The Antipodean branch of the London-based theatre consultancy launched on the 1st
of September 2015, and follows the opening of the company’s New York studio in
2012 and Bristol Studio earlier this year.

Leading the Australian business is Eric Lawrence, Melbourne resident and long-term
Charcoalblue associate, who has worked with the team on the RSC Courtyard,
Chicago Shakespeare Theatre and the forthcoming Astana Expo 2016.

He extends a warm welcome to anyone visiting or passing through Melbourne to the
Design Studio, which is based at 104 Johnston Street, Suite 4A, Fitzroy.

“We share our building with a film co-operative in Fitzroy,” says Lawrence. “There’s
great coffee, decent wifi and our local bar is the wonderfully named ‘Naked for
Satan’! Pop in for a pint if you dare!”

Supporting this global growth is Gary Sparkes in Charcoalblue’s London studio, who
is promoted to Chief Operations Officer, managing resourcing and commercial
administration across the company’s four design studios.

“Gary’s years of experience managing the complexity of the technical departments
at the National Theatre has stood him in great stead for managing our global
growth. And in recognition of his talents, Gary has also been offered a partnership
role in the business,” says Charcoalblue’s Managing Partner, Andy Hayles.

Sparkes comments: ”I’m thrilled to have been made a partner and proud to be
leading such an innovative and talented team of designers across our studios – and
to be part of an inspiring global management team.”

Sparkes joins Katy Winter as the additional second partner at Charcoalblue.

“As Gary’s focus broadens, we are similarly proud to announce that our senior
consultant Paul Crosbie is promoted to UK Studio Principal,” Hayles continues.
“Leading the business development of our London studio, Paul continues to innovate
and inspire our team as he develops new opportunities in commercial development
and the tech industries for our unique brand of Theatrical Innovation.”

Crosbie comments: “I’m delighted to be given the opportunity to lead our UK studio
head-on into the next iteration of an ever-evolving marketplace. At Charcoalblue we
have always prided ourselves on innovation, and as we look to the future and
broaden our offer we’ll be re-invigorating our approach, getting our hands a bit
dirtier and allowing our enthusiasm to shine through even more than usual.”

Hayles concludes: “I’m sure everyone will join us in congratulating Eric, Gary and
Paul on their new appointments. Alongside Our US studio Principal John Owens,
Byron Harrison leading our acoustics design service, and Ian Stickland heading up
our digital design we now have a winning senior team at the top of their game. It’s
a privilege to be working alongside such talented team players.

“These exciting changes will allow us to support projects around the world as well
as maintaining our dedication and passion for grass roots theatre here in the UK.”