NIDA acknowledges the Traditional Owners and Custodians of the lands on which we learn and tell stories, the Bidjigal, Gadigal, Dharawal and Dharug peoples, and we pay our respects to all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Elders past and present.

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Shari Sebbens moves into directing as Richard Wherrett Fellow at STC

NIDA acting alumna Shari Sebbens has been appointed Sydney Theatre Company’s new Richard Wherrett Fellow as an emerging director.

NIDA alumna Shari Sebbens (Acting, 2009) has been appointed Sydney Theatre Company’s new Richard Wherrett Fellow as an emerging director.

Photo: Shari Sebbens (Credit: James Green)

Through its resident artists program, STC is committed to providing professional development opportunities for artists, access to key personnel and resources, and encouragement for professional development. STC’s Resident Artists also play key roles in the day-to-day artistic life of the Company and work closely with Artistic Director Kip Williams (Directing, 2010).

Several NIDA alumna have been part of the Fellowship program, including Jessica Arthur (Directing, 2015), Paige Rattray (Directing, 2009), Imara Savage (Directing, 2008) and Lee Lewis (Directing, 2005).

'It is an incredible honour to be a part of a company that is shifting and stretching and not shying away from the necessary conversations and actions required for cultural growth and I’m thrilled to be a part of that,' Shari Sebbens said.

'I’ve worked with the Sydney Theatre Company as an actor for a few years now and as an Aboriginal artist I’ve been thrilled by the choices they’ve made in producing Indigenous work. Their investment in my development as a director is also an investment in the future of Indigenous storytelling on our stages. It’s nice to be a part of a company that understands you cannot talk about Australia’s cultural identity without Indigenous people at the table.'

STC Artistic Director Kip Williams said: 'I am looking forward to working closely with Shari as she develops further as a director over the following 12 months. We are all excited to have her incredible mind contributing to the artistic life of the company.'

Shari is a proud Bardi, Jabirr-Jabirr woman born and raised in Darwin. She is a passionate advocate for Indigenous theatre especially the development of new and contemporary works. In 2011 Shari was cast in her first film role of Kay in The Sapphires. In 2012 Shari starred in the world premiere of La Boite/Griffin Theatre’s production of Rick Viede’s A Hoax; she played the role of Julia in Redfern Now for ABC, and one of the leads in the ABC series The Gods Of Wheat Street. In 2017 Shari returned to film with the role of Mother in Thor:Ragnarok and Foxtel’s first feature Australia Day playing leading role of Sonya Mackenzie. She performed the remount of The Bleeding Tree followed by Black Is The New White, both at the Sydney Theatre Co (STC) and then to Queensland Theatre Co’s An Octoroon. 2018 saw Shari return to television with regular role of Leonie in Matchbox Pictures The Heights, Feature Top End Wedding, the return of Black Is The New White (STC) and A Cherry Soul (STC). In 2019 Shari is performing in Our Town for the Black Swan Theatre Company. Shari is the recipient of the Graham Kennedy Logie Award for Outstanding New Talent (2012).

To register your interest in studying Acting or Directing at NIDA in 2020, go to

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