Sheila McHale

Sheila McHale

Minister for Disability Services; Tourism; Culture and the Arts; Consumer Protection

    Independent dance and theatre sectors set to break new ground

    26/05/2008 12:00 AM

    Western Australia’s best independent dance and theatre groups will be provided with professional management in a groundbreaking new partnership.


    Culture and Arts Minister Sheila McHale said the State Government and the Australia Council for the Arts had selected Sydney-based Performing Lines to provide a new management and production service based in WA.


    “This initiative will allow artists to focus on creating their best possible work with production support provided by a team with a significant track record,” Ms McHale said.


     “The project is the largest and most ambitious of its type in Australia and stems from extensive consultations with the theatre and dance sectors.”


    A $540,000 investment by the State Government, supplemented with a further $150,000 from the Australia Council for the Arts, has secured delivery of the new Management and Production Services project (MAPS) over three years. 


    Performing Lines will provide production, management, marketing, fundraising and touring services to the independent dance and theatre sectors, enabling the artists to concentrate on creating high quality work.


    “In securing Performing Lines, the pre-eminent agency of its kind in Australia, we are providing our WA artists with the best possible opportunity for their talents to be nurtured and ambitions met,” the Minister said.


    Ms McHale said two staff members would be based in Perth.


    “This partnership signals our intent to source world-class support for our artists and create a body of work that will be enjoyed for years to come,” she said.


    “This scheme will allow WA independent arts organisations and producers to create innovation-focused productions and this support will help these shows tour nationally and internationally, increasing access to audiences.”


    Australia Council for the Arts chief executive Kathy Keele said WA was the first State to roll-out such a program.


    "MAPS will provide a flexible support structure that frees artists from administration so that they can get on with doing what they do well:  creating work,” Ms Keele said.


    “Performing Lines has a great track record of creating opportunities for artists. It will be able to provide WA theatre and dance artists with both on-the-ground support and access to national and international networks.”


    Performing Lines director Wendy Blacklock said she was very pleased that her company had been chosen, and was excited about working with a range of theatre and dance artists in WA. 


    The investment by the State Government is additional to the recently announced $73million Ignite package.


    Performing Lines will begin appointment of a Perth-based team immediately.


    Minister's office - 9213 6900