Meet The Team Behind YES
A new work by THE RABBLE
THE RABBLE is a group of visionary women who have consistently produced bold, provocative and visually stunning theatrical experiences. The company has forged an unrivalled reputation for producing experimental theatre (Unwoman, Lone, Joan, Story of O) of the highest quality – theatre that interrogates the human condition through a combination of surreal and visceral aesthetics, and a feminist sensibility.
Let us to introduce you to the team behind their exciting new work, YES.
Co-Creator, Co-Director, Lighting & Sound Design
Emma Valente is a freelance director, dramaturg, lighting designer and occasional trouble maker. She is the Co Artistic director and Co CEO of feminist theatre company THE RABBLE. Emma is the recipient of the Creators Fund grant from Creative Victoria and she is a Sidney Myer Fellow Curator at Large (performance) at The SUBSTATION. Emma has directed works for THE RABBLE that have been performed for Dublin Fringe Festival, Arts House, St Martins, Wuzhen Festival, Melbourne International Arts Festival, Dark MOFO, Brisbane Festival, Malthouse Theatre, Belvoir, MTC, The Substation, Theatre Works, CarriageWorks and La Mama. Emma wrote an essay on Dramaturgy and Silence for the centre for Dramaturgy and Curation. Emma is also an award-winning Lighting Design and has worked for many major theatre companies across the country. Emma also founded an initiative to increase gender equity in the technical design sector (lighting, sound and video design) and has been an advocate for change around Sexual Harassment and Bullying in the sector.
Co-Creator, Co-Director, Set & Costume Design
Kate Davis is a Melbourne based director, set and costume designer, visual artist and florist. She is the Co Artistic director and Co CEO of feminist theatre company THE RABBLE. THE RABBLE has forged an unrivalled reputation for producing experimental theatre of the highest quality – theatre that interrogates the human condition through a combination of surreal and visceral aesthetics, a feminist sensibility, and the application of intellectually rigorous research. The results have changed the paradigm of what is possible in theatrical culture in Australia. Kate is also an award-winning Set and Costume designer and has worked for many companies across the country. She co founded THE RABBLE internship program and also facilitates workshops on Design and Dramaturgy and Performance creation through THE RABBLE workshop program.
Dana Miltins trained as an actor at The Centre for the Performing Arts (Adelaide), and the Stella Adler Studio of Acting (New York). She’s a passionate associate of THE RABBLE performing in almost every production in the company’s history. Highlights have included: Unwoman (Substation, 2019), Joan (Theatreworks, 2017; Vitalstatistix, 2018), Cain and Abel (Substation, 2016; Belvoir, 2014), and Orlando (Dark Mofo, 2015; Brisbane Festival, 2014; Melbourne Festival, 2012). A film lover and maker too, Dana’s most recent project Objects of my Disaffection – which she performed in and coproduced – premiered at MIFF in 2020 and won ‘Best Film’ and ‘Best Onscreen Talent’ at Reel Good Film Festival 2021. Other Film and TV credits include: Fires (ABC), Neighbours (Channel 10), and short films Mother (David Rusanow, 2018), and Creswick (Natalie Erika James, 2016). Dana’s currently completing a Masters of Screenwriting at the VCA.
Mary Helen Sassman
Mary Helen Sassman is an actor, devisor, singer and is a founding ensemble member of THE RABBLE. Mary Helen has extensive experience in devising and performing high impact, physical, feminist works and is well known for her expertise in improvisation and co creation. For THE RABBLE Mary Helen has created and performed in many works including: UNWOMAN (The SUBSTATION), JOAN (Wuhan Festival, China | Vitalstatistix), Abel in CAIN AND ABEL (Substation, Belvoir), Victor Frankenstein in FRANKENSTEIN (Malthouse Theatre), O in STORY OF O (MTC Neon), Queen Elizabeth I and Sasha in ORLANDO (Dark Mofo, Brisbane Festival, Malthouse Helium/Melbourne Festival), Lord Henry in ROOM OF REGRET (Melbourne Festival, Theatre Works), Angustius in CAGELING (Downstairs 45 | Carriageworks) and Salome in SALOME (Carriageworks). Mary Helen is excited to stay on at Arts House after the season of YES as she is due to join the Daniel Schlusser Ensemble with their latest production Hercules.
Cassandra Fumi is a theatre maker and stage manager. Recent SM credits include; Easy Riders (Rising – APHIDS), UNWOMAN (THE RABBLE), Anthem (Performing Lines), We All Know What’s Happening (Cambeltown Arts, Vitalstatistix (show director), Zurich Theater Spectacle, Noorderzon Performing Arts Festival Groningen), 33 Variations (The Comedy Theatre), BROKEN (fortyfivedownstairs), LONE (THE RABBLE – Arts House), Book of Exodus P2 (Fraught Outfit), Angels in America Part 1 & 2 (fortyfivedownstairs). Directing credits include; THE MERMAID (La Mama Theatre), DOG SHOW (Melbourne Fringe Hub – Winner Best Emerging Theatre Ensemble), The Places You’ll Go (Adelaide Fringe – Winner Best Theatre). Cassandra is also the Associate Artist on Body of Knowledge & Body of Knowledge at Home with Samara Hersch 2020-2022, Production manager/mentor on the Let’s Take Over Program since 2019 and runs a drama program at Parkville Youth Justice Centre.
Kate Cameron began her career in London’s West End, working on large scale shows such as Harry Potter, Les Mis and Legally Blonde, and moved to Australia five years ago to live out her childhood dream of being a cowboy. Since then, she’s worked at theatres and festivals across the country, as well as working as a freelance photographer and portrait artist. She thinks working with THE RABBLE is even better than being a cowboy.
Emma Lockhart-Wilson is a creative artist based in lighting and spatial design for performance. She works collaboratively with performance makers to create visually and spatially cohesive work and enjoys developing unique lighting elements for use within set, costume and props. Emma has a strong interest in work that engages with performer bodies and designed elements as interactive, particularly when framed by a queer and feminist lens. Emma has designed lighting for companies including Australian Theatre for Young People, Monkey Baa, Applespiel, PACT Centre for Emerging Artists, DeQunicy Co. and Version 1.0 and in 2019 completed a design internship with THE RABBLE. Emma is currently undertaking a Master of Fine Arts at the VCA, University of Melbourne, researching design practices in the field of queer/feminist performance in Australia.
Eva Seymour is an actor and writer, passionate about both theatre and film-making. Upon completion of her training in 2015 at 16th St Actors Studio, she was selected as the Graduate Ensemble Member for Red Stitch Actors Theatre. In 2017 she furthered her studies when she was selected by the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art (RADA) in London for their Full Time Acting Shakespeare program. Concurrent to training, Eva has performed in many theatre shows around Australia, including Uncle Vanya dir. Nadia Tass, desert 6.29pm dir. Bridget Balodis (Red Stitch), Moral Panic dir. Bridget Balodis, (Double Water Sign), Puffs – Original Australian cast – dir. Kristen McCarthy Parker (TEG Live), Anthem dir. Susie Dee (Performing Lines, Melbourne, Sydney and Perth Festivals), and Archimedes’ War – dir. Susie Dee (Darebin Speakeasy), television shows including My Life is Murder (CJZ) and How to Stay Married (Princess Pictures), and feature films such as West of Sunshine dir. Jason Raftopoulos, and So Long dir. Caitlin Farrugia and Michael Jones. As a writer, Eva shot her first short film, Superstars co-directed with Caitlin Farrugia, in 2018, which premiered at Peninsula Film Festival in 2019.
Natasha Phillips is currently a Producer with Performing Lines with a strong independent Creative Producing practice working across multiple forms of contemporary, experimental performance. Natasha was recently mentored by Erin Milne (Bureau of Works) as part of the Victorian Independent Producers Initiative Mentorship Program. Natasha has a growing engagement with the Chinese speaking region which is driven by her desire to strengthen cultural literacy within artistic practices and creative exchanges. Her previous roles include Associate Producer in Programming at Arts Centre Melbourne (2018-2021), Program Support Officer at ArtPlay (2018), Associate Producer at Arts House (2017-2018) where she produced the Festival of Live Art and freelance producer with The Substation (2016). Since returning to Australia from the U.K. in 2015, she has been selected to participate on programs such as the Australia Council for the Arts’ Future Leaders Program (2017), Emerging Cultural Leaders Program at Footscray Community Arts Centre (2015), the inaugural Women In Theatre Program at Melbourne Theatre Company (2016) and the Melbourne Fringe Producer Mentorship Program (2015).
Performing Lines produces provocative contemporary performance by Australia’s most audacious independent artists. They curate a portfolio of work that is propelled by pressing questions and new ways of seeing the world. Performing Lines champions the unconventional, the marginal, the rebellious and the new. Their purpose is to champion risk and to ensure that the breadth and plurality of Australia’s creative potential is represented and celebrated. Performing Lines is led by Executive Producer Marion Potts, and manages teams in Sydney, Perth and Hobart, with a network of producers and presenters around the country and the world.
YES – THE RABBLE
Wed 30 Mar – Sun 10 Apr, 2022
Auslan Interpreted performance: Thu 7 Apr, 7.30pm
Audio Described performance: Fri 8 Apr, 7.30pm
GA $20 / BLAKTIX $10
Images courtesy of the artist.