7 Sep 2018

The Ensemble Theatre Sandra Bates Director’s Awards is an incredible opportunity which encourages and nurtures emerging theatre directors by giving them the chance to work as an Assistant Director on two of Ensemble Theatre’s mainstream productions each year. Check out what the recipients have been up to since winning this amazing award.

2018 Winners

Liz Arday

Liz worked as the assistant director on the hilarious new Australian comedy UNQUALIFIED, which premiered at Ensemble earlier in the year. As part of Boatshed Development, Liz directed KILLING KATIE: CONFESSIONS OF A BOOK CLUB, a fresh look into the intricacies, depths and competitiveness of female friendships She is currently working alongside Artistic Director Mark Kilmurry on THE NORMAN CONQUESTS, a comedic three play extravaganza written by Alan Ayckbourn.

Felicity Nicol

Felicity graduated from the NIDA post graduate director’s course in 2012 and holds a Bachelor of Arts in Theatre and Performance Studies, and a Bachelor or Art History and Theory from UNSW.  She is currently Artistic Director of Spark Youth Theatre. Felicity has been completing a 6 month residency with Canadian company Mammalian Diving Reflex, and has been creating work with them at various European Festivals in Austria, Germany, Denmark and Sweden.

2017 Winners

Shaun Rennie

Shaun worked as assistant director on NEVILLE’S ISLAND and LIP SERVICE at Ensemble Theatre and will be returning in 2019 to direct Tennessee Williams’ BABY DOLL. Most recently, Shaun has directed THE VIEW UPSTAIRS (Sugary Rum Productions), ONLY HEAVEN KNOWS (Luckiest Productions), RENT (Highway Run Productions) for which he won the 2016 Broadway World Award for Best Director of a Musical, and YOU’RE A GOOD MAN, CHARLIE BROWN for which he was nominated for Best Director of a Musical at the 2016 Sydney Theatre Awards.

Francesca Savige

Francesca directed WOLF LULLABY as part of Boatshed Development and worked as assistant director on BUYER AND CELLAR and TAKING STEPS. She has directed and assistant directed a multitude of shows, including SUCH SWEET SORROW for Bell Shakespeare’s Actors at Work; ONE FLEW OVER THE CUCKOO’S NEST, OTHELLO (Sport For Jove); CYMBELINE (Queensland University of Technology) and co-wrote and directed Sport For Jove’s youth theatre program THE SECOND AGE PROJECT (2013, 2014 & 2016) as part of their summer outdoor season.

2016 Winners

Priscilla Jackman

Priscilla worked on GOOD PEOPLE and BAREFOOT IN THE PARK as assistant director and directed THE IMPORTANCE OF BEING EARNEST as part of Boatshed Development at Ensemble Theatre. Since, she has been awarded the Berlin New Music Opera Award, from The Opera Foundation for Young Australians, travelled to Berlin for the Komische Opera under Barrie Kosky and was the Resident Director of Sport for Jove’s winter season (2017). Priscilla is currently a lecturer at the National Institute of Dramatic Art and will return to Ensemble Theatre in 2019 to direct the new Australian comedy THE APPLETON LADIES’ POTATO RACE.

Janine Watson

Janine directed a rehearsed reading of AWAY as part of Boatshed Development and worked as assistant director on TRIBES and RELATIVELY SPEAKING at Ensemble Theatre. Janine returned to Ensemble to direct the hugely successful UNQUALIFIED. Janine has been a a part of Bell’s ACTORS AT WORK program and has directed abridged versions of ROMEO AND JULIET, A MIDSUMMER NIGHT’S DREAM, HAMLET and MACBETH. She has also directed CRIMES OF THE HEART (2017), DOLORES (2015 co-directed with Kate Box) and INFINITY TASTER (2015) at The Old Fitz.