Creator and Performer Asphyxia: Asphyxia is a Deaf circus performer, turned puppeteer. Over the past decade, she has toured nationally and internationally performing trapeze, hula-hoops, and (more recently) marionette puppetry. She has created several shows including Blood Makes Noise, which have performed sell-out seasons in Melbourne, Sydney and the U.S. Asphyxia spent 18 months designing and building The Grimstones. She handcrafted old world marionettes using car bog (!) - crafted miniature household objects from junk around the garden - and taught herself carpentry to build the set.
Co-devisor and Performer Paula Dowse: Paula is a long time musician who recently discovered puppetry. For twenty years she worked as a drummer and toured extensively with numerous bands and has recorded more than ten CDs. She has also worked in community arts and been musical director for The Women's Circus, Westside Circus, and a multitude of smaller projects. Paula has qualified as an Auslan interpreter, and has since interpreted for the Deaf community. Now Paula combines her years of experience on the stage, her sign language interpreting skills, and her new love of puppetry to perform in the role of August in The Grimstones.
Producer Roe Ritchie: Roe is the Producer for The Grimstones. Roe has a degree in Media & Communications and has worked for the past 15 years in marketing, both for her own businesses and on behalf of artists around Australia. Roe also manages bookings and touring for The Grimstones and other SkyWorks productions. Roe is passionate about supporting artists across the creative industries to develop innovative works that reach as broad an audience as possible.
Director Kelly Parry: Kelly is the co-writer and co-director of The Grimstones. Kelly is a writer, director, actor and singer. She has created many shows for cabaret, theatre stages, radio and film. In the past two years she has written and directed a play for children called What Wizard?, directed The Two Frocks in Domestic Deluxe for La Mama at the Carlton Courthouse, and directed Lana Schwarz's 2008 Adelaide Fringe award-winning play Grandpa Sol and Lily's Grandma Rosie. New to puppetry, Kelly brought many wonderful elements to The Grimstones. She worked closely with Paula, developing the role of August into a most delightful and endearing character.
Co-Director Gabrielle Griffin: Gabrielle is the co-director of The Grimstones. Gabrielle is an independent puppeteer and theatre maker. She has worked with Krinkl Theatre since 2003, touring nationally and internationally with shows including the award-winning Tightrope. She has devised and directed puppet shows including Pegging up the Sky with her puppet, Ciel. Recently she completed a season at the Adelaide Fringe Festival before touring with the Puppet Caravan across the Nullabor to Perth for the UNIMA 2008 World Puppetry Festival.
She is passionately committed to exposing unsuspecting adult audiences to the wonder of puppetry, and can't help but bring life to inanimate objects wherever she goes.
Puppetry Director Heath McIvor: Heath is the puppetry director for The Grimstones. He stumbled into puppetry at the age of 17, apologised, bought it a drink and the two have been firm friends ever since.
From theatre to film and television, Heath has performed in almost every style of puppetry imaginable, including one show where he spent 15 minutes manipulating a sprig of rosemary. With a career spanning four continents, Heath has been a writer, director, collaborator, teacher, performer and freeloader on everything from the largest scale arena spectacular to the "least attended two-bit piece of hokey backyard pathetic excuse for a children's party I've ever had the misfortune of attending" My cousin Rachel, no stars. Heath most recently collaborated with Sammy J to co-write and perform in Sammy J and Randy in Ricketts Lane, winning the award for best show at the 2010 Melbourne International Comedy Festival.
Composer Ania Reynolds: Ania is a freelance musician and sound designer who created the soundtrack for The Grimstones. Her other recent work has been with Polyglot Puppet Theatre Company (Checkout, 2007) and Westside Circus (Spilt Milk), as well as composing soundtracks for Pirated! (Sweet 'N' Sour Circus, Melbourne International Comedy Festival 2008). She is currently working on The Big Game, a large-scale community project/theatre show developed by Polyglot as part of the Melbourne International Arts Festival. Ania has worked as sound designer for NICA, the Women's Circus, and various other independent theatre projects, as well as composing music for film. She is a member of the cabaret act Yana Alana and Tha Paranas, which won the 2007 Melbourne Fringe Festival Cabaret Award, and was nominated for six 2008 Green Room Awards, winning Best Director. Ania plays in several bands and has performed at various festivals and music venues around the country.