Resident Artists

Sydney Theatre Company has a proud heritage as a creative hub and incubator for Australian theatre and theatre-makers.

Through the Resident Artists, Emerging Writers' Group and CAAP Directors Initiative programs, STC is committed to providing professional development opportunities, access to key personnel and resources, and encouragement and support to pursue interests and projects away from STC. Our Resident Artists also play key roles in the day-to-day artistic life of the Company.

Supported by The Resident Artist Donors


Paige Rattray
Associate Director

In 2019, Paige Rattray will direct Nakkiak Lui's stinging new satire on Australian politics How to Rule the World and Martin McDonagh's ink black comedy The Beauty Queen of Leenane with comedic superstar Rebel Wilson. Paige has previously directed Black is the New White, Power Plays and Boys will be Boys for STC. Other work for STC includes being Dramaturg on The Golden Age, Assistant Director on Speed-the-Plow, Arms and the ManBattle of Waterloo and Travelling North and Director on the script workshops Rough Draft #31: Martyrs and Rough Draft #13: Underland.  Rattray has also directed Scenes from a Marriage and Switzerland for Queensland Theatre.  

Paige is co-founder of independent theatre company Arthur, and was the 2011 Resident Director at Griffin Theatre Company as well as its 2010 Affiliate Director. Paige won Best Mainstage Production at the 2016 Matilda Awards for Switzerland, Best Production at the 2013 VCE Drama Awards and was the recipient of a 2015 Glorias Fellowship and a 2016 Mike Walsh Fellowship. She is a graduate of NIDA.

Further reading

News: Paige Rattray appointed as STC Associate Director
Q&A: Director Paige Rattray on Black is the New White (2018)

Jessica Arthur
Resident Director

In 2019, Jessica will direct the Australian premiere of the international hit Mosquitoes by Lucy Kirkwood and Van Badham's hilariously explicit new comedy Banging Denmark. Previously for STC, she has directed the world premiere of Anna Barnes' new play Lethal IndifferenceRough Draft #32: The Profit by Angus Cameron and Rough Draft #36: Banging Denmark by Van Badham. She has worked as assistant director with Kip Williams on Lucy Kirkwood’s Chimerica and with Andrew Upton (former STC Artistic Director) on Samuel Beckett’s Endgame. In 2017 Jessica was STC's Richard Wherrett Fellow, a position created in memory of the former Artistic Director. 

Jessica’s other directing credits include Intoxication by Christopher Bryant (La Mama Courthouse), Unend by Harry Black for Never Never Theatre Company at Adelaide and Sydney Fringe Festivals, How Are You? by Laura Lethlean for Design Canberra Festival, The Sugar Syndrome by Lucy Prebble for The Kings Collective and Rausch with the guidance of Falk Richter, which led to her to undertake an internship in Germany at the Schauspiel Frankfurt for Safe Places, by Falk Richter and Anouk van Dijk. Jessica also completed a directorial secondment on The Weir by Conor McPherson at Melbourne Theatre Company.

She worked as assistant director with Kip Williams on Melbourne Theatre Company's production of Miss Julie, and Sarah Goodes (former STC Resident Director) on NIDA’s Scorched

Jessica also directed a reading of The Other Place by Christopher Bryant (State Library of Victoria) and Someone by Coin Banks, a music video for Rage and Triple J. She was also dramaturg for Hamlet [Working Title] by David Burrowes and Drew Wilson at the Sydney Fringe Festival, Melbourne Fringe Festival and Design Canberra Festival. 

Jessica holds a Bachelor of Performing Arts (Monash University 2013), including a semester of Theatre and Performance at Leeds University, UK and a Master of Fine Arts (Directing) at the National Institute of Dramatic Art (NIDA 2014/2015). Jessica is co-founder of the theatre company The Anchor.

Further reading

Podcast: Directing Associate Jessica Arthur and actor Emily Barclay discuss Lethal Indifference (2018)


Elizabeth Gadsby
Resident Designer

Elizabeth is a designer with a background in installation and performance art. In 2019, Elizabeth will work on Kate Mulvany's new adaptation of Schiller's Mary Stuart, Lucy Kirkwood's Mosquitoes and Nigel Williams' stage adaptation of William Golding's Lord of the Flies. Previously with STC she has worked on Lucy Kirkwood’s The Children, Nakkiah Lui’s Blackie Blackie Brown: The Traditional Owner of Death, Patrick White’s A Cheery Soul, Ayad Akhtar’s Disgraced, Angela Betzien'sThe Hanging, Colm Tóibín's The Testament of Mary, Caryl Churchill's Cloud Nine, and Moira Buffini's Dinner. 

Her other theatre design credits include Faust: part one, Cloud 9, and the musical Woyzeck for NIDA; Bach Coffee Cake with the LBC for London Handel Festival 2013, BREMF 2014, Newbury Festival 2016, Petworth Festival 2015; Much Ado about Nothing for Sport for Jove; Epic Fail for PIAF and W.A Ballet; Ecobots and Plain Jane for Buzz Dance Theatre and Awesome Festival; The Old Maid and the Thief and The Impressario and The Bernstein Mass for the Sydney Conservatorium of Music; Costume design for The Boat People by the Hayloft Project and Rock Surfers; Cinderella for Belvoir St Theatre; Cut for Adelaide Fringe and Edinburgh Fringe 2015; A Rabbit for Kim Jong-il for Griffin Theatre Company; Orfeo ed Erudice for Spectrum Now Festival; Fly Away Peter and An Index of Metals for Sydney Chamber Opera.

She has undertaken international artist in residence positions at ArtLab San Servolo; Galerie der Kunst and took part in Underbelly at Carriageworks in 2007 and 2008. She is a recent recipient of an Australia Council Art Start Grant, a William Fletcher Scholarship and is a current resident in the City of Sydney’s Creative Living Work Space program.

She holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts from the National Art School and a Bachelor of Dramatic Arts from NIDA.

Further reading

Video: Elizabeth Gadsby takes us on a behind-the-scenes tour of her set for The Children (2018)
Podcast: Elizabeth Gadsby discusses her design for Disgraced (2016)


Shari Sebbens
Richard Wherrett Fellow

The Richard Wherrett Fellowship is a career pathway opportunity for emerging and developing directors. 

Shari is a proud Bardi, Jabirr-Jabirr woman born and raised in Darwin. At 19 Shari was one of ten young artists chosen for “SPARK”, the Australia Council for the Arts first theatre mentorship program. In 2006 she was accepted into Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts (WAAPA) where she completed the certificate 3 course in Aboriginal Theatre. At the end of the year she was accepted into NIDA, graduating in 2009.

Previously for STC, Shari has appeared in The Battle of Waterloo directed by Sarah Goodes, Black is the New White (2017 & 2018 return season) directed by Paige Rattray, The Bleeding Tree (Griffin Theatre's production presented at STC) directed by Lee Lewis and A Cheery Soul (2018) directed by Kip Williams. Other roles include A Hoax for La Boite/Griffin Theatre; Radiance and Back to the Dojo for Belvoir Theatre; Octoroon for Queensland Theatre Company. In 2019, Shari will be performing in Our Town for Black Swan Theatre Company. 

Shari is a proud and 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. TV appearances include Redfern NowThe Gods Of Wheat Street and 8MMM Aboriginal Radio for ABC; Warwick Thornton’s feature The Darkside; the web-series Soul Mates; Foxtel's first feature Australia Day; Matchbox Pictures The Heights; comedy The Let Down 2; Feature Top End Wedding. Other film appearances include Thor:Ragnarok and the lead in Teenage Kicks.

Shari is the recipient of the Graham Kennedy Logie Award for Outstanding New Talent (2012).

Further reading

News: Announcing Our New Richard Wherrett Fellow 

Sue Smith
Patrick White Playwrights’ Fellow

Sue Smith is the current Sydney Theatre Company Patrick White Playwrights’ Fellow, which is a position for an established playwright whose work has been produced professionally in Australia. 

Sue Smith is a multi-award winning screenwriter, playwright and script editor. Her first stage play Thrall, was produced by Tamarama Rock Surfers in 2006 and her professional theatre debut, Strange Attractor, premiered at Griffin Theatre in 2009. Sue also wrote the libretto for Rembrandt’s Wife, which premiered at the Victorian Opera. Her adaptation of Tolstoy’s The Kreutzer Sonata premiered at the State Theatre Company of South Australia to rave reviews. Her play Kryptonite was produced by Sydney Theatre Company and State Theatre Company of South Australia in 2014 and was nominated for Best Play at the 2014 Sydney Theatre Awards. Her play, Machu Picchu, starred Lisa McCune in the 2016 program for the Sydney Theatre Company and State Theatre Company of South Australia, and her newest play Hydra is under commission with Queensland Theatre. Sue’s screen credits include co-writer of Saving Mr Banks; MABO; Bastard Boys; Peaches; RAN; Temptation; The Road from Coorain; Bordertown; The Leaving of Liverpool and Brides of Christ.

Further reading

Find out more about the Patrick White Playwright’s Award and Fellowship


The STC Emerging Writers’ Group is an initiative aimed specifically at emerging playwrights. Now in its second year, the Emerging Writer’s Group aims to encourage the next generation of Australian playwrights, supporting their professional development, expanding skill sets and helping them discover and hone their own distinctive voices.

Discover more and meet the writers


The CAAP Directors Initiative is aimed at unearthing, nurturing and developing Asian Australian directors for the stage. Working with Contemporary Asian Australian Performance (CAAP), in partnership with Queensland Theatre and Melbourne Theatre Company, Sydney Theatre Company is offering a two-year tailored training program for selected participants.

Discover more and meet the directors