Bell Shakespeare announced Brisbane based Iranian artist Nasim Khosravi as the final recipient of its 2018 philanthropy-funded creative placements.
Khosravi has been named Assistant Director for Bell Shakespeare’s upcoming production ofJulius Caesar, touring to 28 regional and metropolitan venues throughout Australia from July 2018.
This is the third such placement within Bell Shakespeare to be supported by Intersticia Foundation in 2018, providing the opportunity for creative professionals to be embedded within the Company to help foster artistic capacity in the wider industry.
Julius Caesar Director and Bell Shakespeare’s Associate Director, James Evans, said he was excited to have Nasim on board as Assistant Director, citing her feminist perspective and interest in exploring links between contemporary theatre and classic texts as central to her appointment.
“Nasim has a history of creating radical work that challenges political orthodoxy and I’m certain she will bring that iconoclastic perspective to our show. She will be a key creative voice in the room, contributing to all aspects of the production in rehearsal, ” he said.
Khosravi founded her own Brisbane-based company, Baran, and recently finished an observership with Queensland Theatre onThe 39 Steps. In 2008, her pieceNo Swinging Allowedwas banned in Tehran after its first performance.
Khosravi ’s appointment follows on from Penny Harpham’s placement as Assistant Director on Bell Shakespeare’s first production of 2018,Antony and Cleopatra, supported by both Intersticia and the Robert Salzer Foundation.
Penny is the co-founder and co-Artistic Director of She Said Theatre and has worked across Australia, South Korea, Germany and the UK as a director and performer.
Intersticia Foundation also supports Bell Shakespeare’s Writers Fellowship—a two-year residency given to a mid-career Australian playwright. Fellowship recipients benefit from the practical resources and specialised skillsets of the artistic leaders and network within the organisation. The 2018 Writers Fellow is actor, writer, TV presenter, voiceover artist and theatre director Kylie Bracknell, from the Nyungar nation in the south west of Western Australia.
Previous recipients include Kate Mulvany (2016) and Jada Albert (2017).
Bell Shakespeare’s Artistic Director Peter Evans said that nurturing creativity in this way has been a longstanding mission of the organisation.
“Our hope is that each recipient benefits from having access to our creative and administrative team, and we encourage them to thoroughly explore any area that will assist their future development. But in truth, it is Bell Shakespeare and the wider community who benefit from having these great minds be given the space and resources to create new ways to challenge and provoke us through their art.
"It’s so important that our creatives are able to focus wholly on their artistic work and are paid fairly to do so. This wouldn’t be possible without the philanthropic support we have received from Intersticia over the past five years.
Intersticia Board Member, Sam Crock, said of the partnership between Intersticia and Bell Shakespeare, “We were interested in finding partners who dared to be bold and adventurous ....those who wanted a transformational relationship which enabled both to grow and learn.
And we know that finding the right partner to have robust and meaningful conversations with can sometimes be very tricky.”
“From day one we found such a partner in Bell Shakespeare. Our work together has allowed Intersticia to support our passion of developing leaders by leveraging the timeless learnings of Shakespeare through its incisive focus on human nature. Their work with us has enabled a number of prominent young writers and educators to be nurtured within the Bell environment and contribute to Bell’s creative offering.
“What we realised after the first couple of years was that our role is to support Bell’s own leadership team of Peter Evans and Gill Perkins through having the “brave conversations” that are so crucial in producing the significant works they do.
“Bell keeps challenging themselves by attracting people with divergent thinking, which flows onto us through the people they introduce us to.
Our partnership has therefore been based on co-creation.
Instead of reacting to needs based situations Intersticia has enabled Bell to attract outstanding people who complement their values and help to take their vision to the next level. Similarly, they have given us the same gift,” she said.