Deputy Premier welcomes young regional artists to NSW Parliament

L-R Back row: Connor Coman-Sargent, Bethany Thornber, Jacob Raupach, Matt Ortiz, Deputy Premier and Minister for the Arts, James Farley, Nathan Wood, Amos Wilksch, Tullara Connors L-R Front row: Claire Leske, Ashley Hansell, Heidi Maree Francis.

L-R Back row: Connor Coman-Sargent, Bethany Thornber, Jacob Raupach, Matt Ortiz, Deputy Premier and Minister for the Arts, James Farley, Nathan Wood, Amos Wilksch, Tullara Connors
L-R Front row: Claire Leske, Ashley Hansell, Heidi Maree Francis.

On Wednesday 21 October, Deputy Premier and Minister for the Arts Troy Grant met 11 young regional NSW- based artists who have been awarded $10,000 scholarships under a major new Government scheme to develop emerging artistic talent.

The Scholarships, covering dance, music, visual arts, theatre, literature and screen production, are a great way to help young regional artists aged between 18 and 25 develop their careers and connect with arts organisations and training opportunities.

“It was fantastic to learn first-hand how these talented young artists are benefiting from this exciting new program to help foster the next generation of regional arts and cultural professionals,” Mr Grant said.

“The NSW Liberals & Nationals is investing in the next generation of talent to grow their skills and expand their knowledge to take back to regional communities,” Mr Grant said.

Mr Grant was joined by prominent members of the arts community at NSW Parliament as part of a two-day professional development workshop for the young artists.

The workshop hosted by Arts NSW enabled scholarship recipients to meet key people in the arts sector and visit arts venues and organisations including Carriageworks in Eveleigh, Information and Cultural Exchange in Parramatta and attend a performance at Belvoir St Theatre.

The workshop focused on supporting the young recipients in the initial stages of their Scholarship and help build their professional networks. It included introductions to key arts industry people  who may act as mentors and contacts.

Supporting artists in regional NSW is a key priority of the Government’s Create in NSW 10-year policy framework that guides strategy, investment and partnerships to grow a thriving, globally connected arts and cultural sector.

We’re excited to see how these talented young artists and cultural workers will benefit from this new program which helps foster the next generation of regional arts professionals.

The 11 scholarship recipients who attended the Arts NSW workshop are:

  • Amos Wilksch of Culcairn: a six-to-eight week residency at Sydney’s Belvoir St Theatre for the rehearsal and bump-in of a 2016 production, and dramaturgical support for a new work.
  • Matt Ortiz of Albury: a 12-month program that includes workshops, a mentorship and song writing and recording to create an EP album.
  •  Bethany Thornber of Corowa: Aboriginal arts and culture mentorship with artist Threhna Hamm. The mentorship will cover traditional Aboriginal art making and contemporary art practice.
  •  Nathan Wood of Byron Bay: screen project A Timelapse Journey Through the NSW Wilderness. The project will involve time lapse photography and video of NSW national parks and wilderness areas.
  • Heidi Maree Francis of Dubbo: a project to record an original full-length album in the indie/pop genre. The album will be recorded at a local studio with all music written and played by Ms Francis and her band.
  • Connor Coman-Sargent of Dubbo: design and digital arts project Second Sojourn: Extending the Journey. The project will include travel to Berlin and Barcelona to attend workshops by internationally renowned photographers.
  • Tullara Connors of Grafton: professional music development mentorships including working with some of Ireland’s best Tenor Banjo players.
  • Ashley Hansell of Dundee: a professional design development program to expand a fashion label and create workshops. The project will help develop a handmade fashion business in Glen Innes and provide workshops on making recycled wearable art.
  •  Claire Leske of Wagga Wagga: a dance project to develop and teach a cerebral approach to movement. The project will involve workshops, a mentorship and skill development with regional NSW dancers.
  • Jacob Raupach of Wagga Wagga: a series of professional development and research trips in Australia and Europe to meet with artists, publishers, galleries and attend of the world’s largest photobook festivals. The visits will lead to the production of an artist’s monograph.
  • James Farley of Wagga Wagga: an arts residency at Broken Hill Art Exchange to create works on Broken Hill’s environmental regeneration using experimental photography

This is the first year that the YRAS category has been offered to support young artists and arts and cultural workers from regional NSW between 18-25 years old to undertake a self-directed professional development program or project in any artform. It is proposed another round of YRAS will be offered in late 2015 to allocate the remaining funds.

Please click here for further details and updates on grant closing dates. 

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Published: 22 October 2015