Chief Executive Officer:  Chris Bendall

Creative Producer: Melanie Carolan

Finance Officer: K
ylie Richards

Production Supervisor:
Tim Burns


Keith Irving (Chair), Mark Thomas (Treasurer), Anne-Marie Heath,  Trish Gilligan, Rohan Astley, Tamara Press, Jane Kreis


Julian Louis, Katrina Douglas, Dino Dimitriadis (NSW),         Guy Boyce (WA)
Richard Watts, Daniel Clarke (VIC).     Chris Drummond (SA),     Jo Thomas,  Todd MacDonald (QLD)


Chris is an award-winning creative producer, director and dramaturg with experience working professionally all across Australia. He has worked on over 50 productions over the past 15 years, has been nominated for a Green Room Award for Outstanding Director, and won the WA Equity Awards for Best Director in both 2009 and 2011 and Best Production in 2011. He has been a member of the Theatre Nominating Panel for the Helpmann Awards since 2010, and is on the management committee of Theatre Network NSW.  

Previous positions include: Guest Programmer for PlayWriting Australia's National Play Festival (2013); Artistic Director of Deckchair Theatre in Fremantle (2008-2012); Artistic Director and co-founder of Theatre @ Risk in Melbourne (2001-2007), Artistic Director and co-founder of Footlight Theatre (Sydney, Melbourne, Adelaide) (1996-2000), and Affiliate Director of Melbourne Theatre Company (MTC) (2003-2004). As a director his most recent production was The Magic Hour, which toured nationally in 2014.

Chris has been awarded the Queen’s Trust Australia & Foundation for Young Australians Centenary Grant (2001) and the George Fairfax Memorial Award for Theatre (2003). He was the Australian delegate to the International Forum of Theatre Practitioners in Berlin (2004), and received an Ian Potter Fellowship and a Playwriting Australia / Goethe Institut Dramaturgy Fellowship to research new writing theatres in Europe and the UK (2008). During his time at Deckchair Theatre, the organisation was awarded the Outstanding Community Event Award from Fremantle Chamber of Commerce and an ABAF Award for Best Practice Recognition.

Recent directing credits include Thomas Murray & the Upside Down River (Griffin Independent / NORPA), Stones in his Pockets (Critical Stages). Previous directing highlights include for Deckchair Theatre: The Magic Hour by Vanessa Bates (finalist for APACA's Tour of the Year 2014); The Modern International Dead by Damien Millar (winner Best Production, Best Director WA Equity Awards); Grace adapted by Humphrey Bower from the novel by Robert Drewe (Perth International Arts Festival 2010); Checklist for an Armed Robber by Vanessa Bates (Winner Best Director, WA Equity Awards). Highlights with Theatre @ Risk include director/dramaturg of world premieres of: Requiem for the 20th Century by Tee O’Neill (nominated for an AWGIE for Best New Play); 7 Days 10 Years by Louis Milutinovic (winner Green Room Award Best New Play); and Polygraph by Robert Lepage (nominated Green Room Award for outstanding direction).

He has taught acting in NSW, VIC and WA for over fifteen years including at the Actors Centre Australia, Victorian College of the Arts, West Australian Academy of Performing Arts, Australian Theatre for Young People, Victorian Arts Centre, National Theatre Drama School, St Martins Youth Arts Centre and Centrestage School of the Performing Arts.

Chris was Chair of Stages WA from 2010-2013 as well as the WA State Representative of PlayWriting Australia from 2009-2013. He holds a Graduate Diploma in Theatre Directing (VCA), and a Bachelor of Theatre & Film Studies (UNSW). Chris has also worked for Melbourne Theatre Company, Playbox Theatre, Belvoir St Theatre, Sydney Theatre Company, Melbourne Festival, Full Dress Productions, Melbourne French Theatre, Victorian College of the Arts and WAAPA.


Melanie is a Sydney-based Producer, currently working as Associate Producer at Griffin Theatre Company. Recent projects managed for Griffin include Stephen Carleton’s The Turquoise Elephant, Angus Cerini’s Helpmann-award winning The Bleeding Tree, Justin Fleming’s The Literati (a co-production with Bell Shakespeare), and Alana Valentine’s Ladies Day. Mel has previously worked for Merrigong Theatre Company at the Illawarra Performing Arts Centre, and has produced independent work at the Old Fitz and PACT centre for emerging artists. She is a proud University of Wollongong graduate.

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