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Young Voices

Our future leaders are a vital voice in our sector, and Perth Festival wants to make sure we hear them. Our Young Voices cohort are ten exciting artists & arts workers nominated by arts organisations across Perth, accessing performances and behind-the-scenes conversations and helping shape their state Festival. 

Read on to meet our 2023–2024 cohort.

Annabelle Gallon

Midland Junction Arts Centre

I am a boorloo based artist, currently completing a Bachelor of Creative Arts at Curtin University. I engage in multidisciplinary work as a visual artist. I am passionate about working and volunteering in my local community. As an artist, I look to illuminate moments of intimacy in the everyday.

Ayo Busari

Curtin University 

I am a Nigerian award-winning Creative Director, Visual Artist, Writer, Community Curator, Musician & Performer who is the founder and lead creative of TAB Family. Previously living and working in Nigeria and the UK, I am now blessed to be based in Boorloo (Perth). I am also a graduate of Journalism & Media (BA Hons) from the University of Hertfordshire (England) & Screen Arts (MArts) from Curtin University. I am constantly learning and evolving as an artist and arts curator.

As a creative artist, alongside my alter-ego, 'Yoruba Daddy', I am about capturing moments and memories through words, images and sounds. Whether it be photography, filmmaking, music-making, theatre, designing, live performances or writing. I am an all-around multidisciplinary creative, expressing myself through these different art forms and genres.

Conway Chunnary

Black Swan State Theatre Company

I am from Kununurra and Miriwoong is my community language, along with Nyikina Nunggubuyu and Kriol.

I proudly come from a long line of dancers, visual, textile and traditional artists whose stories come from the Red Hill, looking down to the fresh water, dreaming of the mermaid.

I enjoy being a Black Swan Theatre Youth Ambassador and aspire to travel and work around the world experiencing different cultures and art.

So far, I have danced in Marrugeku’s video This is Australia, performed with Yirra Yaakin’s Ngalaka Daa Ensemble, WA Youth Theatre Company and I am a member of Boss Arts Collective. Next year I look forward to studying Aboriginal Performance at the West Australian Academy of Performing Arts.

Emmett Aster

Riptide Youth Theatre Company 

I am a Mandurah based creative who has been working freelance in various art positions since I was a teenager, including music, photography, poetry, and theatre. Now, I am particularly passionate about the way in which these artistic practices can be fused in order to create multi-modal theatre that incorporates all of these practices. I have performed, sound-designed, produced, and written for theatre, and am currently the artistic director of ‘perhaps, a theatre company.’, an emerging theatre company in Mandurah that seeks to blur the lines that separates theatre from other art forms to tell human stories, especially the stories of those who exist on the margins. I also recently received the Next Level Grant to develop my artistic practice in this area! 

Faith Clowry

Yirra Yaakin Theatre Company 

I am a proud Darumbal Murri woman, originally from Cronulla, NSW, and I have lived in Perth since I was five years old. I completed the Certificate IV in Aboriginal Performance in 2021 and the Diploma of Acting in 2022 at the West Australian Academy of Performing Arts (WAAPA). Since finishing my time at WAAPA, I made my professional debut in the production of Lingo Lah-Lah at Yirra Yaakin Theatre Company and have also been a part of Yirra Yarns at Yirra Yaakin.

Jesse Vakatini

WA Youth Theatre Company

My name is Jesse Vakatini and I had my professional acting debut in MEDEA (2019) at Black Swan State Theatre. Since then I have worked closely with the West Australian Youth Theatre Company in Fringe Festival's Body Rights (2020) and Perth Festival's BESIDE (2021). I am currently acting as Secretary for WAYTCo's Youth Advisory Committee and in the workshop process for Perth Festival's Body of Knowledge (2022). I have just completed Year 12 ATAR where Drama was my main focus. I have acted in numerous plays throughout the completion of school. 

Julie Ziegenhardt

Propel Youth Arts

Hello, I’m Jules. I like to question the in-betweenness of things, where they collide and how they mix. Intersections of analogue and digital spaces resonate significantly in my work. I explore these convergences playfully, combining my practice of visual art with researchers, composers, musicians, and programmers from other disciplines. I’ve been lucky to navigate my research between exhibitions in Perth, schools in the Pilbara, and theatres in The Hague, as an ever-evolving form of performances, interactive installations, virtual experiences and workshops. The multidisciplinary nature of this work exposes me to the ever-expanding possibilities of contemporary art and its capacity to create spaces that are diverse, inclusive, affirmative and fun.

Mia Freeman

Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts 

I am an Arts Management student at WAAPA studying all aspects of arts management, including communications, marketing, law, finance, and project management and production. I am drawn towards all areas of art, most specifically resonating with film, live performance and visual art, and am eager to expand my knowledge in all fields. I want to help make an impact on the Perth community through captivating and thought-provoking ideas presented within artworks. 

Syarisa Yasin

Centre for Stories

I am a Boorloo-based student (emphasis on the student) filmmaker and writer. I am passionate about bringing diverse and inclusive stories to life inspired by her Indonesian and Pakistani heritage. I aim to create work that speaks to women and femmes to capture the complexity of their lives, identities, and dreams. My all-time favorite things to do include dancing, singing, and watching endless amounts of South Asian films from Bollywood to far beyond.

Thomas Allan

UWA Conservatorium of Music 

I am currently in my fourth year of study at the UWA Conservatorium of Music, under the tutelage of Lisa Harper-Brown and Dr. Andrew Foote. Alongside my music studies I am also completing a third major in German Language. A passionate solo and choral singer, I have had the opportunity to perform with UWA ensembles Con-Cantorum and Symphonic Chorus, Schola Aedis Christi at Christ Church Claremont, Irwin Street Collective, OpusWA, and St George’s College Consort and Chapel Choir. I was also a recipient of a the Wesley Uniting Church scholarship in 2023. In 2022 I also travelled to Melbourne as a member of the National Youth Choir of Australia (NYCA). Passionate about engaging younger generations with classical music, I am on the Opera Orientation Committee at West Australian Opera and am also grateful to continue as a member of the Young Voices Program for 2024.