AussieTheatre.com can confirm that 2017 WAAPA graduates Benjamin Almon Colley and Daisy Valerio will join the writing team as regular columnists in 2018.
The much loved “Coffee With…” column, which initially ran from 2007-2009 and featured new graduates of WAAPA writing about their first experiences in the Australian theatre industry, made a triumphant return in 2015 with Matilda Moran and Joel Granger. Since 2007, AussieTheatre.com readers have sat down for coffee with Lucy Maunder, Gemma-Ashley Kaplan, Kate Walder, Joel Granger, Matilda Moran, Matthew Manahan, Stephanie Wall and Jens Radda and this year, readers will have the chance to gain insight into the lives of TWO new WAAPA graduates.
Benjamin Almon Colley and Daisy Valero are so keen to begin their blog that they filmed this little “Real World Hello!” song to introduce themselves. Check them out, world!
Follow Benjamin and Daisy throughout 2018 as they navigate their way through the Australian arts industry as professional artists in Melbourne. New columns will be posted each week in a variety of mediums – photo galleries, text based pieces, listicles, interviews and more! (Anyone keen for another cheeky music video? We are!)
Benjamin Almon Colley
Raised in rural Victoria, Benjamin moved to Melbourne in 2011 to study at the VCA Secondary School. He continued his studies at Patrick Studios Australia under the tutelage of Andrew Hallsworth and graduated from WAAPA with a BA in Music Theatre in 2017. In addition to his commercial studies, he has an extensive background in classical music, including several years training on scholarship with Opera Scholars Australia. He currently works with their associate company, Australian Music Events as a guest writer and as resident choreographer. He is also presently integral in creating new performance opportunities for developing artists with the Royal Melbourne Hospital’s Dept. of Music Therapy. Benjamin is an avid composer and writer, with a passion for championing the advancement of the home grown performing arts industry in Australia across the fields of Music Theatre, Opera, Dance and Theatre.
Daisy Valerio was awarded the 2017 Finley Award for Music Theatre when she graduated from the Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts (WAAPA) in 2017 with her Bachelor of Music Theatre. In her time at WAAPA Daisy appeared in several productions including The Crucible as Mary Warren, Heathers:The Musical as Heather McNamara and 42nd Street as Ethel. In her first year at WAAPA Daisy also appeared in the Australian Premiere of A Man of No Importance as Irish Princess, Adele Rice, earning herself her first Finley Award nomination.
Prior to studying in Perth Daisy received her Diploma of Music Theatre at Brent Street while appearing in various productions including the title role in Rogers and Hammerstein’s Cinderella.
In her high school years Daisy performed nationally and internationally at venues such as the Sydney Opera House, Disneyland, Universal Studios and the LA International Music Festival.
In May 2017 Daisy directed, hosted and performed in a Princess Party, raising funds for the White Ribbon Organisation to help stop violence against women in Australia.
Most recently Daisy was cast in the WA Screen Academy’s short film, Knock Out as Tess Redman.