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2016 Sidney Myer Performing Arts Awards Winners Announced

April 4th, 2017

The winners for the 2016 Sidney Myer Performing Arts Awards are:

Gavin Webber, Co-Artistic Director, The Farm, (Qld), Individual Award, $60,000
Australian Theatre for Young People, (NSW), Group Award, $90,000, and
Kathy Burns, Artistic Director, Barkly Regional Arts, (NT), Facilitator’s Prize, $25,000.

They were announced by Carrillo Gantner AO, Chair of the Sidney Myer Fund and presenter Yaron Lifschitz (Artistic Director, Circa) at Cranlana, Melbourne on Tuesday 4 April 2017.

Gavin Webber is co-Artistic Director of THE FARM with Grayson Millwood.  They create physical performances that show the fragility and strength of the human condition.  THE FARM has toured internationally and nationally to critical acclaim.  Webber spent the majority of his early performance career with Meryl Tankard ADT and Belgi​​an company Ultima Vez.

Australian Theatre for Young People (ATYP) exists to connect with young people to help find their voice and together, inspire all Australians. ATYP believe that an involvement in theatre builds better people – theatre develops confidence, creativity and community. It challenges our community to reflect on and better understand ourselves and the society of which we are a part.

ATYP work with all levels of the arts industry, from the most celebrated national companies to the smallest youth theatres. ATYP supports young people from their first theatre experience to their first professional production.

Kathy Burns is Artistic Director, Barkly Regional Arts (BRA).  Since 2011 she has been working in very remote Indigenous communities implementing arts programs ranging from music, film, visual arts, dance and theatre for all ages. As the Artistic Director, Kathy creates all program projects across the multi-arts organisation, ensuring quality engagement and innovative opportunities for the community and service organisations to be involved.

‘I am delighted to recognise the valuable contribution each of these worthy winners has made to the arts in Australia.  Without a doubt, it is the tireless work of these artists, perusing their vision that helps build community and a share sense of purpose.  I congratulate each, says Carrillo Gantner AO, Chair, Sidney Myer Fund.

The Trustees of the Sidney Myer Foundation believe that real achievement should be recognised and rewarded. Now in its 33rd year, it has awarded over $3.5 million.

The national Awards are determined by a Judging Committee chaired by Carrillo Gantner AO (Chair, Sidney Myer Fund) and this year they included: Iain Grandage, Louise Herron AM, Lindy Hume, Andrew Ross and Noel Staunton.

The Judging Committee recognises past achievements but also gives consideration to the potential of an individual or group to continue their contribution to Australian society through the performing arts.

The Sidney Myer Performing Arts Awards were established in 1984 by the Trustees of the Sidney Myer Fund, to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the death of Sidney Myer, a passionate advocate and great friend to the arts.

Biographical information along with the judging committee citations on each of the winners follows this release.

The 2016 Sidney Myer Performing Arts Awards were announced on Tuesday 4 April 2017. 

Media information:   Magda Petkoff, Purple Media, 0409 436 473, [email protected]


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