 Alfred Street, Circular Quay
Admission: Free (SAMAG Members) RSVP here
Non-member tickets $12.00 and students $6.00 via Eventbrite

The third SAMAG seminar for 2016 will focus on audience research. It will be an inspiring, informative and interactive discussion about commissioning, managing and applying audience research in arts and culture management. Our panel, to be announced shortly, bring experience from the arts, media and beyond.

We’ll discuss what the latest data says about how audiences are changing, and what it means for arts marketing, programming and fundraising. We’ll also hear from experts outside the arts about innovative approaches to research and analytics, and what the future holds for this exciting field.

Come and be inspired to kick-start your own research project, gather some tips and tricks, and test out some of the new audience research tools currently available. There will also be experts available to take your questions over a glass of wine afterwards.

Speakers: Leisa Bacon (ABC) and Dr Katya Johanson (Deakin University)

Accessing The Arts Group (ATAG)

Interested in providing access and inclusion in the arts? ATAG’s next meeting: is on Friday 8 April from 3pm – 5pm at the Art Gallery of NSW auditorium. On the Agenda:
  • Danielle Gullotta will present on a couple of access programs at the Art Gallery
  • Sarah Houbolt, Strategic Projects Manager with Accessible Arts NSW, raises 2 important topics for discussion: who pays for access and how do we evaluate access? Please arrive at the Gallery at 2.45pm to start at 3pm. Please share this information with your interested colleagues and RSVP to by Monday 4 April.
Accessing The Arts Group is for NSW arts organisations and venues who are interested in providing access and inclusion in the arts, sharing ideas and best practice, and networking for peer support.

ATYP holiday workshops

Working over the April School Holidays? Have kids? Have a look at ATYP holiday workshops:

What Chekhov Ate

Sport for Jove has come up with a great way to build interest in its upcoming production of Chekhov’s Three Sisters with its recently announced ‘The Anton Project’. Once a month they’re providing study seminars on Chekhov’s life and work, including Russian history, dance, writing, and even cooking! 

Everyone is welcome to this series of talks and events in the months leading up to the production. For more information go to:

Marketing Summit 2016: Valuing the Arts

Never before has there been a more important time to celebrate the value of our great arts and artists, from all over the world and from our many and varied cultures. The arts offer their audiences experiences that they value. This Summit connects these values, the experiencers, the audiences and the work of arts marketers and administrators. We will explore many themes as arts marketers:
  • What values do we look for in the arts?
  • The value of virality?
  • Leading with the values and significance of your community?
  • Valuing the arts in the future…
We will celebrate some of the best arts marketing campaigns of the past year and solve some of your marketing puzzles for you. Network with your colleagues and make new connections. Registrations are now open to secure your spot at the Summit in Adelaide. 

Delegate registration fee is $350 which includes your morning and afternoon teas, lunches and evening networking receptions on both days. For more go to:
If you need assistance or further advice on any of the material in this e-news please don't hesitate to contact us. If you have information to share with your NSW colleagues please send it to Jane Kreis, Director at 
Look forward to catching up around the sector,
Jane Kreis

Theatre Network NSW
Theatre Network NSW is assisted by the NSW Government through Arts NSW
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