Industry instrumental in successes Building an arts culture
TOWNSVILLE has long been known for its richness and diversity when it comes to the arts industry. With an outstanding array of local theatre, vocal and instrumental groups and ensembles, the arts industry is alive and strong; something that is unique for a regional centre.
Mulkadee artistic director Sandy Neal said the Mulkadee Arts Festival added to this pool of artistic development opportunities, offering an accessible and affordable program for young people with a passion for the arts.
“Although many of our colleges stage their own musical productions as part of their arts curriculum, Mulkadee takes this to a new level,” she said.
“Students come together from all parts of the diocese and learn to work in a new venue and with a new group of peers. This is a very valuable part of the Mulkadee process, teaching students the importance of performing and working as part of a team in an intense time period.
“For many students, even the opportunity to perform in a venue such as the Townsville Entertainment and Convention Centre is an experience in itself.
“Students come from rural and remote areas where arts programs are often few and far between and venues are com- paratively smaller. Performing in a venue such as the Entertainment Centre, even for students from Townsville, is a thrilling part of the Mulkadee experience.”
Over the years, many students who have participated in Mulkadee have gone on to develop careers in the entertainment and arts industry.
“Mulkadee adds richly to the arts development of young people in this region,” Ms Neal said.
“We have had many students from our Catholic schools who have gone on to enjoy a career in the arts both on and off the stage.’’
Former Ryan Catholic College student Sarah Murr was involved in Mulkadee during her school years and is this year performing in Les Miserables at QPAC in Brisbane.
Cameron Hooper, who also attended Ryan Catholic College and participated in Mulkadee, is now in production management at WAAPA, the Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts.
Brooke Arblaster, who graduated from St Anthony’s Catholic College, Deeragun, last year, participated in Mulkadee and now is completing a Bachelor of Performance at the University of Wollongong, receiving a Dean’s Scholarship.
Mulkadee student Alexandra McDonald is currently in Year 9 at St Margaret Mary’s College, this year featuring as Jane in the TCS production of Mary Poppins.
“Many of the arts teachers in Catholic schools are involved in theatrical, vocal, dance and instrumental groups and gain rich experience by being involved in local productions,’’ she said.
“They are also invited to participate in Mulkadee, assisting the workshop leaders as a professional development opportunity.
“If the Mulkadee experience can ignite a passion in some of our students to pursue a career and/ or a lifelong engagement in the arts, then we have achieved our objective.”
years, many students who have participated in Mulkadee have
gone on to develop careers in the entertainment and arts industry
DREAM CHASERS: From the prestigious NIDA are ( from left) Daniella Lacob, Sean Hall, Jack Ellis, Margie Breen and Julian Curtis.
NOTEWORTHY: Chloe Hasson, 16, of St Margaret Mary's.