Disabled actor and theatre maker Kate Hood, blind writer and critic Olivia Muscat and able-bodied writer Emilie Collyer have a wide-ranging conversation about disability, opportunity and the arts sector
Kate Hood Olivia Muscat and Emilie Collyer
Kate Hood is the Artistic Director of disability-led theatre company, Raspberry Ripple Productions. She was an able-bodied actor for many years, performing across theatre, musicals, film and TV (Prisoner). She became a wheelchair user over a decade ago and reinvented herself as a disabled actor and theatre-maker. At the same time she kept one foot in the mainstream, working extensively as a voice-over artist, performing regularly at the Words in Winter Festival and winning awards for her audio book narrations for Bolinda Publications. She is a founding member of Actors Equity's Diversity Committee, Co-Chair of the Performers with Disabilities Committee and sits on the board of Arts Access Vic. Olivia Muscat writes about disability and the arts. Her work has appeared in the anthology "Meet Me at the Intersection", at the Emerging Writers’ Festival, and on various places around the internet. She is included in the upcoming "Growing Up Disabled in Australia". In 2019 she was awarded an Arts Access Victoria Lesley Hall scholarship to work on her novel for younger readers. Emilie Collyer writes plays, prose and poetry. Her writing has appeared in Overland, The Lifted Brow and Aurealis, among others. She has two collections of short fiction published with Clan Destine Press. Recent plays include Contest (Malcolm Robertson Prize), Dream Home (Patrick White Shortlist and seven Green Room nominations) and The Good Girl (Melbourne Fringe Writing Award) which has played in New York, Hollywood and Florida. Emilie is a founding member of Punctum and New Working Group and also works as a dramaturg, mentor and creative writing teacher.