Staff

Simon Abrahams
Creative Director and CEO

During the Festival, Simon can be seen squeezing more art out of a day than you thought was humanly possible.

Simon is Melbourne Fringe’s Creative Director and CEO and is recognised as one of Australia’s arts and cultural leaders. He has previously held Senior and Executive positions at Polyglot Theatre, The Wheeler Centre, Arts Centre Melbourne and Gasworks Arts Park. Simon is co-founder and life member of Theatre Network Australia and was Chair from 2010 to 2017. He currently sits on the International Society for the Performing Arts’ Programming Committee and the Helpmann Awards Theatre Panel.

In 2014, Simon was awarded a CHASS Australia Prize for leadership and in 2016, Simon was hilariously and inexplicably named as one of Executive Style’s Best Dressed Men in Australia.

He likes experimental performance and 90s pop divas.

Contact Simon via info@melbournefringe.com.au

Business and Operations Team

Contact the Business and Operations team at:
info@melbournefringe.com.au

Will Dawson
General Manager and Deputy CEO

Will’s first Fringe experience also happens to be his very first Melbourne experience. When he moved to Melbourne in 2014 his friend picked him up at the airport, gave him a pair of denim overalls and took him straight to 1992-1-Oh! at the Fringe Club.

Will is an arts manager and festival director based in Melbourne with experience working on a range of festivals in Australia and internationally. Prior to Melbourne Fringe he was the Executive Director of the Emerging Writers’ Festival in Melbourne, where he led the organisation through a period of significant growth, forging major new partnerships to provide platforms for the next generation of Australian storytellers. Will brings a wealth of experience from across the arts sector, having worked for Melbourne Festival, Museums Victoria, 2high Festival and Assembly Festival at the Edinburgh Fringe, among others. He holds a Master of Arts (Arts Management) from RMIT University and a Bachelor of Creative Industries from the Queensland University of Technology. He is pictured here in his natural habitat: eating crackers and dip.

Cal Gleeson
Venue Manager

During the Festival Cal can be found thinking about late night food and drinks options to pair with the shows he’s planning on seeing.

Prior to joining the Melbourne Fringe team, Cal spent four years working at The Butterfly Club, with the last two years as venue manager.

His technical experience from a previous life as a musician, his love of a good sweet and sour balance in a cocktail, and his passion for stock management spreadsheets help him manage all the mechanical stuff behind the scenes, the stressful thirty minutes before the show, and the long pack down afterwards to allow the performers to focus on the exciting things and the audiences to sit back and enjoy.

 

 

 

Carly Findlay
Access Advisor

Carly’s hot tip for Fringe is the words and ideas sessions. She loves a good panel discussion and will probably be live tweeting what’s happening.

Carly’s role is focused on making the Festival and other Melbourne Fringe events accessible and inclusive for participants and audiences who identify as D/deaf and disabled. She’s worked in the Federal Government as an events planner, communicator and executive assistant, as well as in the disability community. Carly has a Master of Communication and Bachelor of eCommerce. She identifies as a proud disabled woman and wants the world to know that disability is not a bad thing.

Outside of working at Fringe, she is a writer, speaker, sometimes-performer and podcaster. Carly is writing her first book and was recently named as Tempest’s 40 women to watch in 2018. She’s rarely met a cheese she didn’t like.

 

Lucy Pitt
Business and Systems Manager

During the festival Lucy can be seen wearing the biggest scarf she can find and trying to convince her friends to go out dancing later…

Lucy’s career in the arts began as an independent artist where she quickly discovered that running around behind the scenes was just as enjoyable as running around on stage.

Prior to Fringe, Lucy worked as a Project Co-ordinator at the Social Research Centre; and in Events Assistant and Administration roles across several organisations including Falls Music and Arts Festival Marion Bay, The Substation, and Museums Victoria.

 

 

 

 

Eden Cotter-Longworth
Executive Assistant

During the Festival, Eden can be seen at Club Fringe having a drink with some kiwis she met earlier that night after hearing their accent across the room

Eden loves the arts but performs (aha) best when she is sitting behind a laptop with her emails and a few excel workbooks open. She is a recent graduate from the Victorian College of Arts with a degree in Stage Management and she has over five years of varied technical experience in the industry. Eden’s top 3 passions are environmentally sustainable arts practice, colour-coded calendars, taking photos of her food in restaurants, getting more young people involved in theatre, and basic addition.

Development Team

Contact the Development Team at:
development@melbournefringe.com.au

Miranda Borman
Head of Development

During the Festival, Miranda can be seen waxing lyrical about the BEST event she just saw – it may involve dancing with 400 people in a Town Square or watching a man dance with a soggy cardboard box, it usually always involves a wee bit of nudity (its Fringe, what can you do?!?)

Miranda started her career as an independent artist and then discovered, much to her delight, that she enjoyed selling tickets to the show, more than actually making the show (capitalism, what can you do?!?). Hence, she found her way into marketing in the arts at organisations such as Ainslie and Gorman Arts Centre and the Canberra International Music Festival before heading to Fringe where she was the Marketing and Development Manager for several festivals before moving into her brand-spanking new role as Head of Development. With a firm belief that arts participation brings social, cultural and personal benefits, Miranda loves that she supports the independent arts.

Pauline Cady
Funding, Strategy and Evaluation Manager

During the Festival, Pauline can be seen fleetingly, elusively, like a shadow, sneaking up on great art.

Pauline graduated from Rusden College in 1989 and is a founding member of Snuff Puppets, working with the company as writer, dramaturg, performer and co- Artistic Director with Andy Freer until 2003. She loved every minute of her stint as funding manager at Back to Back Theatre from 2003 until 2016 and joined Melbourne Fringe in that role in 2016.

Ciaran Frame
Development Coordinator

Ciaran’s hot tip for Fringe is that a good shared calendar to plan your festival is the best thing since sliced bread.

Ciaran Frame is an arts administrator and independent practitioner whose work has covered everything from classical music to event production. Starting his arts journey at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music, Ciaran has gone on to work in music performing rights and teaching before finding his way to Fringe. He is passionate about cross-disciplinary collaboration and is perpetually thrilled to see what lies around the corner in our arts community.

Marketing Team

Contact the Marketing Team at:
marketing@melbournefringe.com.au

Erin Muller
Head of Marketing

Erin’s hot tip for Fringe is… see lots! You’ll uncover some gems, and even if you don’t you’ll have some epic stories to tell later. Nothing ventured, nothing gained.

Erin’s arts and events career started in London back in 2010, where she worked in marketing and PR at Time Out London before jumping into the world of live events. She spent five years in the UK producing and marketing absolutely everything – comedy, cabaret, silent discos… and immersive dining experiences in abandoned hospitals and mechanic workshops. Erin returned to Oz and worked in Marketing at Melbourne International Comedy Festival for four and a half years before joining Melbourne Fringe in 2020. She loves comedy, dogs, cooking and general silliness (both on and off stage).

Caitlin McNaughton
Communications and Engagement Manager

During the Festival, Caitlin can be seen in a dark corner of Club Fringe with a stout in her hand, refreshing a ticketing report.

Caitlin started off her arts management career dealing with hour-long queues of drenched customers at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe’s High Street box office. Since moving to Australia in 2017 she has worked for most of the festivals and eaten most of the dumplings in Melbourne. Caitlin has worked contract roles in every department of Melbourne Fringe, before finding her permanent place in the marketing team – the perfect marriage of her data nerdery and creative chops. As one of Melbourne Fringe’s resident New Zealanders, she provides office entertainment through her pronunciation of the words “bin”, “ten” and “deck”.

Michelle Tseng
Marketing Campaigns Manager

Michelle’s hot tip for Fringe is… close your eyes and randomly click somewhere on the Fringe website, and book your ticket to the show! This lucky dip may not be the best show you’ve ever been, but definitely the weirdest one!

Michelle has been in the festival world for a while, so you have probably seen her everywhere, and heard her being the loudest person in the venue (sometimes even louder than the performer). She worked for Melbourne Fringe in 2017 and 2018, and is back again in 2021 – that’s how much she loves this Festival, just can’t get enough of it. On top of her Fringe experience, she has also worked for the Melbourne International Comedy Festival, Chinese Museum, Monash Academy of Performing Arts, YIRRAMBOI and Arts House. Her biggest fear is people discovering her YouTube browsing history, but if there’s a place that will embrace her quirkiness, it’ll be Melbourne Fringe.

Programs and Projects Team

Contact the Programs and Projects team at:
artists@melbournefringe.com.au

Danny Delahunty
Head of Programs & Projects

Danny’s hot tip for Fringe is get in early! Too many times in the past he’s put off seeing a show he wants to see only to find out everyone else was too and it’s now sold out.

Danny Delahunty is an arts producer and theatre director who has been working broadly in the independent sector for the best part of the past ten years. He has presented over 50 seasons of 34 projects, working with established theatre companies, on independent projects and in touring works around Australia and overseas. Prior to Fringe, Danny was working as the Festival Producer for Drama Victoria, an Events Producer for Melbourne Writers Festival, and the Tours Coordinator for Melbourne International Comedy Festival, as well as continuing his work as an indie project producer and his passion as a theatre director.

Ali Coad
Program Manager (Common Rooms)

During the Festival, Ali can be found dragging curious friends to strange shows and dancing late, late into the night at Club Fringe!

It was 2012 at Adelaide Fringe where Ali fell in love with festivals. From there, her passion for creativity and new experiences has taken her to work with Sydney Festival, Prague Fringe, Edinburgh Festival Fringe, Midsumma Festival and beyond. Ali is an independent arts and venue producer, ticketing nerd, beer enthusiast and has worked in pretty much every role of live events. She’s long been part of the Melbourne Fringe Family; as an independent producer, Ticketing (Nerd) Manager, running and programming independent venue: Errol’s & Co (2017 & 2018) and is a founder of Camp Conscious Collective (Melbourne Fringe Venue of the Year 2019) which is a project that focuses on activating accessible and affordable venues for artists, particularly artists who identify as female and/or queer. Ali reckons sports are fine, but nothing beats sharing GREAT art with a bunch of GREAT humans!

Anna Nalpantidis
Program Manager (Independent Arts)

During the Festival, Anna can be seen colour-coding her calendar and hunting down shows in unconventional locations.

Anna wears a variety of hats including that of director, creative producer, and in recent times, criminal lawyer. She knows what it takes to put on an indie show… in a theatre, in a shipping container, in the windows of a bookstore and in a fully functioning chemical laboratory building. Anna’s real theatrical love is for experimental, site-responsive and multidisciplinary work that explores the relationship between audience, performer and space. As an artist, Anna is a Melbourne Fringe award winner and Ian Potter Cultural Trust Fund recipient. In her spare time, you might catch her listening to a true crime podcast and sipping a natty wine.

 

 

 

Eilysh Toose
Producer (Major Projects)

Eilysh’s hot tip for Fringe is to keep in mind some of the best and most immersive experiences can be found in the quirky or smaller venues.

Eilysh Toose is a participatory and outdoor arts advocate, having worked in the local government sector for a number of years in community arts development and cultural events. Eilysh was the lead producer for the annual Hornsby Shire Festival of the Arts, Hornsby Art Prize and curator at the Wallarobba Arts and Cultural Centre. Now back from a two year stint in the UK working on the Stockton International Riverside Festival and coordinating an annual programme of civic events, Eilysh continues to support the development and delivery of new major works at Melbourne Fringe and is thrilled to be home with her beloved roller skates.

 

 

 

Brigit Ryan
Program Coordinator (Design Fringe)

Brigit’s hot tip for Fringe is to ask everyone you can for advice on what to see – take some risks and see as much as you possibly can!

Brigit is a sculptural artist and arts facilitator, with an insatiable hunger for learning, and a love of sharing knowledge within the creative community. She is particularly interested in bridging the gap between functional and conceptual artwork, and is fairly obsessed with architecture and contemporary art. In recent years, Brigit has taught in the Sculpture and Spatial Practice Department at VCA, was the Editorial Assistant at Art + Australia journal, and currently produces and curates the Midsumma and Australia Post Art Award. She holds a Master of Fine Art from Victorian College of the Arts. When she’s not at Fringe, she is undertaking casual studies in Italian, Arabic and Building Design, playing soccer, producing her own artwork and running arts projects supporting community engagement and mental health.

Consultants

Sam Ryan (S.A.Y.S.O Pty. Ltd.) Bookkeeping
Raft Studio Branding & Creative Agency
Baker McKenzie and Gilbert + Tobin Lawyers Pro Bono Legal Advisers
Eventotron Registration System
Red61 Ticketing
efront and Design by Wolf Website