Australian Theatre Forum 2017 - Adelaide, 3-5 October, 2017

Theatre Network Australia announces that Adelaide will host the Australian Theatre Forum as a centrepiece of South Australia’s 2017 OzAsia Festival.

The fifth biennial Australian Theatre Forum, which brings together professional performing artists, presenters, producers, commentators and policy-makers from around the country, will be held from 3-5 October, 2017, at the Adelaide Festival Centre.

Produced by Theatre Network Australia (TNA), the event will bring together more than 400 performing arts leaders to generate discussion around contemporary practice, policy, sustainability and presentation.

The ATF is a highly regarded event that provokes and inspires the sector and stimulates new ideas. With key partners now on board – Australia Council for the Arts, Arts South Australia, and the Adelaide Festival Centre’s OzAsia Festival, Theatre Network Australia is recruiting a curator and a producer to bring the forum to fruition.

Theatre Network Australia will work closely with OzAsia Festival to ensure there are exciting shared programming ideas, guest speakers and artists.


Previous ATFs were held in Melbourne (2009), Brisbane (2011), Canberra (2013) and Sydney (2015). The forum is a three-day event, with a variety of national and international keynotes, breakout sessions, panels, adventure series, and networking events.

Under Theatre Network Australia (TNA) the forum has grown into a highly regarded and vital gathering of the national performing arts sector. It is attended by small to medium sector representatives, major companies, academics, government representatives from state and federal agencies, commentators and critics, presenters and festivals, and independent artists and producers. As in previous years, Theatre Network Australia will run a targeted Expression of Interest process for subsidised places for independent artists, and will seek delegate travel support from each state and territory arts funding agency.

Simon Abrahams, Chair of Theatre Network Australia says: “It’s wonderful to be bringing this highly regarded event to South Australia for the first time. We look forward to working closely with the sector in Adelaide to ensure it is an inspiring event that leaves a legacy for the South Australian sector.”

Nicole Beyer, director of Theatre Network Australia and executive producer of the ATF says: “For the fifth ATF, we have the opportunity of building on the work done by the sector during and since the previous forums, to ensure that these three days are focussed, strategic and galvanising. We will ensure there are discussions on all the crucial topics for the performing arts sector today.

“ATF 2017 will include a focus on cultural diversity and cross-cultural collaboration; an agenda for rebuilding and revaluing the youth theatre sector; sessions tailored for the issues of the larger companies; and an extension of the work that the sector undertook at ATF2015 in honouring Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander arts and culture.”

Your Input

We are also now seeking input from the sector. If you have ideas for content, structure or personnel for the ATF, please go ahead and add your thoughts here. We will be collecting these as a resource for the Curator for when she/he starts.

Seeking a Curator

Theatre Network Australia is now seeking a Curator to work closely with the Theatre Network Australia team (as Executive Producers) and with an appointed Forum Producer, to deliver the forum.

You can download the Curatorial Brief here: ATF 2017 Curatorial Briefing 2_9_16

Expressions of Interest are sought via a short survey, which asks for a summary of your work experience, a statement about what you will bring to the forum, and a few practicalities:  

Expressions of Interest close on Sunday 18th September at 11.59pm.