The 2022 Joan & Betty Rayner ACTF Fellowship

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Junkyard Beats Victoria have been announced as recipients of the 2022 Fellowship.

The Trustees of the Australian Children’s Theatre Foundation and Regional Arts Victoria are thrilled to announce the recipients of the ACTF 2022 Joan and Betty Rayner Fellowship, Junkyard Beats Victoria.

Junkyard Beats create and present live performances for young people which includes music, dance, physical theatre, circus, humour and imagination. The Fellowship will support Junkyard Beats artists to further develop their practice in the field of theatre for children, with activities such as mentorships and training in acting, physical theatre and clowning.

“After a very competitive round of applications, the enthusiasm and excitement the Junkyard Beats team have generated will make for very satisfying professional developments over the next twelve months to the benefit of Victorian children,” said Chair of the ACTF, Rod Parnall. 

Senior Manager of Regional Arts Victoria’s Arts & Education program, Pippin Davies, said the Fellowship represented a wonderful opportunity to further support artists following a challenging couple of years.

“The Junkyard Beats team create uplifting theatre experiences with important environmental messaging, and their Fellowship activities will enable them to extend on and compliment their skills, supporting the creation of more inspiring future work in the field of theatre for young people,” she said.

For the Junkyard Beats team, the Fellowship represents an exciting opportunity to train with some of the most talented professionals in theatre, music, environmental education, dance and circus arts.

“We are excited to deepen & refine our relationships to these art forms, allowing us to create an impactful, thought provoking and meaningful theatre experience for young audiences. With the support of the Fellowship we are grateful to be able to spread the Junkyard Beats message of recycling & pollution that we are so passionate about!” 


About the Fellowship

Building on ACTF’s history as strong supporters of theatre for primary school age children across Victoria, the Joan and Betty Rayner ACTF Fellowship supports the artistic development of an artists’ practice to the amount of $20,000 and is open to emerging or established artists working in children’s theatre and to those wishing to diversify their practice into and across the field of theatre for young audiences.

This biennial Fellowship continues the legacy of the Rayner sisters, who believed that high quality theatre should be accessible to young people, despite location, cultural or socio-economic differences.

The Rayner sisters established the Australian Childrens Theatre in 1948 after decades performing throughout Britain, Europe and the United States as strolling players.  Through their Theatre, Joan and Betty trained many emerging local performance artists, provided support for established childrens’ theatre performers and brought to Australia many highly talented international children’s theatre artists.

Joan & Betty themselves spent their early years developing their stage craft under the tutelage of renowned overseas performers and by travelling extensively to meet with local storytellers to observe the folk stories and customs of many cultures worldwide.  This in turn inspired them to train others through the Australian Children’s Theatre.

It is in this spirit that the Foundation initiated this Fellowship.

The Foundation partners with Regional Arts Victoria to bring theatre and live performance opportunities to disadvantaged communities through a subsidy program which offers up to 75% subsidy off the cost of performances. In 2019 the ACTF supported 5,847 audience members to experience live theatre and performance through the subsidy program.


Application Process

Applications for the 2022 Fellowship have now closed.

Applications for the 2024 Fellowship will open in the second half of 2023. Sign up to our ENews to be notified when applications open.


The Australian Children’s Theatre Foundation is proudly supported by:

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