Performing Lines announces retirement of Wendy Blacklock in April 2011 as the company celebrates 21 years

Posted by Morgan Leek, December 13th, 2010

Wendy Blacklock celebrates at the 2010 West Australian Dance Awards. Image: Lisa Businovski. Courtesy of Ausdance WA.

It is a day that had to come. The end of an era and the start of a new one. The Boss is finally retiring!

Performing Lines announces retirement of Wendy Blacklock in April 2011 as the company celebrates 21 years.

Performing Lines has announced that founder and General Manager Wendy Blacklock will retire in April 2011 to coincide with the company’s 21st anniversary.

Wendy has devoted her energy to developing, producing and touring Australian artists and independent companies for almost 30 years. Robin Hughes, Chair of Performing Lines, said: “Wendy’s intuition, unrivalled experience and impeccable judgment have ensured that Performing Lines has become, under her leadership, a unique and indispensable support for the performing arts in Australia. Wendy herself is irreplaceable, but she will be leaving the organisation in great shape to continue to expand its vital role in championing Australia’s contemporary performing arts.”

Wendy’s dedication and services to the field have been recognized with many awards, including an Order of Australia, a Helpmann’s JC Williamson Award, a Drovers’ Touring Legend Award from APACA, and a Sydney Theatre Award for Lifetime Achievement. Most recently, her contribution was honored in the newly unveiled Theatre Walk at Walsh Bay.

“Performing Lines has faced many challenges over the years, but I have been fortunate to have worked with staff who genuinely care for the artists and small companies who we support. Without their dedication to finding and nurturing a unique Australian theatrical style, Performing Lines would not have been successful,” Wendy said of the company.

Performing Lines began life in 1982, as the Australian Content Department of the Australian Elizabethan Theatre Trust, and was incorporated as Performing Lines in 1990. Significant projects include the tour of Robert Merritt’s The Cake Man to Denver, Colorado in 1982 – the first time an Australian Indigenous production received an invitation to a World Theatre Festival; and the commissioning of Jack Davis’ No Sugar, and subsequent performances in Canada, London and around Australia. Performing Lines has produced and toured the work of William Yang and Kate Champion, as well as Nigel Jamieson’s acclaimed production The Theft of Sita, which toured internationally on three occasions, and more recently Ngurru-milmarramiriw (Wrong Skin), featuring the Chooky Dancers from Elcho Island. Support for Tanja Liedtke, Marrugeku, Wesley Enoch, Chrissie Parrott and Tom Holloway illustrate just how diverse the program can be.

The Board will now begin the task of identifying a replacement for Wendy Blacklock to allow for a smooth transition into the company’s next era. A strong field of talent is expected for what is an excellent opportunity to lead a unique and vital company.

Antonia Seymour, 02 9319 0066 / 0423 975 419 /
Larina Hansen, 02 9319 0066 /