John Sheedy comes from five years as Artistic Director of Barking Gecko Theatre Company (Perth). During this time he restored Australia Council Funding and transformed Barking Gecko into a company of national significance. Highlights include the Helpmann award-winning co-production with Opera Australia and recent Melbourne Festival production The Rabbits starring Kate Miller-Heidke.

John has also worked as a director with some of Australia’s most respected theatre companies, including Belvoir Street, Sydney Theatre Company and Bell Shakespeare. John has directed at both National Institute for Dramatic Arts and the Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts. Internationally, he has worked with the likes of Edward Albee in New York and Cicely Berry at the National Theatre London.

Maryanne Lynch, Theatre Works Chairperson said: “The Board of Theatre Works is delighted to announce the appointment of multi award-winning Director John Sheedy as our new CEO. John comes from five years as Artistic Director of Barking Gecko Theatre Company. During this time he restored Australia Council Funding and turned the fate of the company around to one of national significance.

“John brings with him a wealth of experience in creating dynamic and enduring relationships between audiences, artists, companies and festivals. He has relationships that span the local, the national and the international—and has demonstrated his leadership skills across these spheres. Having worked as both a director and an actor, John has an understanding of the creative process and how to combine this with organisational and business acumen. The Board looks forward to this next chapter of creative growth and the exciting opportunities for artists and audiences arising from this.”

John Sheedy said of his appointment: “I am incredibly excited to be joining the team at Theatre Works as the new CEO and Creative Producer. Theatre Works is an iconic institution with a 35-year history, an innovative organisation, passionately committed to risk-taking creative forces and a space for cultural dialogue.

“There is no doubt that in the last few years Theatre Works has significantly increased its audiences, profile and support for independent theatre artists thanks to the commitment and passion of Dan Clarke. It is an inspiring legacy to build on and I look forward to leading the organisation into its next exciting phase of developing and showcasing the exceptional work of Melbourne’s independent artists whilst investing in the advancement of their careers on a national and international scale.”

Outgoing CEO and Creative Producer Daniel Clarke takes up the position of Programmer, Performing Arts at Arts Centre Melbourne on 16 March.

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