Community Presenter Mentorship Announcement

Over the next 12 months, Regional Arts Victoria are pleased to announce we will support two Community Presenters in our 2019 Mentorship program through some very exciting changes.

Bruthen Arts & Events Council (BAEC) will be guided through a long term strategic plan, re-branding their events committee, creating a formal structure for this committee, and include a succession plan to work towards.

Tallarook Mechanics Institute will be guided by the Birregurra Community Hall Committee to ensure state of the art technical and theatre elements are included in their architect plans after their Mechanics Institute tragically burned down in May 2018.

Regional Arts Victoria’s Connecting Places program builds professional presenting skills to the Community Presenter network across the state, led by their specific and unique needs. The overall aim of the mentorships is to share knowledge and experience with this amazing network of volunteer-run arts organisations in regional Victoria.   

Read more about both mentorships below;

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Images by Judy Heil, Bruthen Town Hall

Bruthen Arts & Events Council
BAEC are a highly successful events committee that have run the Bruthen Blues Festival for 24 years. Their key aims are to;

  • Develop medium-long term strategic planning, and processes to guide the committee. 
  • Become more professional in marketing and audience development
  • Find new ways to partner with other arts organisations in our region, and partner with local business and community groups.
  • Find more ways to bring unique creative development opportunities to our local performers and artists
  • Build skills of the existing committee and work toward succession planning and resilience of the organisation to ensure that our sustainability is not reliant on individual members.

“For many years, Bruthen Arts & Events Council (BAEC) has presented its major festival each February, and three or four smaller community based events each year… Over the years we have presented touring shows where possible. Based on the community support received for these, we have been inspired to create an annual live performance program, to help us further develop our arts audience and provide professional development opportunities for our local performing artists. With the support of Regional Arts Victoria & Creative Victoria, we developed a program of touring shows for 2018 and 2019 and have launched the concept of “Bruthen Presents” as our new branding for down to earth community events and professional touring shows. Our aim is that “Bruthen Presents” is immediately identifiable with quality, accessible, unmissable events.” – Judy Heil

Mentor: Graham Coffey is a freelance Project Manager with a background in production and technical roles in theatre and events for the first part of his career. He has since worked on numerous creative projects and is currently in the finishing stages of Small Town Transformations. Working with 6 small Victorian towns of fewer than 2,000 people, Graham has helped each town through their journey of delivering significant, long-lasting creative projects. Whilst assisting with community consultation, strategic and budget planning, and succession planning for each town, he has built enduring and trusted relationships with many.

Mentorship Aims: The mentorship will work with the committee to develop a long term strategic plan, a method for re-branding their events committee to include an annual program of events, and look at a formal structure for this committee, including a succession plan to work towards. 

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Images: Tallarook Hall Committee in 2019 and Tallarook Mechanics Institute before and after the fire in May 2018.

Tallarook Mechanics Institute Inc
The Tallarook Mechanics Institute have been operating for decades successfully bringing quality touring shows to its stunning Mechanics Institute. Sadly, the hall completely burned down in May 2018, and the Committee are in the process of rebuilding their beloved hall. Their key aim is to rebuild a state of the art centre of culture for the region.

“We are planning to design and build our community hall to take it into the future, to be relevant and well utilised by the community and the region as a go to venue for high quality arts and culture. We want it to give the community a sense of pride about their asset to maintain it for future generations.” – Libby Webster

Mentor: Fiona Brandschied has been a local in Birregurra since 2009. Fiona spearheaded the Birregurra Mechanics Institute renovation and was the instigator for Birregurra’s successful Small Towns Transformation project. She led the Oversight team to plan, initiate and supervise; the community consultation process during the design stage, all technical requirements, acoustics of the space, staging & drapes, deciphering full community requirements for the space and incorporating live theatre performances into the overall design, disability access requirements, power/heating/cooling, commercial kitchen install, eventual financial sustainability of the facility.

Fiona has also established Common Thread Arts, which connects small towns and communities to great live art

Mentorship Aims: The mentorship will link the Tallarook Mechanics Institute committee with another committee who have recently undergone a hall rebuild to include quality performance as part of this process. It will guide all technical planning and ensure state of the art theatre elements are included in the re-build plans. It will consider the requirements for elements such as back of house, staging, adjustable seating, power requirements, acoustics, disability access (for patrons and performers), foyer area.