Vote for Us! 2017 Ruby Award for Arts Innovation & Enterprise

5. EATD - Headed to the city?

What we did
Through June 2016 – June 2017 Slingsby put into action a strategic plan to build income from diverse sources and increase the company’s performance activity. The success of the delivery of this plan has doubled Slingsby’s turnover, deepened the company’s connection to the South Australian community and led to invitations to present four productions across four countries in 2018.


What people said

“I’ve just returned back from your showing of Emil and the Detectives to the ####### school and I felt compelled to write and congratulate you – the show was absolutely fantastic.

I was completely blown away by the standard of the performance and the level of fine detail paid to each and every aspect of the show. Of credit, the two actors were brilliant, and the lighting was a spectacle. As a musician I could not get enough of the scores, which fit so perfectly and brought the setting of the show to the next level. The set design, costuming, and audience interaction were also just fantastic.

Thank you for an excellent show – I’ll be sure to keep an eye and an ear out for Slinsgby shows in the future if that is the level of quality you present.” Emil and the Detectives audience member

“The attention to detail is phenomenal…. The Young King is charming, majestic and utterly delightful and a beautiful jewel in the Festival crown.” Gordon Forester, Limelight

“Anyone who has been to a show by local theatre company Slingsby knows that they create magical, intelligent and whimsical theatre for audiences young and old. So it’s with high expectations that I head into their latest show, for the Adelaide Festival, Oscar Wilde’s The Young King…. From the get-go, the experience is intimate and immersive….Overton shines as the young king, exuding innocence and warmth, and his more powerful scenes near the end are tear-inducing. He is joined by veteran actor Jacqy Phillips, who is mesmerising in her various roles…. My expectations were not only met but exceeded by this beautiful show. I was left feeling that not only had I experienced something truly special, but that the world is a better place for having a company like Slingsby in it.” Sky Harrison, Aspire Magazine

In May 2016 Slingsby was advised that it had failed to secure multi-year funding through the Australia Council for the Arts. The day after receiving this news the company submitted an application to showcase their acclaimed production The Young King at the International Performing Arts for Youth Showcase in Madison, Wisconsin USA.

Market Development
Despite losing ongoing federal funding, Slingsby was prepared to back itself and invested more than $50,000 in presenting The Young King in Madison in January 2017. This showcase performance was an enormous success with the show winning the coveted Victor Award (best work) selected by 400+ international delegates at IPAY.

This entrepreneurial activity also led to invitations for the production to be presented across North America, Ireland and the United Kingdom. The Young King will open the 2017/18 season of the New Victory Theater on 42nd Street, New York ahead of a season at the Sydney Opera House.

Due to high demand and interest in The Young King, Slingsby built a second Set to meet touring demand in both hemispheres.

In February 2017 Slingsby pitched The Young King at Showbroker in Adelaide and Queensland Touring Showcase in Brisbane. These two successful showcases have resulted in a national tour in 2019, which will see the production tour across six Australian states (WA, VIC, NSW, QLD, NT and SA).

As a result of the entrepreneurial activity Slingsby’s The Young King is set to tour to up to 40 venues across 2017-2019.

Giving Circles
In May 2017 Slingsby successfully launched the Council of Companions and Journeyfolk Giving Program, generating significant financial support for the development and premiere presentation of new Slingsby productions. In the period May to June 2017 alone, Slingsby raised $88,000 through philanthropy and private giving.

Audience Engagement
Feedback from teachers and students viewing Slingsby productions over the past decade revealed a desire to learn more about Slingsby’s creative process. In direct response to this audience need, 2017 Slingsby implemented its Education Residency Program. Each Residency sees Artistic Director Andy Packer and Artistic Associate, composer Quincy Grant, spend five double lessons in a school, working with a class of senior drama students over a five week period (7.5-10 hours each residency). This intensive program allows the artists to share Slingsby’s theatre making expertise, inspiring, educating and collaborating with students and staff in making small, exploratory pieces of theatre.

The sun loved him and warmed him as he worked in the days, but at night the moon laughed at him as it took his castles out to sea