Tobias Manderson-Galvin is unstoppable
The Age

Playful, thoughtful, scattered, indulgent, and gloriously obnoxious…
Absolutely irresistible.

Daily Review

Embarrassing, abhorrent, and dangerous
The Herald Sun

Tobias Manderson-Galvin is a performance maker, artist, and writer based in Naarm / Melbourne.

He has worked in a wide variety of contexts; notably his continuing work as Co-Director General of climate activist performance company Doppelgangster, and as artistic director of Melbourne’s MKA. His work includes contemporary performance, dance, live art, installation, text projects, and critical writing. His recent endeavours include collaborative project The Midnight Horrors, and production house Desperate Measure.

His practice routinely troubles the capitalist myths of scarcity, stability, and freedom; the responsibility of authority; and the potential of performance as a site of political action.

Manderson-Galvin has presented widely in the context of performing arts, eg:

– the role of the young wolf for Queensland Ballet’s Sleeping Beauty, aged 11 (1996)

– the subject of investigations by the Australian Federal Police, due in no small part to some bad performance poetry (2004)

– temporary public infamy playing a satirical mash-up of Ad*lf H*tler and David Hasselhoff, in Tom Doig’s Hitlerhoff (2008-09)

– unforgiving tabloid coverage of political thriller The Economist – an agitprop response to the Utoya Island massacre (2011)

– touring with Doppelgangster to COP21, inc. an ineffective protest piece at the COP Expo at Paris’ Grand Palais (2015)

– performing Nobody Special a show for one audient at a time with sibling Kerith Manderson-Galvin (2023)

Manderson-Galvin’s performance work has been presented by: RCC (Adelaide), MTC’s NEON Festival (Melbourne), BNE Powerhouse’s World Theatre Festival (Brisbane), Chapter Art’s Experimentica (Cardiff), Art Gallery of NSW (Sydney), Provocare (Melbourne), WinterWild (Apollo Bay), Site2/Safle2 (Aberystwyth), Off-the-Shelf (Sheffield), Blue Room’s Summer Nights (Perth), Hot!Hot!Hot! Climate Arts Festival (Melbourne) et al. His work has been shown in Singapore, the USA, and across Australia, Europe, and the United Kingdom.

Manderson-Galvin has collaborated with companies and artists including: Black Lung Theatre & Whaling Firm, Chelsea Hickman, Sisters Grimm, Side Pony Productions, Balletlab, Les Foules, Tom Doig, Lûmé, and Tenfingerz Productions.

Manderson-Galvin’s work has been supported by Sheffield Theatres, ArtsHouse Melbourne, Aberystwyth Arts Centre, Sheffield Hallam University, La Générale Paris, Canberra Youth Theatre, National Young Writers Festival, Crack Theatre Festival, You Are Here Festival, many independent venues and organisations, and various state, local, and national arts councils in Australia and the UK.

Manderson-Galvin’s play ‘The Economist’ was published in 2012 (Playlab). His debut play for MKA  ‘Dogmeat’ (2010/2014) is a part of MKA’s AUTOCANON series; compiled in 2015. His performance text for ‘Everybody Loses: The Death Diary of Dr Karl Patterson Schmidt’ has been available from Sheffield Hallam University since 2017. His’ writing has been awarded the RE Ross Trust Playwrights’ Prize (2012), and the St Martins National Young Playwriting Award (2009).

His work as a producer and arts manager was awarded – together with MKA colleague Glyn Roberts – with a 2012 Green Room Award for Special Contribution to Independent Theatre; winner of an inaugural national ArtsHub Award for ‘MKA: Theatre of New Writing – Season One 2011’, and they were noted in the ’21 Hot Young Theatre Makers’ of 2013 by Crikey’s Daily Review. MKA has been the nominee and recipient of a number of Green Room Awards.

Manderson-Galvin holds a Master of Writing for Performance from the University of Melbourne’s Victorian College of the Arts (2013). In recent years he has periodically held a visiting artist position at Sheffield Hallam University’s School of Stage and Screen.

Artist C/V

photograph by Wildhardt