Artistic Directors Neil Armfield And Rachel Healy Get Extended Tenure Until 2023
The Adelaide Festival Board has announced that it has extended the tenure of Joint Artistic Directors Neil Armfield AO and Rachel Healy. This represents the second contract extension for Armfield and Healy taking their total tenure through to and inclusive of the 2023 Adelaide Festival.
With this announcement, they become the Festival's longest serving Artistic Directors overseeing seven Festivals from 2017 to 2023. The greatest number of Festivals directed by anyone previously was Anthony Steel who directed five Adelaide Festivals.
The duo have established reputations of excellence for their ability to find the greatest work in the world and welcome artists from across the globe to the Adelaide Festival. Their highly anticipated debut program in 2017 saw the Adelaide Festival achieve its highest box office in history, which they then went on to beat in 2018. The 2019 Adelaide Festival is 22% ahead of last year's festival, at the same time and currently 24% of ticket sales are coming from interstate.
Corporate growth and philanthropic support have also increased significantly throughout Armfield and Healy's tenure. Sponsorship from corporate partners has increased by 46% since 2016, whilst philanthropic support has experienced massive growth with a 505% increase over the past 3 years. Over the same period, the Festival's overall turnover has risen from $12.5 million to $18 Million - an increase of 44%.
"The 2019 Adelaide Festival already exceeded our expectations with sell-out shows and a box office record prior to the Festival even opening," said Adelaide Festival Chair Judy Potter. "Neil and Rachel possess the rare ability to deliver programs that not only have enormous heart but that also deliver stunning box office results. The extension of their tenure will ensure that Adelaide remains amongst the leading arts festivals in Australia and around the world," Ms. Potter said.
"What an extraordinary privilege it is to continue our relationship with Adelaide Festival until 2023. We are so fortunate to work within an organisation that supports our creative vision and to work with the Adelaide Festival Board who trust us with one of the world's greatest Festivals. We are supported by generous corporate partners and benefactors who not only provide financial backing, but who allow us to share the best the Adelaide Festival has to offer. We have also been energised by the ongoing support of our State Government in trusting our vision and sharing our belief in the transforming energy of the arts." said Mr. Armfield and Ms. Healy.
The Adelaide Festival runs from 1-17 March and includes 70 events across music, opera, dance, film and visual arts events alongside Adelaide Writers' Week and WOMADelaide events.