Putting the Nation on Stage

Celebrating the women we’re working with in 2017

March 8, 2017

National Theatre of Parramatta is working with another fantastic line-up of women this year. To celebrate International Women’s Day we’re introducing you to the women behind our 2017 productions.

LEE LEWIS
Director, Smurf In Wanderland
Lee is the Artistic Director and CEO of Griffin Theatre Company. She is one of country’s leading directors, having directed various productions for Griffin, Bell Shakespeare, Sydney Theatre Company, ATYP, and over twenty independent productions. She holds an MFA from Columbia University and an MFA from NIDA. Currency House published her book Cross-Racial Casting: Changing the Face of Australian Theatre as part of their Platform Paper series. Lee is directing Smurf In Wanderland by David Williams as a co-production between National Theatre of Parramatta and Griffin Theatre Company this April at Riverside Theatres.

KATE WORSLEY
Dramaturg, Smurf In Wanderland
An actor, theatre-maker, voice-over and teaching artist, Kate was the first participant of our Creative Futures program on our first production Swallow. She is currently working with David Williams as the dramaturg for Smurf In Wanderland. She is a founding ensemble member of Clockfire Theatre Company. She has performed in numerous theatre productions and award-winning short films. Kate has directed education and youth theatre projects and also works as a teaching-artist for Sydney Theatre Company, Bell Shakespeare Company and The Joan Sutherland Centre and specialises in teaching English language learners.

FELICITY CASTAGNA
Author, The Indredible Here and Now
Felicity is a local author and educator. In January 2017 she was presented with the Arts and Cultural Award at the 2017 City of Parramatta’s Australia Day Local Awards. Felicity was recognised for her significant contribution to the Parramatta cultural sector through her work as a writer and educator of literature. She is now working on the stage adaptation of her award-winning novel The Incredible Here and Now which will be presented by National Theatre of Parramatta in July.

JENEFFA SOLDATIC
Director, The Indredible Here and Now
Jeneffa is an actor, acting coach and director. In 2004 she became the third Australian ever to receive life membership to the Actors Studio. Since then she has acted in various international productions, appeared on Curb Your Enthusiasm, The Tonight Show with Jay Leno and Fuse TV. Her film credits include Saturn Returns, How Much, A Small Story, Sickie and Room with View. She sang with The Polyphonic Spree, touring across America supporting David Bowie. She has run acting workshops in New York City, London and Bangkok. In Sydney, Jeneffa has worked with NIDA and Actors Centre Australia as an Acting teacher and director. She directed and co-developed the hit show Careful What You Wish For for the 2013 Edingburgh Fringe Festival, and is directing National Theatre of Parramatta’s stage adaptation of The Incredible Here and Now with Wayne Harrison.

HILARY BELL
Playwright, The Red Tree Stage Adaptation
Hilary is a graduate of NIDA, AFTRS, and the Juilliard Playwrights’ Studio. She writes in many different areas including stage, fiction, radio, screen, and theatre. She joint won the Aurealis Award for best young-adult novel with her novel, Mirror, Mirror. She has won multiple awards for her work as a playwright. Hilary is writing the stage adaptation of Shaun Tan’s award-winning picture book The Red Tree which National Theatre of Parramatta will be premiering in October.

DONNA ABELA
Playwright, Mentor From Page To Stage program
Donna is an award-winning playwright. She has written over 30 original and adapted stage plays for youth, community, independent and mainstream theatre companies, and radio plays for the ABC and Eastside Radio. She has been commissioned to adapt stories in the public domain, develop original narratives, devise works with young or professional performers, create works based on community consultation, and to collaborate with multi-writer teams. Donna co-founded Powerhouse Youth Theatre in Western Sydney. She is currently leading our From Page To Stage playwriting mentorship program.

CONCEY BOSCO
Mentee, Creative Futures program
Our third participant of the Creative Futures program in 2016, Concey worked on the production of Who Speaks For Me co-directed by William Yang and Annette Shun Wah as Assistant to the Production and Stage Manager Gordy Rymer. She returns to the program in 2017 on the production of Smurf In Wanderland. Read about her leanings from 2016 here.