Goodbye Greg Clarke: New Fringe Director from 2016

“My contract is coming to an end,” says Clarke, “and despite the Adelaide Fringe Board asking me to continue in the role, I felt it was time to move on.”

After five years in the role, Adelaide Fringe Director and Chief Executive Greg Clarke is hanging up his spotty suit. But don’t despair – Clarke has given us a long time to get used to his departure, as he will see out the 2015 season. “My contract is coming to an end,” Clarke tells The Adelaide Review, “and despite the Adelaide Fringe Board asking me to continue in the role, I felt it was time to move on. “I tend to do things in five-year blocks and I feel like it’s the right time to move forward on to the next adventure.” This new adventure will see Clarke moving back to Sydney, but he hopes to continue his arts partnerships in Adelaide. “Although I will be based in Sydney I plan to work on a range of arts projects both nationally and internationally,” he says. “Hopefully those projects will enable me to continuing working with a number of artist and colleagues I have had the pleasure of working with here in Adelaide.” As for who’s next, Adelaide Fringe is starting with a “blank sheet of paper”. “No preconceptions,” says David Minear, Adelaide Fringe Chair. “As a Board, we are very open-minded.” The board is expecting to receive applications from local, national and international hopefuls. Finding a replacement is no small order, with the Fringe listing the many skills and traits required. “It’s important to remember that the Adelaide Fringe is a sizeable business,” Minear begins. “So primarily we need a person with strong business, leadership, financial and organisational skills. “However, we are also looking for someone who understands the business of creativity, who understands it from an artist’s and producer’s perspective. Someone who can also add a healthy dose of creativity, new ideas, new initiatives and a sense of fun.” Minear concludes: “The successful person will be encouraged to, in fact, expected to, put his or her fingerprints all over the next three years of the Adelaide Fringe and possibly beyond. “Some people don’t like change. But the nature of the Fringe is that it requires and demands change. “Our new CEO/Director will well and truly understand that.” As for parting words from Greg Clarke – and keep in mind he isn’t actually leaving until mid-2015 – he says, “I’ve seen countless weird and wonderful shows and have had experiences that I have never had before. I really encourage audiences to do the same, take a risk and go and experience something new at next year’s Fringe.”

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