Gary Mears (President since June 2015; Vice-President 2009 – 2015; Secretary 2005 –2009; Committee Member since 2003)
Gary has achieved a successful career in marketing, tourism, festivals, events, performing arts and venue management including over 25 years in senior management positions. Gary commenced in the position of Sunshine Coast Events Centre General Manager in June 2013 and held the position of Ipswich City Council Civic Centre Manager from 2001 to May 2013. Gary’s professional experience includes Manager of his own business Stagesound Promotions, Toowoomba Events and Tourism Corporation Chief Executive Officer, Toowoomba Carnival of Flowers Chief Executive Officer, Ipswich City Council Marketing Manager, Arts Consultant and Professional Entertainer. Gary is an active member of the VMA (Venue Managers Association), APACA (Australian Performing Arts Centres Association) and past President of the Queensland Festivals Association.
John started his career as a musician in his teens and went on to complete a Bachelor of Business majoring in marketing while working as a casual theatre technician. John toured extensively throughout the US and Europe with a youth arts organisation and returned to Brisbane where he performed on the local club scene and was part of the initial set up team that opened the Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre. John worked at the Queensland Performing Arts Centre developing extensive ticketing experience culminating in an integral role in the development of internet ticketing at QPAC as Administration and Systems Manager for Qtix. This period was punctuated with a stint as producer’s assistant on the original tour of Boy from OZ. In 2003, John joined Brisbane Powerhouse as Box Office Manager and progressed through the positions of Theatre Hire Manager, Producer – Jazz, and Operations Manager, including management of technical and production services and the functions and events business. John managed the practical aspects of the venue’s six-month refurbishment period in 2007. His subsequent appointment as Precinct Director saw him assume responsibility for the overall management of the Brisbane Powerhouse precinct, its resources and commercial tenancies. After 10 years at Brisbane Powerhouse, John was appointed to the role of Venue Manager, Program Leader for Logan Entertainment Centre and Community Venues in 2013. John was previously a member of the Performing Arts Committee of the International Association of Venue Managers.
Kerry Saul (Treasurer since 2015; Committee Member since 2014)
Kerry has been active within the NARPACA circuit since 1982, when he worked for New Moon Theatre Company in North Queensland and has worked in or toured to most of the NARPACA venues. In 1987 he opened Mackay Entertainment Centre as Technical Manager and in 1997 moved to Toowoomba to open The Empire Theatre in the same role. Kerry has been General Manager of Empire Theatres since 2011. He is a member of VMA and APACA and holds a diploma in Theatre and Events. Kerry has been active with NARPACA over many years as a member of the NARPACA Technical Committee and now continues this involvement in his role as Technical Representative for NARPACA’s Management Committee.
Stephen Foster (Secretary since June 2015; Committee Member since 2015) – Details about Stephen coming soon
Bronte Morris is an Arts Professional with over 30 years’ experience specialising in Community Development and Community Engagement creative initiatives. Previously she has been Executive Producer/Director for Brisbane Multicultural Art Centre, Event Officer for Moreton Bay Regional Council, General Manager of Performance Space (Sydney), Front of House Business Development Manager for Brisbane Powerhouse and Executive Director for Hands on Art Children’s Art Centre South Bank. She is currently Venue Coordinator of Moncrieff Entertainment Centre.
Lyn Patch (Committee Member co-opted Sept 2015)
Lyn Patch is a CPA and holds a Bachelor of Business from USQ. Lyn has been Chief Financial Officer at Brisbane Powerhouse since 2006 and is involved in the strategic, operational and financial management of this iconic arts organisation and venue. Lyn brings general management and commercial expertise to the arts which she has gained across a number of industries. She is a partner in and past director of Big Wheels Truck Alignment which is the largest national truck wheel alignment provider in Australia. She held the position of Executive Director of Knakaz Fashion Boutique and was Assistant Company Secretary at Pioneer Permanent Building Society where she held a key role in capital raising and their float on the stock exchange.
Lea Schuster (Committee Member c0-opted Sept 2015)
Box Office and Marketing Network Sub-Committee
With over 20 years experience, Robyn Gander is an expert in ticketing for live performance and events. Starting her career at the Gold Coasts Arts Centre, Robyn later moved to Sydney to take up a position with Sydney Symphony. Her career soon leads her to Ticketmaster, working across theatre and several outdoor events, including the V8 Supercars at Bathurst, Major Golf Tournaments & Moon light Cinema and Cirque Du Soleil. For the past 12 years Robyn has been sharing her expertise with the Queensland Performing Arts Centre as Ticketing & Client Service Manager. She has had the joy to work on some of the major live performances performed in Queensland, including Phantom of the Opera, Dusty, Wicked, Mary Poppins, Lion King, Paris Opera Ballet, American Ballet, Opera Australia, Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra, Driving Miss Daisy and many more.
Technical Managers’ Sub-Committee
Tim Panitz (Chair of Technical Managers since 2015) – details about Tim coming soon.
Suzan Williams (NARPACA Executive Officer since 2010)
Before joining NARPACA, Suzan was Queensland’s Blue Heeler (national performing arts tour coordinator) at Queensland Arts Council for five years where she developed and delivered over 20 state and national tours of a mix of Queensland’s major and small-to-medium companies and independent artists. In this role, Suzan was a key advocate for performing arts touring and heavily involved in extending and refining existing touring networks and coordination mechanisms (Cyberpaddock web site, Long Paddock product showcase, annual NARPACA Showcase). From 1999-2005, Suzan was Business Development Manager and Web Coordinator for ToadShow Pty Ltd, a Brisbane-based creative communications company specialising in graphic design for print, web and multimedia. She has been a professional dancer and choreographer and toured the state extensively working with Queensland Ballet, Darc Swan Contemporary Dance Company and with her own touring dance-education programs for Queensland Arts Council’s School Touring Program. Suzan has a Bachelor of Arts in Dance from QUT and is a qualified ballet teacher in the Cecchetti Method of Classical Ballet. She has served on numerous boards including, a five-year term as a member of the Australia Council for the Arts Dance Board and for almost two decades, as a committee member of Cecchetti Ballet Australia – Queensland Branch. Suzan is currently Chair of Ausdance Qld and has been an Ausdance Qld Management Committee member since 2008.
Helen Lake (Accounts Officer 2014 – current; Executive Assistant 2009-2014)
Helen has over 20 years bookkeeping and administration experience and has been Executive Assistant and Bookkeeper of NARPACA since 2009 and General Manager/Proprietor of DDIY Services since 2000. Helen’s previous experience includes: Wedding photographer for Gary Rampton Photographics in Gladstone 1982 to 1992 and retail photographic sales 1982 to 1985; Secretary at Anthony Black Solicitors & Craig Woodhouse Accountants 1985 – 1986 in Perth; Receptionist at Gladstone Optical 1986 to 1990; Financial controller/administrator and co-director of Express Auto Electrics for 10 years until 2000. Helen has been the Treasurer of the Talara Primary College P&C since 2007 and holds a Certificate IV Accounting, Certificate IV Bookkeeping and is a registered BAS Agent (ATO Tax Practitioners Board).