Dead Puppet Society Announce 2022 DPS Academy Artists

Visual theatre masterminds Dead Puppet Society have announced the 2022 participants of its highly-sought after artist training program and incubator for new design-led performance, the DPS Academy.

Presented in partnership with Brisbane Powerhouse with support from The Jelley Family Foundation, the DPS Academy provides artists with the opportunity to participate in a 14-part masterclass series exploring Dead Puppet Society’s unique creative methodologies, and the chance to create three brand new works, culminating in a public showcase evening, THE DPS LAB, at the Powerhouse Theatre in November.

In April, Brisbane-based artists from any disciplinary background with an interest in visual theatre forms, and an original performance concept ripe for creative development, were invited to apply to be a part of the 2022 DPS Academy. Three applications have been chosen: multi-disciplinary artist Grace Law, established independent theatre collective Yours Sincerely and newly created collective BLAT Productions.

Grace Law, a multi-disciplinary artist specialising in aerial theatre, contemporary circus and visual arts, has assembled a cross-disciplinary team of circus artists, poets and physical-theatre makers including Lauren Hale, Regan Ainslie and Claire Alcock, with support from director Celia White, to create a highly visual theatre piece that investigates and connects with humanity.

“The collaboration and guidance from Dead Puppet Society will be invaluable to bringing our concept to life. This is such a unique learning experience and I’m looking forward to every step of the process.” – Grace Law

BLAT Productions is a new collective made up of theatre maker Egan Sun Bin and multi-disciplinary creative producer Victoria Barns. Drawing inspiration from Goethe’s The Sorcerer’s Apprentice, they seek to make a powerful new work combining their love for visual art and theatre to create a magical experience for audiences.

“We are so excited to learn the Dead Puppet Society methodology. As practitioners who are deeply interested in the fusion of art and theatre, exploring the realm of visual theatre with the Dead Puppet Society is a dream come true.” – Victoria Barns of BLAT Productions.

Yours Sincerely (This Fantastic Planet 2019) is a collective of theatre makers making thought-provoking experimental work, made up of Madeleine Border, Luke Diamond and Honor Webster-Mannison. Their original concept aims to explore an individual’s relationship to their political landscape by using alienating portrayals of the body to talk about individual agency.

“We’re incredibly grateful to have been selected to participate in the DPS Academy. We look forward to learning first-hand how Dead Puppet Society puts together their fantastic work and how we might apply those principles to our own theatre making practice.” – Yours Sincerely.

DPS Academy artist-led sessions have kicked off at Brisbane Powerhouse on Tuesday 21 June 2022, and over several weeks will cover collaborative devising, storyboarding, puppet/object manipulation techniques, design conceptualisation and prototyping, the implementation of technical design elements, showcasing and pitching.

Academy artists will then undertake creative development and rehearsals of their own original performance concepts, under the mentorship of Dead Puppet Society. With the technical resources of the Powerhouse Theatre at their disposal, in November Academy artists will present a 20-minute demonstration of their original performance concept to an audience including the general public, industry guests and DPS Academy alumni.

The program is led by Dead Puppet Society’s Head of Youth and Engagement Helen Stephens and Associate Creative Director Matt Seery.

“As a company who benefitted from pathways and opportunities provided by senior artists and theatre organisations, now as an established Queensland-based company Dead Puppet Society is committed to giving back and engaging and inspiring the next generation of local visual-theatre makers.” – Matt Seery.

Through THE DPS LAB, Academy artists will present their works-in-progress, developed over the course of facilitated workshops and creative development, to audiences on 2 November at Brisbane Powerhouse. Tickets on sale soon.

For more details head to https://deadpuppetsociety.com.au/academy.

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