Staff and Board
Biographies

STAFF

Phillip Adams, Artistic Director


Phillip Adams' career in dance and performance spans over 25 years as a vital contributor to the richness of Australian performing arts. Adams' works provide a crucial point of differentiation: an alternative modality, fearless choreographic practice and risk-taking approach to creation and presentation.

Adams’ process draws on collaboration through hybrid mediums of music, design, fashion, architecture, cinema, visual arts and photography engaging with the unorthodox, queer and popular culture. Phillip's process defines a model and a psychologically generative, collaborative environment that continually extends the parameters of dance and visual art-based practise to produce bold artistic choreography and artworks.

Adams is a graduate from the Victorian College of the Arts in 1988 and thereafter spent a decade performing and working in New York with many companies and independent choreographers.  Adams returned to Australia in 1997 and established his company Phillip Adams BalletLab. Adams has created 18 major works for BalletLab presented internationally and leading Festival and venues in the USA Europe and Asia. Commissions include: The Australian Ballet, Chunky Move, Back to Back Theatre, Lux Boreal (Mexico) Guongdong Modern Dance Company (China), Dance Works Rotterdam (Nederland’s), City Contemporary Dance Company (Hong Kong), Niteroi City Ballet (Brazil). Adams works have been presented  by Museum of Old and New Art, Heide Museum of Modern Art and the National Gallery of Victoria, and awarded a design for the Melbourne Art Tram series. Recently Phillip won the 2018 Australia Council Award for Dance.

luke george, Artistic associate

Artistic Associate, Curator, Artist: Luke George (lutruwita -Tasmania, 1978) creates new choreographic and visual work that takes daring and at times, unorthodox methods, to explore new intimacies and connections between artist and audience. Luke’s artistic practice is informed by queer politics, whereby people are neither singular nor isolated; bodies of difference can intersect, practice mutual listening, take responsibility for themselves and one another. Based in Narrm (Melbourne), Luke creates, performs and collaborates with artists and the public across Australia, Asia, Europe and North America. In 2019 Luke was recipient of an Australia Council for the Arts Fellowship and premiered new works in Dance Massive and the Venice Biennale. In 2020 Luke was appointed Artistic Associate of Temperance Hall and to the Co-Design Consultation Group for a dedicated Melbourne dance festival. In 2021, Luke is presenting performance commissions for the National Galleries of both Victoria and Singapore, the Liveworks Festival of Experimental Arts (Sydney), and a permanent design installation commissioned for Melbourne’s newly built Victorian Pride Centre.

Find out more: lukegeorge.net/

anna mcdermott, program producer


Anna McDermott is a multidisciplinary artist and writer with many years of experience working in venue management and art-related contexts. Her installation and performative-based practice employs photographic, filmic, sound and sculptural mediums to choreograph spaces for bodies to navigate.

In 2020 Anna graduated from the Masters of Contemporary Art program at the Victorian College of the Arts, for which she was awarded the Fiona Myer Art and Australia Internship. In the year after graduating from RMIT University with a Bachelor of Fine Art (Honours), she was awarded the Nillumbik Prize for Contemporary Works of Excellence, and undertook an artist in residency program at Takt AIR Berlin, Germany. 

Anna has exhibited in various art spaces across Australia, including: Kings ARI (Melbourne), Sawtooth ARI (Launceston), 107 Projects (Sydney), Alternating Current Art Space (Melbourne), 45 Downstairs (Melbourne), Darwin Visual Arts (Darwin), Bus Projects (Melbourne, Online) and Blindside Gallery (Melbourne, Online). Anna is interested in the poetic languages of the body, space, touch, spoken word and favours artistic encounters that privilege intuitive, embodied receptions.

 

Sophie gabrielle pigramis, Venue and Operations Coordinator

Sophie Gabrielle Pigram is a contemporary photographer and curator who has been actively producing art events in Melbourne for the last five years. In 2021 they graduated from the Masters of Arts Management at the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology, their final thesis focussing on audience engagement and education through curation.

Since graduating from Photography Studies College in 2015 with a Bachelor of Photography, majoring in Fine Art, their work has been exhibited in Australia, Malaysia, The Netherlands, France, Germany, South Korea, the USA and the UK. They were the first Australian recipient of Foam Talent (2018) and a finalist for the Lensculture Emerging Talent Awards (2016). Their past clients include The New Yorker, The Royal Orchestra of The Netherlands, The Brussels Philharmonic, Obscura Photo Festival, VOSTOK (South Korea) and Youthies (Italy). They have also participated in two artist residencies, Gullkistan (Iceland) & and Muong AIR studio (Vietnam). Sophie’s work uses archive, alternate processing and the human body to investigate the connection between photography and psychology.

They are also a board member of Good Moon Rising, a non-profit creative collective that creates safe spaces for gender diverse artists and musicians to be celebrated in Melbourne.

BOARD

Company in residence, Phillip Adams BalletLab is a vital part of Temperance Hall. BalletLab’s Board brings specialised skills to augment the management team, providing oversight and governance across all company operations.

Phoebe Dunn - Chair

Member, Commonwealth Administrative Appeals Tribunal

Phoebe Dunn is a Member of the Commonwealth Administrative Appeals Tribunal. She has extensive senior leadership experience in the private, public and for purpose sectors, most recently as CEO of a national charity. Phoebe has held senior legal roles with leading international law firm Ashurst (formerly Blake Dawson), and with the Commonwealth and Victorian Governments. Phoebe has also held senior leadership positions in the visual arts sector including as Chief Executive Officer of the Australian Commercial Galleries Association and as a Director of the Melbourne Art Foundation.

wayne box – Treasurer and non executive board member

Head of Finance, Victorian Major Transport Infrastructure Project

BalletLab's Treasurer and Non Executive Board member, Wayne Box, is a Chartered Accountant with thirty years experience in finance roles locally, nationally and internationally across a variety of sectors from Chartered Accounting, Major Events, Publishing and the Arts. Wayne is the Deputy Director, Finance at the Level Crossing Removal Project - the Victorian State Government's program removing 85 of the most dangerous and congested level crossings across Melbourne. Outside of his professional employment, Wayne also is a graduate of Leadership Victoria's Williamson Community Leadership Program and is a passionate supporter of GLBTIQ+ rights, social justice and the performing arts.

Phillip Adams – Secretary

Artistic Director, Phillip Adams BalletLab

Phillip Adams is the founder and Artistic Director of BalletLab, forming the company upon his return home from New York in 1998. Phillip is a graduate of the Victorian College of the Arts and his performing arts background spans a 25 year career in contemporary dance. Phillip lived and worked in New York for a decade after being awarded the ANZ International Fellowship Award in 1988. He was a member of several leading dance companies and worked with many independent choreographers including BeBe Miller, Trisha Brown, Irene Hultman, Sarah Rudner, Amanda Miller, Donna Uchizono and Nina Wiener. He has since been commissioned by numerous companies in Australia and overseas.

Emily Westmore - Board Member

Manager Governance and Accountability and Board Secretary, Museums Victoria

Emily Westmore has extensive engagement, governance and strategy experience across public, private and creative sectors. Emily worked for over a decade in the screen production industry, including seven years with Film Victoria facilitating the attraction of international screen production to locate in the state and also with AusFilm, the federal screen production attraction agency in their Los Angeles office. Emily has also held senior advisory and corporate governance positions in the Victorian state government departments of Justice and Regulation and Education and Training, and for the professional services firm KPMG. Emily is currently with Museums Victoria as Manager Governance and Accountability, leading the organisation’s Board Secretariat, governance and performance reporting functions.

Nicola Stein - Board Member

Director, THIS IS NO FANTASY

Nicola is a Director of THIS IS NO FANTASY, a contemporary art gallery located in Fitzroy, Melbourne. She has successfully developed strategies to navigate a rapidly changing art market, expanding the gallery’s reach and international profile including through participation in key international art fairs. Nicola was previously a Director of Helen Gory Galerie and prior to entering the arts was a Senior Associate at Minter Ellison law firm. She is active in the not for profit arts sector.

Tony Harding - board member

Senior Production Manager, Arts Centre Melbourne

After graduating from the Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts, Tony has worked internationally and nationally in the theatre and event industries across multiple roles including Producer, Production Manager and Stage Manager. Outside of his professional work, he has been an active board member of several community organisations such as the Melbourne Queer Film and Midsumma Festivals. He has a long association with Phillip Adams and BalletLab starting in 2000 with the international tour of Amplification to Manchester, Beijing and Mongolia. 

Randal Patterson – Board Member

Executive Director, Infrastructure and Utilities, Commonwealth Bank of Australia

Randal is currently Executive Director, Real Estate and Infrastructure with the Commonwealth Bank of Australia where he arranges funding for major clients of the Bank. He has extensive experience in banking and finance in Australia and internationally and joined the Board in 2019. Outside of work, Randal is passionate about history, social justice, creative arts, and sport.

Finance and Governance Subcommittee 

Emily Westmore (Chair), Aimee Dixon (Treasurer), Randal Patterson (Board Member)

Artistic Subcommittee 

Nicola Stein (Chair, Director THIS IS NO FANTASY), Serena Bentley (Curator, Australian Centre for the Moving Image), Matthew Bird (Senior Lecturer, Monash Art Design and Architecture and Architect), Gregory Lorenzutti (Independent Artist), Rebecca Jensen (Independent Artist), Briony Galligan (Independent Artist) and Phillip Adams (Artistic Director).