Wesley Enoch, Artistic Director, Queensland Theatre Company

Never believe your own propaganda ...

As Artistic Director of the Queensland Theatre Company, Wesley Enoch spends a lot of time travelling. Weekends can be filled with trips interstate to discover the theatrical creations the rest of the country has to offer. Looking forward to a trip overseas in December, Wesley’s enthusiasm for soaking up as much arts culture from around the world as possible is a distinct plus to the strength of his productions at Queensland Theatre Company. A playwright and director, Wesley has a long history of working in theatre, having been the Resident Director at Sydney Theatre Company, Artistic Director of the Ilbijerri Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Theatre Co-operative and Associate Artistic Director at Company B at Sydney’s Belvoir Street Theatre. Originally from Stradbroke Island, this master storyteller is a proud Noonuccal Nuugi gentleman, weaving many an indigenous story into his repertoire. Wesley returned to his hometown of Brisbane in 2010, taking the reins at QTC, where this month he delivers two shows within a week of each other. The world premiere of Managing Carmen by renowned playwright David Williamson runs October 13 to November 4. The second, Up The Ladder (October 24–27), will showcase the next generation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander performing artists through an inspiring story of one man’s triumph over adversity. The Weekend Edition caught up with Wesley to discover his weekend essentials.

How do you like to start your weekend?
Often with a flight. A lot of my time is spent seeing shows, in Brisbane during the week, and often flying to different cities all around the country on the weekend.

What’s your favourite thing to do on a Saturday morning?
I like to get online and read the newspapers, particularly the arts sections, and then I go out and buy the physical newspapers and read them. I like getting up and knowing what’s on and what’s around. Then I usually select a few things to do, little guilty pleasures like seeing a really bad movie.

How do you like to unwind?
With friends, I like to cook for friends. The most people I’ve cooked for is about 45. I like to cook for lots of people – it could be 14, 20 or 45. I don’t get to cook for myself very often, so I like to have people over.

What are your essentials for a well-spent weekend?
Friends, some form of theatre or film or a visit to an art gallery. Something where I go to see what other people are doing. Reading a good book. It sounds a bit dorky but cleaning is big on the weekend. I like the idea of getting organised. Shopping for food, thinking about what I might be eating in the next week.

What’s something you’ve been meaning to do on the weekend but haven’t got around to yet?
Go house hunting. I keep saying that I want to go house hunting. Often to do something I want to do, I have to plan it all out during the week, which never happens.

What’s your favourite thing to do on a Sunday evening?
Watching a DVD at home. I’ve got a collection of more than a thousand. I enjoy that sense of choosing a DVD or a TV series, sitting down and watching something. Along with a very simple meal of dumplings or something like that.

What are you looking forward to next weekend?
To a really successful season of Managing Carmen, which opens on October 13.

What are you reading at the moment?
I must admit it’s scripts for plays more than anything else. I’m also dipping in and out of Benjamin Law’s The Family Law.

What inspires you?
I love watching other people achieve things. Like watching the Paralympics was amazing. Watching people achieve incredible things. Watching performers go forward. I always get inspired by other people’s toil.

What was your childhood dream?
I was going to be a teacher. That was my big career dream. I wanted to work in schools and work with young people. Though when I was 15 or 16, I had the ambition to run the Queensland Theatre Company. I didn’t know what running it would entail, but that was definitely one of my dreams early on. 

What has been your greatest achievement?
The one yet to come. The problem with people like me is you’re never satisfied. The greatest achievement is the one you haven’t done yet. I’m constantly looking forward to bigger and better things.

What is success to you?
Success is a balancing act. Success isn’t achieving the best in my career; it’s in equilibrium between work and personal life. Being able to be a real person.

What are your words of wisdom?
Never believe your own propaganda. Always question things. A friend said that to me in a crowded foyer once, while we were celebrating my latest achievement.

Only a local would know … where Cloudland used to be.

Perk up …
Relax … New Farm Park
Dine … Logan Road in Woolloongabba
Indulge … Chocolate To Die For, Brisbane City
Shop … Paddington Antique Centre
Catch-up … The Gunshop Cafe, West End
Be inspired … a walk along the Brisbane River


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