Access and Inclusion Advisory Committee

Meet the committee!

The Committee provides advice and guidance on all aspects of the Festival including our Disability Action and Inclusion Plan, built environments, access services available across our programs and community building. Committee members are paid for their time and meet at four key stages across the year.

The committee is comprised of members with a range of access requirements, disability and/ or lived experience, and includes patrons, artists and service organisation representatives.

Passionate Deaf advocate, NDIS project coordinator, and Access Consultant, with a lifetime of experience in self-advocacy, inter-community and intercultural collaboration. Laura has experience spanning from mental health support and education, disability inclusion and awareness, to creating and facilitating community spaces and engagement for marginalised groups. Laura's varied experience and especially powerful lived experience, gives them the tools to create meaningful projects and opportunities both online and off for deaf & disabled. Outside of work, they are either gigging with their deaf band, or cooking up new creative art and video collaborations within the deaf community, to show off our beautiful Auslan and deaf culture.

 

Consultant – arts, diversity, access and inclusion. An accomplished leader, consultant and facilitator with 15 years’ experience in government, the arts, not-for-profit and university sectors, Morwenna has worn the hats of CEO, senior leadership team member, project manager, lecturer, researcher, trainer and advisor. She is currently working as a consultant specialising in strategy, diversity, access and inclusion in relation to the arts, and is a member of advisory committees with the City of Sydney, Sydney Festival and Perth Festival. She recently completed a Churchill Fellowship, exploring inclusive music programs, venues and festivals which actively engage disabled people across the USA, UK and Ireland. Her work is influenced by her own lived experience as a musician with disability.

Simone Flavelle is Screenwest's Diversity and Inclusion Manager, developing WA screen industry knowledge and practice around diversity and supporting practitioners identifying as diverse to be included in industry. Simone was previously a Founding Member and Digital Producer at DADAA (Disability in the Arts, Disadvantage in the Arts Australia), designing and implementing arts and cultural projects, workshops and digital mentoring programs with over 90 Western Australians identifying primarily as disability diverse. Led by artists with disability, Simone has supported performers, visual/digital/sound artists and film makers to create works for screen, exhibition, theatre, specific sites and online. She is a parent to two young men living with disability.

Raf Gonzalez is a Latino multi-disciplinary artist; born and raised in Perth, he comes from a family of migrants who moved from El Salvador to Australia during the Salvadoran Civil War. Raf is a proud Aspie whose work highlights often-marginalized diverse identities, raising them from supporting character to protagonist, and giving them the agency they often aren’t afforded. Raf has been supported by DADAA and the Centre for Stories with his writing.

Julia Hales is a performing artist dedicated to sharing the experiences of people living with disabilities, including her own experience. Julia has a 20-year history with DADAA, through which she made the short film Finding Love in 2017. The project led her to collaborate with Perth Festival, and in 2018 she presented the world-premiere of You Know We Belong Together, commissioned by Perth Festival in a co-production with DADAA and Black Swan. The show returned to Black Swan in 2019, and Julia is currently undertaking a mentorship with Artistic Director Clare Watson. Julia regularly volunteers with children with Down syndrome, and speaks at state and national events.

Melanie works two days a week in Media and Corporate Communications for the Department of Fire and Emergency Services and was the Secretary of Women With Disabilities WA Inc - a non-profit incorporated organisation that is run by women with disabilities for women with disabilities. She graduated from Murdoch University with a double major in Japanese and Communication Studies in 2000 and has since worked as a Japanese interpreter. Melanie is also a User Analyst for Web Key IT, testing websites and documents for compatibility with her assistive technology. She loves socialising with friends and family and attending concerts and events and is thrilled to be involved with the Perth Festival.

Mary-Ellen King has held leadership positions at the Melbourne International Arts Festival, the Victorian Arts Centre, the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, Opera Australia and the Perth Concert Hall and more recently in the aged care sector.  She has an MBA from Melbourne University, a Bachelor of Arts from the University of WA and is a graduate of the AICD.  She has been a Director of Perth Festival, the Melbourne International Comedy Festival, Orchestra Victoria, Red Stitch Theatre Company, Footscray Community Arts Centre, and was a member of the Australia Day Council (Victoria).   Mary-Ellen has served on the Board of the Australia Council for the Arts, and on the Major Performing Arts Board and is currently Chair of Lost and Found Opera and a Director of Juniper Aged Care.

Grace King is an assistive technology assessor with the National Disability Insurance Agency. In 2009, Grace came to Perth from Madison, Wisconsin, to volunteer at the Cisco Academy for the Vision-Impaired, teaching people who are blind or have low vision to build and maintain computers along with customer service skills. Before this, Grace was working in IT for NASA. Grace is also an award-winning mezzo-soprano and performed alongside Little Birdy gold record-awarded musician Fergus Deasy in Playtime with Grace and Fergus: The Musical, at the Fringe World Festival 2019.

Katherine Wilkinson is an arts manager, producer and curator, with an interest in socially-engaged, collaborative and site-responsive practices. She currently hold the positions of Program Director for the Fremantle Biennale; Special Projects Coordinator at Fremantle Arts Centre; and is the current Curator for the DADAA Fremantle Gallery.

Previously she has worked at the Perth Festival as the Creative Producer for Five Short Blasts (2019), and at International Art Space, as the co-creator and Curator of the Know They Neighbour program (2015-19). Katherine work, lives and swims on Whadjuk Nyoongar Boodjar.

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