A new national organisation to develop great new Australian writing for performance – PlayWriting Australia – has been created.
PlayWriting Australia will drive the development, advocacy and diversity of Australian drama and facilitate a national conversation about writing for performance.
A reinvigorated national playwrights conference will continue, with the next event in Canberra in July 2007.
Michael Gow, chair of PlayWriting Australia, said the direction for the fledgling organisation was set at its first board meeting in November.
‘We are aiming to devise innovative and responsive models for the development of new scripts.
‘We will be building on some of the excellent existing structures that were created by our predecessor organisations – the Australian National Playwrights Centre and Playworks.
‘We aim to create a dynamic national organisation that will quickly gain a reputation as a national hub for script development and which is central to theatre culture in Australia,’ Mr Gow said.
The board is made up of nine leading figures from Australian theatre:
- Michael Gow (chair) – artistic director and playwright, Queensland Theatre Company
- Melanie Beddie – freelance director and dramaturge
- Rosalba Clemente – freelance director and emerging writer
- Tom Gutteridge – artistic director Black Swan Theatre Company
- John McCallum – academic and theatre critic
- Nick Marchand – incoming artistic director, Griffin Theatre
- Julian Meyrick – associate director and literary advisor, Melbourne Theatre Company
- Suzie Miller – lawyer and playwright
- Irene Stevens – arts administrator.
PlayWriting Australia is supported by $330,000 in annual funding from the Australia Council for the Arts, with additional support from ArtsNSW. Performing Lines is initially managing the establishment of the new organisation.
PlayWriting Australia was created with cooperation between the Australian National Playwrights Centre and Playworks. Their resources have been pooled to create the new organisation.