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Our Team. We believe it is our role to foster in young people a desire to explore, discover, invent and learn different ways of performing and provide opportunities for them to do so. 

Annette Carmichael SEC-Nic_Duncan-058.jpg

Photo credit: Nic Duncan


Annette is an award-winning choreographer and creative producer who is nationally renowned as a leader of artistic teams that create large-scale performances. With an enduring commitment to the health and vitality of regional communities, Annette’s previous projects have been applauded for their collaborative approach in building strength and resilience. She has created performances that feature dance, theatre, skateboarding, rollerskating, textiles, original music and visual design. Her works have been performed in major theatres, complex outdoor sites, regional halls, basketball courts and one very famous skatepark, The Snake Run.

Most recently, Annette collaborated with ecological organisation, Gondwana Link, First Nation elders, artists and scientists to create The Stars Descend – a dance project that was performed across a 1000km wildlife corridor in southern Western Australia, in March / April 2023.

As an Arts Manager, Annette has worked for West Australian Ballet, Perth Festival, STRUT dance, Ausdance WA, Regional Arts WA, Circuitwest, PAC Australia, STEPS Youth Dance Company and Buzz Dance. Locally she has worked for Denmark Arts and Vancouver Arts Centre. She is a graduate of West Australian Academy of Performing Arts (BA Arts Man. 1996).

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Photo credit: Nic Duncan


Megan has been a Southern Edge Arts employee since 2018 when she joined the organisation as the Finance Officer before becoming General Manager in 2019.  With a background in hospitality and retail management, not for profit administration and qualifications in bookkeeping and accounting she has overseen the financial management and arts management of SEA for 6 years.

Alongside managing the delivery of SEA’s annual programs including Healthway sponsored Act Belong Commit Arts workshops, youth devised performances & community engagement programs during this time she been the project manager for 16 productions and community arts projects including; DLGSC funded The Ballad of Penelope and Marlin (2021), The Tanks(2021/2022) and My Money Matters(2022/2023), outdoor community performance Elemental (2020) and four annual Living of the Edge festivals consisting of 12 youth devised original works.

Megan is passionate about creating opportunities for young people to access the arts, as a former ‘SEA kid’ in the late 90’s she knows firsthand the positive impact participating in arts can have on a young person.

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Photo credit: Nic Duncan


Cassy has been a circus performer for 25 years. She literally ran away to join the circus in 2011, attending the National Institute of Circus Arts for formal circus and aerial arts training. Cassy currently performs and produces work for small local events as well as large productions such as Perth International Arts Festival Journey of the Giants.
With a vision that SEA is a place where creative people are told “Yes!” no matter their age or ability. She strongly believes that circus is for everybody and every body. Cassy is often dreaming up the best ways to get members crazy ideas onto thestage.

Outside of SEA, Cassy enjoys fossicking op-shops, exploring beaches, and playing
with dogs & on trampolines (although not often together). Cassy delights in sharing her creativity and passion with young people, inspiring them to express themselves through the performing arts.

Jackson Burrell SEC-Nic_Duncan-048.jpg

Photo credit: Nic Duncan


Jackson joined Southern Edge Arts as a student in 2022 after moving to Albany in the same year, soon stepping into aerials classes in a teaching role. Coming from a background in capoeira, circus and community mental health work, Jackson brings with him an embodied understanding of flexibility, strength and skill based training as well as experience in act creation, performance and knowledge sharing. This has been afforded by training under many experienced teachers from Ancestrais Capoeira, Circus WA, The Circus Centre and most recently the Let It Flow meeting in Sicily.

Jackson seeks to combine person centred, body positive and mentally healthy approaches in his tutoring to find creative ways to empower his students in whatever goals, challenges and questions they bring into the room. As for his own training, you will most likely either find him upside down on the ground or in the air, exploring fun ways to move around that look somewhat like a big worm.

Zak Launay SEC-Nic_Duncan-134.jpg

Photo credit: Nic Duncan


Zak, a teaching artist for more than 8 years, has brought a range of new skills to the members of SEA; his talents in Capoeira (Afro-brazilian dance/acrobatic martial art) and parkour (French street gymnastics, running, climbing and jumping, known as “free running”) have been introduced into the new Street Acro program.

Zak trained for 10 years with the WA Capoeira federation under the teaching of Master Draga and Master Goioere, in many different countries including Brazil. He has also participated in a number of circus training activities including at the Lunar Circus school.

Zak has taught numerous groups of people including refugees, “at risk” youth, and children living in remote aboriginal communities.

His performance career highlights include Southern Art and Soul Festival, Brazil spectacular at Kulcha, Busselton beach festival, Fairbridge festival, Denmark markets, Albany Agricultural show, the Snake Run and the Beauty Index.

Sharni Bracknell SEC-Nic_Duncan-113.jpg

Photo credit: Nic Duncan


Sharni started her circus journey in Canada BC in 2015 where she fell in love with the flow arts and fire manipulation. It’s been many years of learning, training, teaching, and performing fire arts across many festivals and locations across WA. She kept expanding her passion for circus through aerial silk and multi hula-hooping, starting in 2020 at Circus WA and the Lunar Circus Project.

Sharni now runs her own business called “Serpent of Fire”, based around performing arts, women, dance, costuming, and fire. Her favourite project/production thus far was a fire production called “Kaleidoscope”, which she directed, and worked with the beautiful community of SEA.

Having travelled overseas to many places, Sharni never would have imagined she would find her dream job being a circus teacher here in Albany, where she grew up. Southern Edge Arts is by far one of Sharni’s favourite places to be. It’s a place to grow, learn, play, and share in the magic of creativity.


Jodie has a passion for circus and after attending classes at Southern Edge Arts became a teacher herself. Not long into her time with SEA Jodie discovered circus was in her heritage... back in the early 1800s, Louis Sentinella, one of Jodie's ancestors in Naples, Italy, was a circus performer who travelled and performed throughout Europe! Jodie's love for circus led to her creating SEA's Little Squircus classes to share circus basics and developmental benefits with the little squirts - kids aged 2-5 yrs. In Mt Barker, Jodie also runs the Wriggle, Giggle, Grow program at the library and previously she was a former Happy Feet presenter for 3 years, which was a dance/fitness class for 2-5 yr olds. Jodie is a dedicated board member at SEA and a loving mother of 4 children, and each of her little squirts have attended SEA.

Kore Ford SEC-Nic_Duncan-024.jpg

Kore was born and raised in Albany, and first became involved with Southern Edge Arts as a child through the Hip Hop and Puppetry workshops. They joined Southern Edge Arts as a volunteer stage assistant in 2019 until 2021, before joining the office team as an Admin Assistant in early 2022.

Since joining the staff team, Kore has discovered a love for circus and aerials, mainly training in fire manipulation, aerial trapeze, aerial lyra, and sword spinning using lightsabers.

Photo credit: Nic Duncan


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Anne Sorenson has been empowering young people through the performing arts in Western Australia for over 30 years. With a strong physical theatre and group devised methodology, Anne has used theatre as a community engagement tool, a research methodology, for performances and for health promotion. Anne has produced and directed youth arts projects creating performances with disengaged youth, former refugees, first nations youth and with young emerging artists. The high
quality of her work has attracted a number of awards and award nominations across a variety of sectors and she has published journal articles and research reports about using theatre as a tool for social change. Anne has been for the AD at SEA for seven years and has overseen the delivery of two strategic plans, sixteen productions and two festivals. She teaches the Actors Club at SEA and now calls herself an Kinjarling Albany local.


Nelson graduated from Murdoch University and University of Tasmania with a BA Politics and International Studies and a Bachelor of Contemporary Arts respectively. He currently works as a drama tutor at Southern Edge Arts, most recently directing HE@RD  an original contemporary theatre piece examining the process of community consultation and MOON_SHIP 2020, a loose adaptation of Lord of The Flies that explored colonialism and power dynamics within a survival context.

Nelson has exhibited at The Powerhouse Gallery in Launceston and worked with Marina Abramovic at MONA in Hobart, to activate her works. He has co-created a production for Auckland fringe festival (Dead Boys Are Blue) and worked extensively in technical and artist-liaison roles, specifically for Junction Arts Festival in Tasmania and Brave New Works in Denmark WA.

He has acted in numerous productions including The Balcony by Jean Genet, Richard III by Shakespeare and Attempts on Her Life by Martin Crimp.


Leanne is a full time Drama teacher who has been working in schools for three decades. Her teaching practice has been based on the works of Stanislavski, Laban, Artaud, Brecht, Boal and Grotowski. She has a particular interest in contemporary Australian theatre, Aboriginal theatre and Lighting. During 2014 she participated in an exchange program teaching Drama at Glebe Collegiate in Ottawa, Canada, where she was able to extend her knowledge of Improvisation skills.
Her personal strengths include problem solving, critical thinking and Devising Theatre. She has been a regular participant in YOHFest. This Festival uses Drama to explore social issues relevant to young people. Her entries have consistently been selected as finalists, and have been awarded first, second and third place on numerous occasions.
Her passion for the Arts and personal quest for ongoing learning has been a key motivator for searching out guest artists and workshops trainers. For more than a decade she has taken small groups to work with Artists from Melbourne Theatre Company. This has provided her with the opportunity to network with some of Australia’s leading theatre practitioners. As a result, she has been able to bring new skills to the Southwest regional theatre community.


Growing up in Albany, Rachael has always been interested in the performing arts. After finishing high school, Rachael moved to Perth where she joined the amateur theatre group KAFF. In 2000, she successfully auditioned and was offered a place at the WA Academy of Performing Arts (WAAPA). While at WAAPA, Rachael played such roles as the character of Masha in Three Sisters directed by Gillian Jones, Hippolyta/Fairy A Midsummer Night's Dream directed by Chris Edmund, Arabella in The Innocent Mistress directed by Rhys McConnochie, Cerimon in Pericles directed by Kate Cherry, Rosie in The Devils Tunic directed Chris Edmund and Kate in the short film Echoes directed by Julian Argus. Rachael also played Monica in the play Out in the Open directed by Pete Nettell as part of the 2004 Mardi Gras Festival at the Darlinghurst Theatre in Sydney. In 2007, Rachael appeared as Doctor Wallace in the TV series Lockie Leonard.

In 2016, Rachael graduated from University of WA with a Masters of Primary Teaching. She currently teaches in local primary schools. Rachael also sings, plays violin and mandolin with her brother David Rastrick in the musical duo Riverbeats, whose repertoire is an Australian blend of popular music and original songs.


Tristan is a modern day circus strong man. His passion for sports and fitness began in high school where he participated in many local competitions in volleyball, soccer, hockey, cricket, athletics and touch rugby. In 2013 he joined the circus program at Southern Edge Arts and quickly advanced to the performance class – CircaSEA.

Since then he has been training at SEA as well as with other circus professionals such as Vague Du Cirque (France), Chris Mayhew (Perth), Chris & Iris (Netherlands), 360 Allstars (Brisbane), plus more. Tristan’s performance career began with CircaSEA’s Le Cirque d’Evolution, and has grown to countless community performances and in house projects including the WA Circus Festival, Albany Car Classic, Balingup Small Farm Field Day and CircaSEA’s Enigma: Leonardo’s Realm.

An active member of the youth community in Albany, Tristan can relate well to young people, through his passion for both sport and art and his understanding nature.

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