2017 Adelaide Fringe Artist Fund Grant Recipients Announced

Published: Tue, Oct 4 2016
Posted in General, Media Releases
2017 Adelaide Fringe Artist Fund Grant Recipients Announced

Nine independent Australian artists will receive funding from Adelaide Fringe’s Artist Fund in order to present work at next year’s festival.

The artists from Adelaide, Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane have been selected to share in $40,000 from the fund, which is designed to help artists cover some of the costs of presenting a show in the Fringe.

The Adelaide Fringe Artist Fund was launched in 2014 and top up funds were raised this year through customer donations and matched funding from the Creative Partnerships Plus 1 funding program.

Adelaide Fringe Director and CEO Heather Croall said 108 applications were received and the judges were overwhelmed by the high calibre this year.

“We received so many impressive submissions; the nine successful artists were chosen because they displayed an intention to present work that was contemporary, daring and diverse,” Ms Croall said.

“I think these shows will surprise and wow audiences and we’re thrilled that through generous donations from the community, we’re investing in the long-term careers of these talented Australian artists in a very tough arts funding landscape.”

Previous grantees of the Adelaide Fringe Artist Fund have subsequently been propelled on to national and international stages. This includes Brisbane-based Black Honey Company, which received funding to debut its burlesque show Hot Brown Honey at the 2015 Adelaide Fringe. The show has since won several awards and toured around Australia and to Edinburgh Fringe.

The latest Artist Fund recipients represent a cross-section of genres, including theatre, dance, visual art and cabaret. The nine artists and their respective shows are:

  • Emily Steel – 19 Weeks (Theatre - SA)
  • Rebecca Mayo – Stories In The Dark (Theatre - SA)
  • Anya Anastasia – Rogue Romantic (Cabaret - SA)
  • Dan Daw – On One Condition (Dance - former SA)
  • Adriano Cappelletta – This Boy’s In Love (Cabaret - NSW)
  • Melita Rowston – Shit Tourism presents The Giant Worm Show! (Theatre - NSW)
  • Aaron Bradbrook – The Working Class (Visual Art - VIC)
  • Adam Seymour and Rural Ranga – Pussy Play Masterclass (Event - VIC)
  • Elements Collective – M.I.N.D.E.D (Dance - QLD)

Emily Steel, who wrote the play 19 Weeks, said she and director Daisy Brown were delighted and grateful to receive funding from Adelaide Fringe’s Artist Fund.

“It means a lot to us as local artists, particularly in the current funding climate. It makes it possible for us to take risks and respond quickly to real stories,” Ms Steel said.

2017 Adelaide Fringe Artist Fund Grant Recipients

Aaron Bradbrook - The Working Class (Melbourne)
The Working Class is a photographic exhibition by award-winning documentary photographer Aaron Bradbrook. Featuring large format photographs dispersed throughout the entirety of the Royal Croquet Club in an outdoor site-specific installation, the series focuses on the moment the artist exits the stage after performing. Sweaty and dirty, the artist emerges seeping with exhaustion and emotion. The Working Class emphasises the extreme, yet often euphoric realities of what it means to be an artist working at the Adelaide Fringe. Controversially titled, this raw and evocative new series examines the role of the artist as entrepreneur and key facilitator of a small to medium sized business, often as sole trader, working within the greater economy. The title references the blue-collar workers of the industrial revolution who used their skilled physical labour as a means to generate income. 

Adam Seymour - Rural Ranga - Pussy Play Masterclass (Melbourne)
From the creators of Wank Bank and starring Burlesque legend Strawberry Siren, Pussy Play Masterclass brings you an informative, interactive and playful masterclass of original techniques to perfect the art of playing with your partner’s pussy or even your own.

Strawberry Siren will take audiences through all the ins and outs of the vagina, with her artistic and humourous flair. Did someone say date night?

Adriano Cappelletta - This Boy’s In Love (Sydney)
This Boy’s in Love is a one-man gay rom-com cabaret comedy about the hopes and fears of falling in love. Performed by NIDA and Gaulier-trained Adriano Cappelletta (who brought the wonderful CubbyHouse to Adelaide Fringe in 2010), the work tackles the rarely explored perspective of a gay man in love. With musical direction and live piano by Nicholas Tipping, choreography by Julia Cotton (Australian Dance Theatre, Company B Belvoir) and direction by Johann Walraven (Sydney Theatre Company) – This Boy’s in Love is storytelling at its most intimate, blending mime, stand up, dance, clowning, improvisation, drama and comedy confessional. “This is ambitious theatre on a small scale”, says Adriano, “and I hope that audiences will be transformed by the challenging of stereotypes and the sheer honesty and unadulterated joy of the piece.”

Anya Anastasia - Rogue Romantic (South Australian)
Rogue Romantic is the brand new show from Adelaide cabaret artist Anya Anastasia (Torte e Mort: Songs of Cake and Death, WINNER Best Cabaret Adelaide Fringe Weekly Awards). The show explores two sides of one woman: the Diva and the Writer and their contradicting attitudes to love. It will feature mad serenades from the Diva alongside moments of poignant confessional from the Writer – who is not as instantly likeable but who is infinitely more relatable. Directed by Clare Bartholomew (Die Roten Punkte), with musical direction from Lucian McGuiness (Scotch and Soda, Company 2) along with percussionist/co-performer Bec Matthews (Yana Alana, Circus Oz), Rogue Romantic will incorporate elements of clowning, physical theatre and circus, as well as sharp and funny lyrics in order to create an atmosphere akin to a hosted mad and wonderful speakeasy.

Dan Daw  - On One Condition (South Australian)
Growing up in rural South Australia, Dan Daw (Restless Dance Theatre, Australian Dance Theatre and Force Majeure) first set foot on stage age 12. Knowing no limitations, he then went on to forge an international career in London. Now 33, Dan takes time to reflect on the rollercoaster ride that has led him here. At the intersection of queerness and disability, On One Condition blurs the edges between dance and theatre, questions the idea of ‘normal’ and offers an intimate, whirlwind journey through home, belonging, comfort, need and struggle.

Elements Collective - M.I.N.D.E.D (Brisbane)
M.I.N.D.E.D is a cutting edge hip-hop dance theatre piece presented by Elements Collective: one of very few companies in Australia collaborating contemporary settings with professional b-boys/b-girls (breakdancers) and hip hop dancers. Using their expertise in world class break-dancing and contemporary theatrics, this show will push the boundaries of hip-hop theatre with pristine acrobatics, visual choreography and intense body awareness.

The show features and is directed by multi-national champion b-girl Leah Tilney, three-times award winning dancers Ben Garcia, Travers Ross & Brad Harrison, musician Ben Ely of Regurgitator – who will compose a completely original soundtrack, and dramaturg Emma Serjeant of ESP (EmmaSerjeantPerformance).

Emily Steele - 19 Weeks (Adelaide)
19 Weeks is a play about an abortion. Crafted by an all-female, all-South Australian team with writer Emily Steel (Rocket Town, Rabbits), performer Astrid Pill (Tartuffe, Me & My Shadow, Cake) and director Daisy Brown (Mützenball, Ruby Bruise) – this one-woman show is an extraordinary example of innovation, daring and risk in the theatre.

What makes 19 Weeks different is that it is Emily Steel’s own story. She had a termination at 19 Weeks after the baby was diagnosed with Down Syndrome, and when she talked honestly about her experience people told her their stories in return. This was the inspiration for 19 Weeks - to open up the conversation around the hush-hush subjects of abortion and pregnancy loss. 

Accompanied by a live cellist, the story will be heard from the poolside at the Adina: watching the woman in the pool, on an inflatable, swimming and sinking. A playground of metaphors as she glides, treads water, struggles and surrenders - she bails water out of a sinking boat, she drowns in her own tears, she learns to swim.

19 Weeks will be a familiar story but one that is so rarely told in full, with vulnerability and fierceness and humour.

“Telling this story so truthfully is scary for us, but it’s necessary, to make a piece of theatre that lets members of our audience know that they are not alone.” – Emily Steel.

Melita Rowston's Shit Tourism presents The Giant Worm Show! (Sydney)
The world’s largest earthworm calls Australia home! It inspired a giant worm festival, celebrity Worm Kings and the biggest worm puppet in the world. Now Melita Rowston’s determined to find it. The Giant Worm Show! is her latest Shit Tourism Talk (following festival hit 6 Degrees of Ned Kelly). Part TED talk, part comedic monologue, it celebrates Australia’s obsession with big things – mangy puppets included!

Rebecca Mayo – Stories In The Dark (Adelaide)
Stories In The Dark is an opportunity for adults to re-experience having stories told to them in the dark. Part radio play, part theatrical storytelling, this intimate theatrical work brings together director Tim Overton (recently seen as a performer in The 39 Steps), actors Elizabeth Hay (Red Cross Letters), Rebecca Mayo (Deluge) and Nathan O'Keefe (Things I Know To Be True) and composer/musician Rachel Bruerville.