Home' LOTL : November 2006 Contents KRISTINA
Kristina Russell of MUSE Hair is the winner of the inaugural
YEN/ Pantene Young Woman of the Year Awards 2006
for hairdressing. Unveiling the results from over 220,000
votes registered at the official website, the Awards
acknowledge the accomplishments of young
women from all over Australia who achieved
amazing feats in categories ranging from
Business, Community, Fashion, Film, Music,
Sport, Hairdressing, Design, and the New Face
of the Year. The Awards celebrate young female
leaders across many different professions.
This network of women will act as mentors
for the next generation. “As a lesbian I felt
empowered to be involved in an awards
evening celebrating the achievements of
women, with the aim to raise our profiles
within our many industries,” Kristina
told LOTL”To win the first ever YEN/
Pantene Young Woman of the Year has been an amazing
recognition of my contribution to hairdressing, and an
opportunity to be elevated to greater opportunities in a
Karen Therese has
carved out a name for
herself in biographical
usually in collaboration
with video and sound
artists. You might have
seen her in the recent
Constellations at PACT
Youth Theatre and at
The Performance Space
as part of Mardi Gras. Passionate about creating performance,
Karen believes “theatre and art impact on people in positive
ways. Creating new contemporary performance that relates
to an immediate social and political need is what drives my
work. The type of work I like to do opens up the space for
people to have a dialogue about their own experiences. I’m
also passionate about creating highly collaborative community
work that gives other artists opportunities – so you’re fostering
notions of ‘community’. Currently employed as Community
Cultural Development Artist with PACT Youth Theatre, Karen
is collaborating on Gathering Ground, which began as
‘Gathering Words’ – a small scale project working with young
people from the Redfern area. “After researching, talking
to young people – specifically the Aboriginal community, I
realised there was a lack of opportunities for young Indigenous
artists to make work. After going to The Block, I realised
how little I knew about the area. Tracey Duncan, the CCD at
Redfern Community Centre had started her role at the same
time as me. Tracey and I decided to create Gathering Ground
together. PACT and RCC were lucky to get the support of
ArtsNSW and Performance Space to get the ball rolling.”
They also created Step Up, a mentorship program specifically
for young and emerging Indigenous artists now creating work
for Gathering Ground. It’s an important initiative for these
times and, in particular, for Sydney as a site for performance.
”We see The Block as an important cultural icon and an
important part of our national history,” says Karen. “The Block
is currently under serious threat by developers – and with
this potential threat comes a loss of a unique indigenous
cultural urban community. Through Gathering Ground, we’re
raising awareness of these issues – at the same time trying
to invigorate young leaders by supporting and organising
art protests as a way to express their feelings about what is
happening with their community, their land and their future.
Sydney audiences need to be aware of how important this site
is. Rather than being afraid of this part of Sydney, audiences
can be challenged and enlightened by its unique culture
and untold stories. “Gathering Ground gives the audience
the chance to be inspired by The Block and the community,
by being taken on a tour around the site. Audiences will
hear stories, see video work, acrobatics, music – all presented
as a kick ass, site specific performance extravaganza. ”
And it’s free.
Gathering Ground, presented by PACT Youth Theatre
November 16, 17, 18. For more info visit pact.net.au
Who are you? I’m an international fencer about
to fence sabre for Australia at the Commonwealth
Fencing Championships in Ireland. I do a lot of fencing
specific training but I also don’t mind a bit of kung fu
and yoga on the side.
What are you best known for? I asked a friend to
answer this for me. She said: “Loyalty to the people
you love and determination to live your life with truth
How long have you been a lesbian? I first became
aware of it as an option when I was about 13 or 14 and
a friend of mine started sending me Xena fan-fiction stories.
Things just started to make more and more sense after that (i.e.
why I’d been the only girl on an all boys under elevens rugby
team and why I played Danny Zucco instead of Rizzo or Sandy in
the year 5 production).
Best/worst part of being a lesbian? Best: Women. Worst:
I don’t enjoy the stereotyping that often goes with it.
Since a young age you’ve been...? Fencing and travelling.
I’ve been fencing now for ten years and it has taken me
to a number of interesting places (Turkey, China, Hungary).
However, the travel bug was instilled in me young. I took my first
round the world trip, for seven months, with my parents when I was nine. I’ve lived in
France, England and the USA and have plans to move to Italy in the near future.
If you were an animal you’d be? A panther.
In five years’ time you’ll be...? A published author and an Olympian.
Woman in the world you most admire? At the moment I’d say Pink. I saw her live
recently just outside Venice and she’s absolutely incredible… strong, a powerful voice,
and totally hot.
Where can a girl buy you a drink, and what’ll it be? I’ll have a Corona at the
Newtown Hotel thanks… or maybe an Ultra Violet if and when the Bank ever
Photo: Anja Schuhmann
Photo: John Stanton/WireImage.com
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