Julian Hobba Executive Director

Dear members and friends, 

I’m writing to let you know that I am going to be leaving The Blue Room Theatre soon, with my last day being 17 April.  

I’m moving on to take up a great opportunity, which I will be able to share before I leave.  

Needless to say, between the Covid-19 crisis and Friday’s Australia Council announcement about four-year funding, the timing and the circumstances under which I’ll be leaving are not ideal or what I would have hoped. However, with our fantastic Board we have put in place a process to make the change in leadership as smooth as possible.   

Beginning full time next week, Katt Osborne will transition into being Acting Executive Director through until 30 June. All members will know Katt as a prolific and successful independent artist, once of the Duck House and founding member and general manager of The Last Great Hunt.  

Katt has stepped down from the Board to act in the role; with her long history with The Blue Room Theatre as an artist, staff member in other roles and most recently a member of the Board, she is an ideal person to step in during this time.  

Recruitment for a permanent ED position will begin in mid-April, soon after the Easter break. You’ll note from recent communication that the Performing Arts Centre Society AGM has been postponed to 30 June to allow for this process. 

Katt, Harriet and I are working together now on how The Blue Room Theatre will continue to support the creative practice and community of Western Australian independent artists over the coming months and we all look forward to consulting and sharing with you about that over coming days and weeks. 

Katt wants to say: 

I have been a great supporter of Julian and his leadership of The Blue Room Theatre over the past three years and am very sad to see him leave us, but very excited by the new opportunities he will be pursuing.  

I am grateful for the board and staff’s trust in me to take the helm as acting executive director to ensure a smooth transition to new permanent leadership, and I am looking forward to working in the organisation in this new capacity.   

I have been a member of since 2008 and have ‘grown up’ as an artist, producer and casual staff member at The Blue Room Theatre since then, as well as recently served a two-year term on the board. I will be bringing these experiences, and many others as a WA-based independent artist and producer, to this interim acting role. 

Shane wants to say: 

Julian has made a significant contribution to The Blue Room Theatre over the last three years. While we are sad to see him depart, we are also confident that Julian leaves The Blue Room Theatre in good shape to recover from a difficult period as we welcome Katt Osborne to act in the role. I know members will join the Board and our staff in thanking Julian and wishing him every success in his arts management career. 

Julian’s leadership has introduced major changes in our annual program including the move to one development season and the new Winter Nights festival. He was also instrumental in completing a new future looking strategic plan and the hugely successful ‘transformation’ fundraising campaign that will enable the Blue Room Theatre to continue its outstanding support of artists and audiences finto the future 

And I would like to say: thank you to all the members and artists.  

You have welcomed me into, and trusted me with, something incredibly precious over the last three years. When I think about The Blue Room Theatre I am full of awe and admiration for what it does simply by people working together, gathering together and celebrating together. It values its history and lives its values and has allowed so many to have a creative voice. I always describe The Blue Room Theatre as being fortified by concentric circles of strong commitment, beginning with the staff and moving out from there through the Board, membership and wider community. Thank you especially to my close colleagues; you are wonderful people.  

I have lots of amazing memories of great shows and great nights from my time here. I will miss The Blue Room Theatre terribly and I know it will rebuild stronger than ever. 

Yours truly, 
Julian Hobba
Executive Director