Australia: Cre8ion

Based in Sydney, Cre8ion is a production and touring company that specialises in large-scale shows and spectacles. It’s an organisation that tends to take on unique, distinctive events: in recent years Cre8ion has produced World AIDS Day, bringing cultural leaders like Aung San Suu Kyi, Michel Sidibé and James Chau to Australia, to raise awareness of HIV and AIDS. It’s also been involved in developing and implementing Vivid Sydney (pictured), an annual event that’s billed as a festival of light, music and ideas. In addition to a contemporary music programme, Vivid Sydney illuminates some of the city’s iconic architecture with light installations, and also encourages business leaders and artists to exchange ideas.

Cre8ion’s business model is also unique, explains producer and co-founding director Theresa Famularo. ‘The company was set up from the outset to be as self-sufficient as possible, by working across two platforms; events and theatre,’ she says. ‘The events arm produces the profit stream for the company to reinvest, and take risks in the theatre arm. At the same time we do look to produce work in the theatrical space that is commercially viable with a strong global voice.’

Cre8ion was launched in 2008 when Famularo spotted what she believed to be a gap in the Australian market. ‘I saw an opportunity in the ecology of the industry to provide producing services to creators in the small to medium sector, whose work beyond the initial season was well developed, and had a life beyond Australia, but the creator did not necessarily have the skills, tools or relationships to take the work any further. This, married with a continuing involvement in events, became the basis for the model of the company.’

‘As the company has grown we have looked to commission new work for global touring,’ adds Famularo.

In the coming months, Cre8ion will tour family show FLUFF through the US and Canada, including at The New Victory Theater in New York, Chicago Humanities Festival, The Calgary International Children’s Festival, PlayhouseSquare in Cleveland, Walton Arts Center in Arkansas, and Segerstrom Center for the Arts in California.

FLUFF © Sean Young
FLUFF © Sean Young

Created by performance artist Christine Johnston with choreography from Lisa O’Neill, FLUFF is an imaginative theatrical production for children and young people. Telling the story of a family who travel the world to recover lost and discarded toys, the production has a quirky set design that contrasts new technology and old hand-made toys.

‘Cre8ion has also worked with several artists in creating strong and entertaining cabaret shows featuring Virginia Gay, Damian Ross and Nick Christo,’ says Famularo. ‘And we’re also in development with a new work for global touring in 2015, featuring seven of Australia’s up-and-coming soprano singers.’

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