The Farm

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Based on the Gold Coast with roots in Berlin, The Farm is an international network of highly respected artists, ranging from choreographers and independent dancers to musicians and designers. The artistic direction of the company is led by Gavin Webber and Grayson Millwood, who have been making work together for the past fifteen years across four continents. The Farm works out of Queensland but retains and builds on its national and international pedigree and touring record. Touring highlights include, Venice Biennale, Tanzplattform (Germany), Barbican Theatre, Europe, Canada and Australia.

The Farm is driven by a desire to connect to anyone, from dance and theatre virgins to aficionados and professionals. Often described as cinematic, our work is based on universal subjects and themes that matter. Finally and perhaps most importantly, The Farm create contemporary performances that transcend expectations of what dance can be and how and where it should be viewed.

Cockfight was developed by members of The Farm with guest artist Julian Louis (NORPA). At The Farm work is made in a collaborative process where everyone brings their expertise without being confined to it. All animals are equal.

Directors Kate Harman, Julian Louis, Joshua Thomson and Gavin Webber

Performers Joshua Thomson and Gavin Webber

LX Designer Mark Howett

Sound Designer Luke Smiles

Set Designer Joshua Thomson

Set Consultant Joey Ruigrok

Producers The Farm in association with NORPA and Performing Lines. UK tour is presented by Dance Touring Partnership.


Joshua Thomson

Joshua Thomson

Joshua Thomson is a Performer, Choreographer, Director and Maker. He holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts (Dance) from the Queensland University of Technology. Joshua co-directs Legs On The Wall, a nationally and internationally renowned physical theatre company based in Sydney. His latest co-created work Highly Sprung is an outdoor, large impact, trampoline activation. Highly Sprung premiered in Sydney's Martin Place this year and continues to tour around Australia. For the past 12 years Joshua has worked nationally and internationally across many different art forms with companies such as Tasdance, Dancenorth, Perth Theatre Company, The Farm and PVC – Physical Virus Collective (Germany), Legs On The Wall, Shaun Parker & Company, Stalker Stilt Theatre and Marrugeku. Joshua is one of the founding members of Gold Coast company, The Farm. CockFight, the show that he co-created with other members of The Farm, was nominated in the “Best Ballet or Dance work” category at the prestigious 2016 Helpmann Awards. He specialises in dynamic physical performance work from live theatre to a 48-hour duration work in the ocean.

Gavin Webber

Gavin Webber

Gavin Webber is co-Artistic Director of The Farm, a company based on the Gold Coast, Queensland. Throughout his career Gavin has worked between Australia and Europe and directed theatre, dance, circus, film and installation. He spent the majority of his early performance career with Meryl Tankard and ADT (Australian Dance Theatre) and Belgian company Ultima Vez. As Artistic Director of Dancenorth he took the company from regional Australia to national and international touring and his work has received many awards including six Greenroom awards in a single year. He was co-founder of Collaborative ensemble Splintergroup and Animal Farm Collective, early incarnations of The Farm, whose work has been seen across four continents. He has been a regular guest choreographer with CO:3 in Perth since the company’s launch in 2015. The Farm currently has two shows ready to tour: Cockfight and Frank Enstein, and two in the making, The Last Blast & Quarantine. In 2017 he was awarded the Sydney Meyer Individual Performing Arts Award.

Kate Harman

Kate Harman

Kate Harman is a dancer, performer, choreographer and collaborator who has created and performed in works within the realms of dance, theatre, circus, performative installation and in projects created with amateurs and young people. Her early career was spent as a dancer working for Dancenorth Australia and then later PVCtanz Germany. It was through these companies that she began making work and they have both played a part in nurturing her creative voice. Since 2013 Kate has once again been working out of Australia and focusing her energy on projects with The Farm and developing her solo choreographic practise. She is currently questioning the notion of performance and the idea of authenticity within a performance context.

Julian Louis

Julian Louis is a theatre maker, performer, and is Artistic Director of NORPA (Northern Rivers Performing Arts), a theatre company based in Lismore NSW on Bundjalung country. For NORPA recent shows include Railway Wonderland (site- specific) and Dreamland (site-specific), along with The Bloody Bride and Engine and Not Like Beckett. He also conceived/commissioned My Radio Heart a mixed abilities music theatre work, Open House a circus work in a house, and The Home Project which was presented at the Prague Quadrennial Festival of Space and Design. Julian was Artistic Director of Sydney based theatre company State of Play; a Graduate of Charles Sturt University BA Theatre/ Media, National Institute Dramatic Arts (NIDA) Directors Diploma and trained as a performer in London with Philippe Gaulier.

Mark Howett

Mark Howett studied Theatre Design 1981, at Yale University. The Rakes Progress 1983 for Opera Australia was his first significant production. He has worked as a lighting designer, video and set designer for international productions and as a director for film and theatre. West End Lighting Credits: Evita 2014, Cabaret 2012, A Country Girl 2010, Three Days In May 2011, Dreamboats and Petticoats 2009 & 2013 and A Daughter is a Daughter 2009. His awards include Helpmann Award for Cloudstreet 2002 for Lighting Design; Helpmann Award Best Presented Concert for Kura Tunga, Australian Arts Orchestra, 2005; Greenroom Award 2006 Best Lighting Design for The Love of three Oranges, 2004, Opera Australia; Greenroom Award 2009 for Roadkill, Splintergroup, 2009, Lighting Design. Mark was Coordinator of Lighting Course at the Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts, Edith Cowan University from 1996 to 2000.

Luke Smiles

Luke Smiles has developed a unique rapport among choreographers & directors in the development of soundtracks for dance & theatre. He was nominated for a Helpmann Award (2013) for Best Sound Design (Windmill Theatre – School Dance). Working under his business name motion laboratories Luke has composed and produced soundtracks for many Australian and International artists & companies. Various credits include: G (Australian Dance Theatre), Double Think (Byron Perry), Glow (Chunky Move), Underground (Dancenorth), I left my shoes on warm concrete and stood in the rain (Gabrielle Nankivell), P.O.V. (Lee Serle), Infinity (Rambert Dance Company), Roadkill (Splintergroup), The Maids (Sydney Theatre Company), PUBLIC (Tamara Saulwick), Fugitive & School Dance & Girl Asleep (Windmill Theatre Company).

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Originally commissioned by NORPA and supported by DanceNorth, Townsville; the Centre for Contemporary Arts, Cairns (COCA); Arts Queensland and the Australia Council for the Arts, and toured by Performing Lines. The Farm is supported by the Gold Coast City Council. UK tour is funded by the National Lottery through Arts Council England and presented by Dance Touring Partnership. Photos by Darcy Grant and Kate Holmes

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