PLWA Kolyang Creative Hub

The Kolyang Creative Hub is the singular event in the WA arts ecology that brings artists & industry-heads together, providing time and space to reflect, question, learn and share.  It is a future-focused site for breaking down silos and knowledge-sharing within the sector: fostering critical thinking and developing innovative new ways of working. 

Kolyang Creative Hub is many things.
It is artist responsive.
It creates space to think.
It is emergent and evolving.
It is a space for experimenting with practice, process and models.
It weaves the collective industry together.
It’s about advocacy.
It’s about self-determination.
It’s about making us stronger for the future. 

Born in 2020 during COVID as a response to the lockdowns, the 4-week program has become an annual event to facilitate interdisciplinary artistic practice sharing, creative developments, panels & conversations.  

With roots stretching deep into the wider sector, 35 independent artists were paid to attend in 2020, increasing to 62 artists in 2021 to develop and drive the content of the Hub to suit their diverse needs.

MAY 31 – JUNE 18, 2021

Subiaco Arts Centre, WA

Curated Program

A public program of showings, industry discussions and provocations from Arts Leaders is curated each year to encourage open access to our artistic community. 

Some of these sessions are recorded. Check out our podcast list below featuring our 2021 program.

If you would like to receive direct information about the program or a specific session, please email


Sector conversations

One of the Kolyang key focuses is to strengthen the sector by engaging in sector-wide discussions and bold conversations, and collectively suggest actions to make our industry better and more cohesive.

On the last day of the Hub, Shona Erskine facilitated a session to thread the advocacy priorities from the artist cohort. This resulted in a report collating the key ideas that had brewed during the hub.

>> Read Kolyang Sector conversation report

Artist Reflectors

Three artists, including Humphrey Bower, Maitland Schnaars and Zoe Street were invited during the Hub to engage in conversations, observe and reflect. On the last day of the Hub, they shared their thoughts in the form of a collective poem.

These words are intended to reflect ideas and experiences shared by panelists, facilitators and participants of the hub and belong to the collective, not the artist.

>> Read the 2021 Artist Reflectors doc

2021 Podcasts



Video interviews

Meet the 2021 cohort

From 106 applications, 52 artists were selected via an EOI process. This included 5 regional artists supported by Circuitwest and 20 artists supported by collaborating WA Arts Organisations.  The Hub cohort was also be joined by 10 emerging diverse artists from the PLWA Kolyang Artist Lab. 


WA Org supported artists

Janine Oxenham – Yirra Yaakin
Bobbi Henry – Yirra Yaakin
Julia Hales – My Space
Rachael Woodward – My Space
Jen Winley – WA Opera
Matthew McVeigh – WA Opera
Emma Fishwick – Co3
Clare Testoni – Spare Parts Puppet Theatre
Ellis Pearson – Spare Parts Puppet Theatre
Stephanie Nicholls – Perth Symphony Orchestra
Annika Moses – Tura
Pavan Hari – Barking Gecko
Grace Chow – Barking Gecko
Kate Page – Sensorium Theatre
Jamie David – Sensorium Theatre
Bruno Booth – PICA
Will O’Mahony – Black Swan
Tomas Ford – Last Great Hunt
Steve Berrick – Last Great Hunt
Arielle Gray – Last Great Hunt
Christopher Isaacs – Last Great Hunt
Mitchell Harvey – STRUT


Adriano Cappelletta
Alexa Taylor
Alex Desebrock
Andrea Gibbs
Brooke Leeder
Bryan Woltjen
Daisy Sanders
Daley Rangi
Elham Eshraghian-Haakansson
Ella Hetherington
Georgia King
Ian Wilkes
Janet Carter
Joe Paradise Lui
Josten Myburgh
Levon Polinelli
Libby Klysz
Mararo Wangai
Mark Haslam
Mel Cantwell
Rachel Arianne Ogle
Russell Thorpe
Sam Nerida
Susie Conte
Tayla Rubin

Regional artists

Bruce Denny
Chrissie Parrott
Margot Edwards
Siobhan Maiden
Rita Bush

PLWA Kolyang Artist Lab

Asha Kiani
Charlie Yong
Crystal Nguyen
Daniel Motearefi
Laura Liu
Lisa Watson
Manjula Radha Krishnan
Medina Dizdarevic
Michele Gould
Valerie Weyland

Ambitious Mid-career/Established Artists

The applications were assessed by members of PLWA and the Artist Advisory. They were assessed according to:
– level of artistic experience
– the potential of cross-collaboration and/or artistic investigation
– investment in industry discussion topics and potential impact of this opportunity for the artist.

We prioritised mid-career to established artists as the focus of the Hub and ensured a cross-section of artforms were represented within the cohort.

Each artist was paid a $1,500 fee to attend the Hub for a minimum of 6 days across the 3-weeks.

In addition, CircuitWest supported regional artists with a travel allowance (or contribution) of up to $1,400 per week for 2 weeks to cover travel, accommodation and per diems.

Artist Advisory

Following our 2020 Creative Hub, the Artist Advisory was established to ensure the program continued to be artist responsive.  The group has been working with PLWA since late 2020 to help in securing funding, assess artist EOI’s and provide new perspectives in curating the program.  Four artists were selected from an EOI process to represent a diverse pool of skills and experience, including Melissa Cantwell, Grace Chow, Alex Desebrock and Daley Rangi.

Melissa Cantwell

Writer and Director

Melissa is a director, writer and Creative Director of The Kabuki Drop. She has a BA (Film, ECU) and post-graduate Bachelor of Performing Arts (Directing, WAAPA). Her works are characterised by their theatricality and playful use of form. She takes a holistic and inclusive approach to her practice and is committed to the collaborative process.

For The Kabuki Drop: The Average Joe (Fringeworld); Blink (Winter Arts Festival); Slap and Tickle (Adelaide Cabaret Festival); The Elders Project (Fremantle Festival) and Whale Fall (Perth Festival 2021). Previous roles include Artistic Director (Perth Theatre Company); Associate Director (PTC) and Program Manager (The Blue Room). She received an Emerging Leader’s fellowship from the International Society for Performing Arts and has been a guest artist and speaker for numerous national organisations and institutions. 


Grace Chow

Theatre-maker, playwright and actor

Grace is an emerging Asian-Australian theatre-maker, playwright and actor who trained in the Bachelor of Performing Arts at the Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts (2020). Her work, which primarily takes place on Whadjuk Noongar Boodja, strives to embrace humanity, insanity and ask the questions that we truly do not know answers to. She has worked with various Australian theatre companies such as Black Swan State Theatre Company, WA Youth Theatre Company, Australian Theatre for Young People, Barking Gecko Theatre Company, Squid Vicious, PROPAGATION NATION and Public Service Announcement.

Her recent performance and performance-making highlights include WAYTCo’s multi-national-award-winning hit REST (2019), Dance Myself to Death at the National Studio Residency (2019), her solo show Noodle Shop on the Corner of Fifth Street (2020) at the Blue Room Theatre and Black Swan’s The Cherry Orchard. In 2020, Grace was a part of the Performing Lines WA Culturally Diverse Artist Residency and continues to carry a passion for inclusivity, accessibility, and diversity in the Australian performing arts ecology.

Alex Desebrock

Social participatory artist

Alex is an independent artist based Whadjuk Noongar land (Perth). Her work spans interactive theatre, live art, installations, online and public interventions. Her practice focuses around empathy, connecting strangers, big questions and the child’s voice. Alex is passionate about creating high quality, insightful arts experiences for children and adults and is the lady behind Maybe (  ) Together which has presented works across Australia including Sydney Festival, Perth International Arts Festival, Come Out Festival, Awesome Festival, The Arts Centre Melbourne and ArtPlay. Recent works include Every Day Super Hero, Small Voices Louder, Future Postal Service and Dear Hope Street.

Alex is a founder of FLOCK, an artist lead initiative that provides PD for and by Perth artists. She also initiated and admins the Facebook group Australian Arts Amidst Covid 19 which has over 20,000 active members. In 2019 Alex was awarded the Theatre Network Australia “Smashing It” award for an independent artist for her work in advocacy for independent artists. 

Daley Rangi

Performance maker, writer and visual artist

Daley is an eclectic multidisciplinary artist generating unpredictable and uncomfortable works through an intersectional lens. A proud advocate for neurodiversity and bodily integrity, they evade categorisation and invade the status quo. Daley spends their energy intensely focusing on speaking truth to power, nurturing marginalised voices, and encouraging social change. They create participatory live performance, write plays and poetry, and paint self-portraits and mountains. 

Daley is the 2021 recipient of the Performance Space Stephen Cummins Residency to continue developing their new participatory decolonial epic Porotehi, and their play Curiosity was nominated for the Griffin Award this year, opening up opportunities for three disabled actors to finally perform complex, layered characters. They also won the Midsumma Queer Art Award for their self-portrait Lipstuck, painted entirely with nail polish and lipstick. They have engaged with several local and national artistic development programs including Moogahlin Performing Arts’ Koori Gras, ATYP’s National Studio & Fresh Ink, Perth Festival Lab, PLWA’s CaLD Residency, Vitalstatistix Adhocracy, BSSTC’s Emerging Writers Group, and PICA & pvi collective’s KISS Club. 


Produced by
Performing Lines WA

2021 Artist Advisory
Melissa Cantwell
Grace Chow
Alex Desebrock
Daley Rangi

2021 Associate Producer
Alex Desebrock

Information for Presenters

Jen Leys Producer
Melanie Julien-Martial Associate Producer
Jeremy Smith Senior Producer

Presentation History

Subiaco Arts Centre
Perth, WA
View full Presentation History

Full Presentation History for PLWA Kolyang Creative Hub

Subiaco Arts Centre
Perth, WA
Subiaco Arts Centre
Perth, WA

Project Partners & Acknowledgements

This initiative has been supported by the Department of Local Government, Sport and Cultural Industries, CircuitWest and Subiaco Arts Centre via Perth Theatre Trust.

This program is also supported by a number of Western Australian performing arts organisations including Perth Institute of Contemporary Arts, CO:3 Australia, Perth Symphony Orchestra, WA Opera, Black Swan State Theatre Company, Yirra Yaakin Theatre Company, Sensorium Theatre, the Blue Room Theatre, Barking Gecko Theatre Company, Perth Festival, Strut Dance, The Last Great Hunt, Tura New Music, Spare Parts Puppet Theatre and My Place.

In everything we do, we acknowledge that we live on Aboriginal land and constantly learn from the wisdom of First Peoples.

Where we are and the history that precedes us informs how we work and how we move forward.