2019 Neil Curnow Award

16 October 2019

The Helpmann Academy, in partnership with The Independent Arts Foundation, is delighted to announce the recipient of the 2019 Neil Curnow Award, Lachlan Barnett.

Lachlan is an emerging actor and theatre maker, who graduated from Flinders University in 2016. He will receive up to $10,000 towards a professional development program of his design.

Established in 2005 and made possible through the generous bequest of the late Neil Curnow (passionate actor, director and teacher), The Neil Curnow Award supports emerging artist to undertake further study or an internship at a recognised institution.

Lachlan will be using the award to travel to the UK in January 2020 to undergo a full-time puppetry course with Curious School of Puppetry (CSP) in Falmouth, Cornwall. The six-week course will help Lachlan develop a physical understanding of puppetry technique, craft and design with the outcome of diversifying his practice as a performer and theatre maker. Lachlan aims to use his experience at CSP to create his own original character and program to be used to tell stories and facilitate discussion about and for primary school aged children.

Lachlan is excited to diversify his skills and create something truly unique for Australian youth audiences.

“I am very ambitious and in order to take the next step forward, I believe creating original and innovative content is my best move. I feel like the timing to do this is now, but, in order to stand out from the pack and be confident that my original content can hold a place within the already diverse Adelaide theatre scene, I need to ensure that what I am offering can’t be seen anywhere else.”

Jane MacFarlane, Helpmann Academy CEO said that the Neil Curnow Award has helped launch many creative careers.

“Since 2005 The Neil Curnow Award has helped emerging creatives to further their skills and launch their theatre/acting careers. We are thrilled that Lachlan has been awarded the 2019 Neil Curnow and look forward to seeing what stories he will be able to share following his extended studies.”

Lachlan Barnett was presented with the Neil Curnow Award at the Independent Arts Foundation Literary Dinner at the Havelock Hotel on Tuesday, 15 October 2019.

Image: Lachlan Barnett performing in The Young King, by Slingsby Theatre Company.

The Neil Curnow is presented in partnership with the Independent Arts Foundation.