Black Swan celebrates National Arts and Disability Award winner

The 2023 National Arts and Disabilty Awards presented by Creative Australia held a special significance for the Black Swan State Theatre Company.

Perth-based artist Julia Hales received the $50,000 award for an established artist, recognising her work as a writer, actor and theatre maker.

Hales’ work includes the critically acclaimed production ‘You Know We Belong Together’ co-commissioned by Perth Festival, Black Swan and DADAA.  It premiered at the Perth Festival in 2018 and was later remounted by Black Swan in 2019.

In 2022 the production toured to London’s Southbank Theatre, Edinburgh International Festival and Sydney Opera House to critical acclaim.

Hales said, “Winning this award is very exciting because I get to share my work and to keep helping the voices of people with disabilities. This award makes me feel like I can stand up for myself and my practice, and for other artists (and people) with a disability. I want to make a difference in the world by making work that speaks the truth and in a way that works for us.”

Black Swan recently held a special event to celebrate Hales’ recognition. Creative Australia’s Director of Project Investment, Pip Wittenoom, and Manager Diversity Impact, Caitlin Vaughan, also attended.

Hear more from Julia about what motivates her work as an artist.

Image: From left to right – Creative Australia’s Pip Wittenoom and Caitlin Vaughan, Julia Hales, Black Swan PR Manager Irene Jarzabek, and CEO Ian Booth.

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