At this year’s Green Room Awards, the Technical Achievement Award went to Laurel Frank of Circus Oz.
The award for Innovation in Contemporary Circus went to Skye Gellmann, Naomi Francis, Alex Gellmann and Kieran Law for Bodies over Bitumen.
In the Cabaret category, Briefs was granted awards for Production and Ensemble – Fez Fa’anana, Mark ‘Captain Kidd’ Winmill, Dallas Dellaforce, Evil Hate Monkey, Louis Biggs, Lachy Shelley and Thomas Worrell.
Photo of Bodies Over Bitumen by Ponch Hawkes
Richard Watts reports on ArtsHub on Laurel Frank’s prize:
Richard Watts | ArtsHub | March 22nd 2016
The Technical Achievement Award was presented to Circus Oz seamstress and founding member Laurel Frank by Melbourne International Comedy Festival Director/CEO Susan Provan, who described herself as ‘pleased and honoured’ at the opportunity to recognise Frank’s work behind the scenes.
‘She is a costume designer … and she turned those stitching hands to actually building the very first Circus Oz tent, and then on to all the wonderful costumes that we all know about … She’s a designer, she’s an artist, she’s a screen-printer, a collage-maker, a builder, a diplomat … she can really turn her hand to anything,’ said Provan.
Accepting the award, Frank reflected on her time in the industry, starting at the Pram Factory where she was ‘offered $60 a week in the late 1970s to hang around … and do whatever,’ and of the need to have more plays by female playwrights produced.
She also spoke of some of the more outlandish costumes she had been asked to make over the years, such as ‘a group of vain and muscular zebras with castanets on their knees and retractable tails; and later for a set of garden costumes with 18th century refinement but also a good representation of compost.
Image Credit: Ponch Hawkes