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Sally Richardson: Arts Leaders Program

Dec 10, 2018

Sally is a Western Australian based director, writer, dramaturg, arts consultant & producer working across the performing arts. She is passionately committed to the creation of new Australian work & developing collaborations with other artists in the region with a focus on contemporary theatre, dance & performance. 


What attracted you to the Leadership Program?

I am excited by the changes that I see in the wider arts and culture sectors in terms of gender parity and diversity, with broader representation and access to opportunity for a wider range of voices from across Australia and the region. The Arts Leaders Program provides me with an opportunity to learn how we can empower our various communities by advocating and supporting this continuing process of change.

What does leadership in the arts mean to you?

Right now leadership in the arts is about empowering our communities, exploring and finding inventive solutions, while activating, implementing and being a force for positive change. It’s about a spirit of generosity, and collaborating together to present a united front in terms of seeking wider community support for the arts as a whole.

Why do you think it is important to develop Arts Leaders?

I believe it is essential right now to promote diversity and inclusivity, advancing the empowerment of those who are marginalised, not only in the arts sector but in all aspects of our society. We also need to be supporting emerging and developing artists in the pursuit of creative excellence while growing the next generation of leadership. This alongside strengthening understanding, cultural appreciation and awareness of the value of arts and culture in our wider community.


Sally has been commissioned, created & directed for companies & organisations including: Sydney Theatre Company, Black Swan Theatre Company, Perth Theatre Company, Yirra Yaakin Theatre Company, Malthouse Theatre, Spare Parts Puppet Theatre, Deckchair Theatre, The Flying Fruitfly Circus, The National Institute of Circus Arts, WAAPA, Performing Lines, Sydney, Perth & Melbourne Festivals amongst others. Productions of her work have been presented nationally & internationally & been a winner/finalist for Helpmann Awards, Green Room & Blue Room Awards, Ausdance Awards amongst others. She is a former director of Playworks Australia & Stages WA.

Sally is a past recipient of an Australia Council Dramaturgy fellowship, a Creative Fellowship (WA Department of Culture & the Arts) & was a member of the Theatre Board (Australia Council) 2001-5. She has been a peer assessor/advisor/mentor in various capacities & is currently a board director of CAN WA. She has developed, produced & toured over 30 original works through her production company Steamworks Arts, is Artistic Director of MAXIMA Circus & Development Manager at Mandurah Performing Arts Centre. She is committed to collaborating with both emerging & established artists & companies, while actively championing the voice, presence & creativity of women in the performing arts.

Learn more about the Arts Leaders Program.