11 March 2016
The Australian Government today announced $1 million for the Bell Shakespeare capital campaign, laying the foundations for a secure future for Australia’s national Shakespeare theatre company.
Minister for the Arts Mitch Fifield said the Government is delighted to contribute to the campaign to secure a permanent home for the company.
“Bell Shakespeare’s new facility will be a fitting tribute to its Founding Artistic Director John Bell AO, who retired from his role with the company at the end of last year,” Minister Fifield said.
Mr Bell was very appreciative of the Government’s investment and said that for the past 26 years, Bell Shakespeare has performed for more than 2.5 million students, teachers and audience members throughout the country.
“I’m extremely grateful to the Australian Government for this extraordinary investment in Bell Shakespeare, which recognises our contribution to Australian cultural life. I am delighted the company, led by Peter Evans, will finally have security at its home at Pier 2/3 in Sydney,” Mr Bell said.
Peter Evans, Artistic Director of Bell Shakespeare said on behalf of the Board and staff that he is honoured by the Australian Government’s investment.
“These permanent premises will enable us to continue to create and tour high quality productions to regional and remote centres, deliver our learning and public access programs and increase our engagement with emerging and mid-career artists through residencies, skills training and resource sharing,” Mr Evans said.
Securing a permanent home for Bell Shakespeare will provide much needed space to expand their education and performance programs, including spaces for learning activities, a rehearsal and raw performance space, and office and workshop facilities.
Government partnerships with the philanthropic and corporate sectors are an increasingly successful model for supporting great art and cultural infrastructure. This funding will be used to leverage other private donations for the capital campaign.
Bell Shakespeare stages productions and provides education and learning programs for students, teachers and other members of the community across Australia.