Triple Threat? Be Our Guest

One of Australia’s leading Musical Theatre stars, Rob Guest OBE (pictured), passed away suddenly in October 2008 at the age of 58. In recognition of his achievements in the musical theatre industry, a memorial fund was established in his honour to help emerging young performers in musical theatre: The Rob Guest Endowment.

The Rob Guest Endowment is intended to help a current artist in the musical theatre genre gain the performance experience, media training, guidence and public image to help them become a leading artists in the Australian Musical Theatre Industry. For the last 2 years, it has been awarded to an emerging musical theatre performer selected by a panel of industry experts. This year, the judging panel will consist of five luminaries of the Australian Musical Theatre world: Jon Nicholls, Roger Hodgeman, Peter Casey, Karen Johnson Mortimer and Rob Guest’s partner Kellie Dickerson.

Artists interested in applying for this Award may do so by submitting their CV and headshot to the Rob Guest Endowment Committee by FRIDAY JULY 15, 2011. 

Applicants must be

  • Between the ages of 18 and 30 as of 1st August 2011
  • An Australian Citizen

The competition is open to artists who are currently performing in a professional show/have had past professional experience as well as those who are emerging from drama schools, music schools, dance schools and university courses.

30 applicants will be shortlisted, and have the chance to attend a live audition in Sydney. This ‘semi-final’ stage will occur on Monday 22nd August, allowing artists currently performing in shows across the country to attend the live audition on their ‘day off’.

An open dance call, vocal audition and possible acting workshop will whittle the competition down to just six finalists. These lucky six will have the chance to work with this year’s judges, a leading director and a choreographer in preparation for their performances at the finals (otherwise known as the Rob Guest Endowment Concert) on Monday 10th October, 2011 alongside Australia’s most respected and renowned musical theatre performers.
Through these events, the cause hopes to build a supportive community for upcoming musical theatre artists and a strong reputation around the Award finalists who will be recognised as leading artists for the future.

The finalists for the inaugural year were Danielle Matthews, Sarah Bakker, Daniel Belle, Zack Anthony Curran, Ross Hannaford and Laura Page and all six have subsequently worked in professional engagements. Danielle Matthews, the winner of the inaugural award has traveled to study internationally and is fast becoming known for her selfless charity work and as one of the great voices in music theatre.

The finalists from the second year included Sarah Bakker, Nathan Derrick, Bree Langridge, Simon Brook McLachlan and Drew Weston with Francine Cain winning the award. Francine has returned from study in New York and is currently playing the role of Regina in Rock Of Ages.

This year the 2011 prize package includes; a $10,000.00 talent development grant to go toward tuition in Australia or overseas, a media training session, a new headshot package and a guest performance at a nominated industry event the following year. This, together with the exposure from performing at the Rob Guest Endowment Concert and the knowledge gained from working with some of the industry’s leading creative’s provides a not to be missed opportunity for any young performer.

For more information, go to

View the competition brief here: RGE Brief 

View the terms and conditions here: RGE Terms and Conditions 

Erin James

Erin James is's former Editor in Chief and a performer on both stage and screen. Credits include My Fair Lady, South Pacific and The King and I (Opera Australia), Love Never Dies and Cats (Really Useful Group), Blood Brothers (Enda Markey Presents), A Place To Call Home (Foxtel/Channel 7) and the feature film The Little Death (written and directed by Josh Lawson).

Erin James

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