Michael Gow, Artistic Director of Queensland Theatre Company, will be leaving the Company to pursue freelance writing and directing.
In his 11th year as Artistic Director of Queensland Theatre Company, Michael has advised the Board that he has declined a further contract following the expiry of his current contract, due in August 2010.
““Being the Artistic Director of Queensland Theatre Company for eleven years has been incredible. There have been wonderful experiences creating works, touring shows, developing young artists and giving artists acknowledged nationally opportunities to work with the Company,” Gow said.
“The Queensland Theatre Company Board offered me a new contract to continue as Artistic Director. I was honoured and excited by the offer but also had to think very hard about a growing need to get back to myself as a writer. I love running this Company but it takes a huge amount of energy and time. After an intense period of reflection I’ve decided I have to put this energy back into my writing and have very sadly declined the offer of another term as Artistic Director.”
Chair of Queensland Theatre Company, Dr Kate Foy said that Michael made a significant contribution to the Company.
“The Board is naturally disappointed that Michael will not be continuing, but understands the reason behind the decision to concentrate on his career as one of Australia’s leading playwrights. It endorses this with its warmest wishes for his continuing success,” Foy said.
“The Board has been delighted with Michael’s performance during the past ten years; he’s been an incredibly fine leader, and a hard-working and visionary Artistic Director. Michael has launched many Company initiatives including the Emerging Artists and Queensland Regional Partnerships programs, as well as the unique and highly sought after Queensland Premier’s Drama Award.
“Michael’s programming boldness is evident in shows such as Edward Albee’s The Goat, Anatomy Titus Fall of Rome: A Shakespeare Commentary and new works such as Dirt alongside his own productions of classics like The Crucible, Richard III, and The Venetian Twins. Michael’s own masterpiece Away undertook a triumphant national, 20th anniversary tour in 2006 establishing the Company in a regular national touring circuit.
“The Company’s writing development and education programs are not always as visible to the general public as its mainstage work, but the success of these significant developmental initiatives under Michael Gow, as well as his other achievements, has meant that his tenure as Artistic Director will undoubtedly be seen as one of enduring importance in the development and maturation of Queensland’s theatre.
It is anticipated that Michael Gow will program the major part of the 2011 season and continue his relationship with the Company as a freelance artist.
Queensland Theatre Company will be looking to appoint a new Artistic Director by the middle of the year. It will be an open recruitment process, and is anticipated to take up to six months.