The Next Level Regional Grants are part of the McGowan Government’s Regional Arts and Culture Investment Program (RACIP), which invests in regional Western Australia to support liveable and vibrant communities. Next Level Regional Grants are presented by Healthway Drug Aware with an additional grant made possible with support from KingKira Group this year.
The successful recipients of the Next Level Regional Grants include multidisciplinary theatre maker Emily Burton (19), circus director Georgia Deguara (26), country folk singer-songwriter Savanah Solomon (25), illustrator Mio Angela Gadon (25), filmmaker Abby Garratt (22), rapper Jacob Gregory (22), textile artist and educator Leah Vlatko (26), and emerging curator Joo Tan (24).
Each recipient will embark on 12 months of professional creative development, building their skills and experience to further develop an arts career in regional WA.
- Emily Burton (Mandurah) will receive mentorship from storytelling theatre company, Whiskey & Boots. Emily will develop and present a performance of their own contemporary theatre show under the mentorship, which will be based on stories collected from the public;
- Georgia Deguara (Broome) will collaborate with Perth web and digital design agency Start Digital to learn how to better showcase her current work online. Georgia hopes to upskill her online knowledge to benefit future projects, become a better arts worker and to increase her scope as an artist;
- Savanah Solomon (Woodbridge) will record, release and promote an EP of her original songs. The release will be launched with a free community event in the Wheatbelt;
- Mio Angela Gadon (Exmouth) will develop a solo exhibition of her illustrations, exploring the theme of a quarter-life crisis from her perspective of being a migrant from the Philippines;
- Abby Garratt (Manjimup) will write, direct and produce her second short film titled ‘Paradise Valley’, a feminist western set in the late 19th century and filmed on location at heritage buildings around her hometown of Manjimup;
- Jacob Gregory (Broome) will work with Scott Griffiths of Perth-based Australian hip-hop group Downsyde to further refine his skills in writing, recording and producing music. They will collaborate together on five new tracks, which will be launched at a performance at Goolarri Media’s Gimme Club;
- Leah Vlatko (Geraldton) will create a body of work for her first solo exhibition, an exploration of fungi through the medium of crochet. She will further develop her skills and experience as a textile artist, learning from mentors and experienced artists across the Mid-West region; and
- Joo Tan (Port Hedland) is the recipient of the inaugural KingKira Next Level Grant. Joo will be mentored by established curator Anna Louise Richardson, where she will develop skills to curate her first exhibition working with Hedland youth groups as part of the ‘Open Borders’ project.
The RACIP is administered by the Department of Local Government, Sport and Cultural Industries with funding from the Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development.
As stated by Acting Culture and the Arts Minister Bill Johnston:
“Those in our regional communities can bring diverse perspectives and strengths to our culture and arts sector, and Western Australia as a whole.
“Programs such as the RACIP boost regional WA’s vibrant culture and arts community.
“These young artists and arts workers will now further develop their trade and build skills that will move their careers forward, which in turn brings benefits to their communities.”
As stated by Acting Regional Development Minister Don Punch:
“Congratulations to the successful young regional artists and arts workers who have received these grants.
“The regions have so much to offer and investing in the community brings a wealth of value for everyone.
“Investing locally in regional communities means that the investments suit the needs of those individuals and brings better outcomes.”
Culture and the Arts Minister’s office – 6552 5400