Artists for 2017

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Jeff Usher
Saturday 14 October, 4.15pm – 5.00pm
Foyer @ Queensland Theatre


Jeff Usher has been at the forefront of jazz and blues in Queensland and Australia since the early 1980s as a pianist, composer and music educator. He has been a tutor at Queensland Conservatorium Griffith University since 1998, achieving a Master’s Degree in 2006, and will complete a PHD in composition from University of Queensland in 2017.

Jeff has several albums to his credit including his 2015 release, Bird Wings, recorded live in concert at Brisbane Jazz Club with his ten-piece group, A Love Supreme Super Band. Besides his own compositions, Jeff’s performances include tunes from early Jazz, Boogie-woogie, Swing, Bebop, Bossa Nova and other forms of popular music. Jeff will play and tell the stories behind some of the works which he composed as part of his current research.

Tickets: Festival pass
To purchase tickets, please click here.


JUTE Theatre Company
Friday 13 October, 8.00pm – 9.30pm
Billie Brown Studio @ Queensland Theatre

Brisbane premiere Here we all are. Assembled by Kathryn Ash  is a JUTE Theatre Company production that features lead actor Doug Robins who was the 2014 Access Arts Achievement Award recipient. Joined by cast Natalie Taylor and Barbara Lowing who perform a twisted tale of two hapless characters who dare to question. Suspended in a rotting dystopian landscape, forgotten by the world, these two are comforted by blissful ignorance, turning a blind eye to the impending Armageddon. Rising from the detritus comes the voracious, clever and manipulative ‘worm’ set to divide the slavish trust of our heroic duo.

This witty, insightful and poignant play will seduce you into a collapsing world where you will bear witness to the final showdown between truth and delusion… to be or not to be?

Tickets: Festival Pass
To purchase tickets, please click here.


Steve Sparrow
Saturday 14 October, 12.00pm – 1.00pm
Foyer @ Queensland Theatre


Singer, guitarist, songwriter Steve Sparrow will take you through the history of Country Blues and Rock’n’Roll music. He will also impart a lot of interesting information about these musicians and talk about many of the people behind these artists. Learn and listen to the music of household legends such as Eric Clapton, Jimi Hendrix, Willie Nelson, Chet Atkins, Buddy Holly, Johnny Cash, John Fogerty and Elvis Presley.

Keen to learn the tricks of the trade? Steve will demonstrate some of their varied guitar and vocal styles and perform many of the songs that are synonymous with this style of music.

You might even find yourself singing along at times!

Tickets: Festival pass
To purchase tickets, please click here.


Donna Dyson and Friends
Saturday 14 October, 8.30pm – 10.00pm
Billie Brown Studio @ Queensland Theatre


Professional songwriters often compose for so many projects: artists, choral groups and celebrations that the general public rarely glimpse inside their catalogue other than hear a selection of their work performed.

Donna Dyson is the current APRA-ASA Australian songwriter of the year and her vaulted catalogue is being opened. You will be treated to the remarkable voices of soloists, choirs, collaborators, co-writers and friends who soar the heartfelt lyrics to your heart through their gifted voices in song.

This is only a tiny taste of her vast body of work which has been composed and created over the past four years.  Prior to this, Donna Dyson spent her days as a professional educator, leader, university lecturer and published author.  It wasn’t until a brain tumor and stroke suddenly took her sight that she gained her fulltime creative vision and composed an expansive music catalogue some would not complete in a lifetime.

Enjoy the stories behind the songs and the beauty of the music sung by remarkable voices including special guests: Tyrone Noonan, David Willersdorf, Damien Leith, Hillbrook Chorale, Vox, Queensland Show Choir, Brisbane City Sounds, Wil Hughes, Kat Bryant, Fran Morris, Tony Dee, Bek Hull, Sophie Bannister and surprise international guest appearances handpicked for this special one night only performance.

Tickets $35/$30
To purchase, please click here.


Ged Maybury
Saturday 14 October, 1.15pm – 2.45pm
Greenroom @ Queensland Theatre


Ged Maybury is a storyteller, performance-poet, actor and author. He is best known for his 15 comedy and science fiction books for children. He has written and performed in shows for children and adults, tutored drama and creative writing and looked really good as a nude model (a long, long time ago!).

Undercover Artist Festival 2015 favourite Ged Maybury is back and self-describes himself as frequently horizontal and a teller of stories, but are they true? From Steamed Up Punk to punctuated surrealism, Ged will decipher a journey of autistic moments from childhood, mostly about getting in trouble. As part of Stories So True, join Ged for a 1 hour workshop featuring the likes of poetry, storytelling and creative writing.

When he grows up, he wants to make movies.

Tickets: Workshop pass (Limited spaces)
To purchase tickets, please click here.


Access Arts’ Unofficial Welcome
Friday 13 October, 5.30pm – 7.00pm
Foyer, Courtyard and Greenroom

Blind Date features Janelly Melba (Janelle Colquhoun), accompanied by differently sighted pianist Blind Freddie (Donald Hall) performing re-worked classical hits and originals while uncovering the handicaps of going on a blind date when you’re blind yourself. Blind Date is a humorous, un-PC cabaret for the audience to laugh with Janelle about the absurdity of blind clichés and her everyday blind issues.

Up next, is our newly arrived tree loving, royal blue-blooded Petunia the Mud Princess who is free at last from the sedate, protocol-bound world of the palace. But who are these people watching her and what gardening delights will she discover? Produced by Marissa Ker (Lorikeet Players), directed by Peter Kraat. Petunia the Mud Princess is a comedy character on the border of fantasy and reality. She is genuine royalty but she would rather be gardening than listening to another military band.

The Mad Hatters’ Dinner Party is full of fantasy, part tragicomedy, part sophistication.

Have you got that special hat that’s just been waiting for the right opportunity to be worn?  Limited tickets only for the unofficial welcoming event at Undercover Artist Festival 2017.

Tickets: Festival pass (excluding dinner)

$20 with dinner (Limited spaces for catering purposes)
To purchase tickets, please click here.


Back to Back Theatre
Saturday 14 October
Workshop 1: 2.10pm – 3.40pm
Workshop 2. 4.00pm – 5.30pm
Diane Cilento Studio @ Queensland Theatre


Dedicated to randomness, uncertainty and a love of errors in the creation of new theatre, UNMASTERCLASS is a theatre workshop that prioritises being over knowledge and skill, elevates doing over thinking.

After nearly 30 years of creating highly innovative and auspicious performance works, Back to Back Theatre has learnt that mastery is the need to learn how not to know what one is doing and how to go on doing it. Join us in a playful and thought-provoking journey where too much definition in the rehearsal room leaves too much out and the objective for theatre makers is learning not to be the master of your own house.

UNMASTERCLASS is an experience and experiment in relational transformations, a reminder that doing something properly is not always a way of doing it differently.

Participants will be given the opportunity to enhance their practice by working with Back to Back Theatre’s Artistic Associate Tamara Searle from one of Australia’s most globally recognised and respected theatre companies.

Book in early as places are limited for the two UNMASTERCLASS workshops.

Tickets: $50 per each workshop (Limited spaces)
To purchase tickets, please click here.



Access Arts 2017 Achievement Award
Friday 13 October, 7.00pm – 8.00pm
Billie Brown Studio @ Queensland Theatre

The Access Arts Achievement Award provides up to $10,000 funding for Queensland artists, artsworkers and producers with disability working in any artform to create, develop, present, produce, exhibit and/or tour their work. Join us for the culmination of the last four years of Access Arts Achievement Award recipients Including:

Our 2014 Award-winner, Doug believes that theatre skills should be mandatory because they are useful in all facets of life. He is an aspiring writer and playwright and in the last 18 months has co-founded a local writers group called ‘YAAWIN’ culminating recently in the publication of an Ebook Anthology. Doug performs Here we all are. Assembled by Kathryn Ash produced by JUTE Theatre.

2015 recipient Emma Le Strange performs Colour To My World a visual and vocal journey of the development of her children’s book, Tea Parties and Pillows. A kaleidoscope of imagery, Emma’s art aims to find refreshed provocation in the anatomical familiar often through abstract realism.

2016 recipient, Elephant Whisperer Alex Procopis is joined by best friend Jo Surawski, mentors and percussionists Velvet Pesu and Tichawona Mashawa for music that evokes pure joy. Elephant whispering is a rare and unique artform. Alex’s vocal timbre emulates sounds by these beautiful animals. Alex is currently producing his first album working with Taronga Zoo elephants.

We are proud to announce this year’s 2017 award recipient. Please join us in celebrating the achievements of these artists.

Tickets: Festival pass
To purchase tickets, please click here.


Kari Sullivan
Saturday 14 October, 10.00am – 12.00pm
Greenroom @ Queensland Theatre


What’s in an artist statement? A cognitive approach to writing effective artist statements.

What is your artist statement really saying? In this workshop, Dr Kari Sullivan shows how academic research on artist statements can help artists control the effects of their statements on potential audiences. For example, Dr Sullivan’s studies suggest that artists who describe their work as a personal “journey” may lead audiences to expect the work to be more esoteric. On the other hand, audiences may be disappointed if they cannot immediately understand artworks that are claimed to ‘send a message’.

Word choices such as these have particular effects on an audience because the words tend to make audiences think in particular ways as shown in cognitive approaches to language.

Participants will apply these principles either to the improvement or the design of their own artist statements.

Tickets: Workshop pass (Limited spaces)
To purchase tickets, please click here.


Scott Wings
Saturday 14 October, 2.45pm – 4.15pm
Billie Brown Studio @ Queensland Theatre


Whiplash is a one-man performance that uses words and physicality to interpret meanings around “Hope”.

Through storytelling, poetry, mime and physical theatre, Scott questions what real hope is in a world where even hope has been commodified and branded for sale, for election, for attention.

This is a small part of Melbourne-based artist Scott Wings’ The Hope Project – a multidisciplinary arts project questioning hope in order to find real hope. The Hope Project workshop – collects stories around hope, trying to figure out what hope is, the realities of despair and what we truly hope for.

In the process of creating The Hope Project, Scott Wings will interview, question and critique what people think of hope.

Let’s take steps to catalogue and maintain hopeful thought.

Tickets: Workshop pass

To purchase tickets, please click here.