Supporting our commitment to fostering the professional development of Australia’s next directors.

The MinterEllison Future Directors Initiative creates career pathways for aspiring theatre directors, contributing to both Melbourne Theatre Company's ongoing investment in local artists and to the sustainability of the arts sector.

Providing paid placements for assistant directors to work alongside senior theatre directors on a Melbourne Theatre Company production, the Initiative provides an invaluable opportunity for participants to learn about the process of developing productions for large-scale companies, and will encourage fresh, new voices and perspectives to the stories we tell in the future.

Each assistant director will gain practical experience, hone skills and develop relationships which will support taking the next steps in their careers.

2024 applications have now closed.

Read about the experiences of the 2022 MinterEllison Future Directors here.


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Artwork for Keegan Bragg

Keegan Bragg

Happy Days

Keegan Bragg is a director and theatre maker with a Masters of Theatre (Directing) from the Victorian College of the Arts. In 2023 he will be a graduate director with Red Stitch Actors' Theatre's Graduate Program, with whom he completed a directing secondment on Iphigenia in Splott in 2021. He is of Māori/Pakeha descent. Keegan's passion for theatre began growing up in Ōtautahi (Christchurch), New Zealand, and developed through making independent theatre in Pōneke (Wellington). In 2019 he directed Shadow (Edinburgh Fringe Festival) and served as Artistic Director of Long Cloud Youth Theatre, based in Pōneke. With a focus on text-based performance, Keegan's theatre meets modern audiences where they are – staging their horrors and anxieties in an intimate way that feels sleek and direct, and is generous with empathy and emotion. He looks forward to bringing his directing practice to Melbourne and the MinterEllison Future Directors Initiative.

Artwork for Joel Bray

Joel Bray


Joel Bray is a proud Wiradjuri dancer and performance maker based in Naarm. Joel performed with European companies and choreographers and with Chunky Move. Joel’s intimate dance–theatre encounters in unorthodox spaces spring from his Wiradjuri heritage, and use humour to engage audiences in rituals about sex, history, trauma and healing. Joel’s works include Biladurang (Melbourne Fringe); Dharawungara (Chunky Move), Daddy (Arts House/Performance Space), Considerable Sexual License (Yirramboi Festival/Darebin Arts) and I Liked It, BUT (Canberra Civic Theatre/Brisbane Festival), which have toured to the Brisbane, Sydney, Darwin, Midsumma, Auckland, LiveWorks and Dance Massive Festivals and Arts Centre Melbourne. His film work Giraru Galing Ganhagirri was commissioned by the National Gallery of Australia and has since toured extensively. Joel was the 2019 National Library of Australia Creative Arts Fellow, a New Breed choreographer with Sydney Dance Company and was Chunky Move’s inaugural Choreographer-in-Residence.

Artwork for Kuda Mapeza

Kuda Mapeza

Is God Is

With a deep love for the cultural necessity of storytelling, the limit does not exist for Theatre maker, director, actor, performer and musician Kuda Mapeza. She relocated to Naarm/Melbourne, where she has acted in Harry Potter and the Cursed Child (Michael Cassel Group); Emilia (Essential Theatre); Invisible Opera (Sophia Braus/RISING); sensory theatre show When the World Turns (Polyglot Theatre); along with commercial work. Through her experiences as an actor, Kuda became increasingly intrigued by the mechanics behind creating a show, and empowering those who aid in its creation. With Let’s Take Over 2022 (Darebin Arts/Darebin Council) she created, dramaturged, devised and performed her original piece YUKYUH. Kuda also works with Western Edge Youth Arts as a Support Artist/Assistant Director, with credits in the shows Time’s Ticking (2022) and Distortion (2022). Kuda was a recipient of the John Bell Scholarship in 2017 (Bell Shakespeare).

Artwork for Kitan Petkovski

Kitan Petkovski

My Sister Jill

Kitan Petkovski is a theatre director of Macedonian descent based in Naarm. His practice focuses on developing and directing work that experiments with cross-form and queer dramaturgies. Kitan holds an MFA in directing from the VCA. He is the directing recipient of the 2023 Besen Family Artist award at Malthouse Theatre and a panel member of the Theatre Companies Green Room Association Awards. Recent directing credits include Burgerz (Theatre Works); The Gospel According to Jesus, Queen of Heaven (fortyfivedownstairs); Nora: A Doll's House (Herald Theatre); No Ball Games AllowedAlternative Futures (Theatre Works); and The Hall (Festival of Colour, Wanaka). Kitan's production of The Gospel According to Jesus, Queen of Heaven won 2 Green Room Awards for Best Independent Production and Best Composition, and Kitan was nominated for Best Direction. Kitan is the co-founder and creative director of Bullet Heart Club and the Creative Associate at Theatre Works.