Many of Australia’s key arts buildings are converted spaces: Sydney Theatre Company’s home is at the Wharf… the Griffin Theatre Company’s home is in an old horse stables… The Pram Factory Theatre… Belvoir… (the list goes on an on…) and one of the key buidlings in South West Sydney is Casula Powerhouse Arts Centre.

The Casula Powerhouse is one of the many key arts buildings in Sydney’s west – Riverside Theatres (Parramatta), Campbelltown Arts Centre (Campbelltown), Blacktown Arts Centre (Blacktown) and Bankstown Arts Centre (Bankstown) – providing art experiences, development and residency opportunities for performing and visual artists.

And it is now under threat.

Many of you know I work at CPAC. Like so many that have come before me, I join the ranks of arts workers who experience first hand the daily impact an arts centre can have on the lives of local artists, residents and children – especially of those from a CALD background. In the last year the powerhouse has hosted nearly 70,000 visitors through a range of events and activities – festivals, exhibitions, performances, residencies, education programs – hosting local, national and international artists and award winning art.

It is now under threat.

The Federal Government has forcibly acquired the Parklands outside of the Powerhouse to build the intermodal. And you can find more about that here: And you an read Kiersten Fishburn’s response here:

Today I head to Casula – not to head up into my office – but to stand amongst my colleagues and friends who have worked at the centre as artists, actors, technicians in a show of solidarity to say “I value this building – the house it has provided for all who come here to reflect on their lives, experience a personal transformation, to share and develop skills…”

Over the past few weeks it’s been tough to argue how much the building of the Intermodal on the doorstep of CPAC will affect the over all experience of patrons coming to escape their daily grind and engage in inspiring art experiences at an iconic and important place like Casula Powerhouse Arts Centre. One morning in my email inbox there was the most beautiful gesture by artist (and previous fellow Shopfront Board member) and current CPAC Theatre tech David Kirkpatrick – and I just want to share it with you… because it made my heart sing!

Today at 12noon there is a rally at Casula Powerhouse Arts Centre (done in true Arts Centre style – performances, speeches, food, music)

For me this is not about my job. This is a bigger symbolic and philosophical gesture.

This rally is about celebrating and valuing art, saying that the community deserves an arts centre not choked by diesel fumes…

If you can’t make the Rally today: please sign the petition below to show your support for the arts in Western Sydney: