10 Questions – Kris Stewart, artistic director, Brisbane Powerhouse

Brisbane Powerhouse artistic director Kris Stewart steps up to answer InQueensland Summer Reading’s 10 questions.

Did anything good come out of 2020?

Absolutely. I think we feel closer to other arts companies in Queensland than we have ever felt before, especially arts venues in the regions.  Situations like this remind you more of the things that you share then the differences you have.  Plus, I kind of enjoyed travelling less. It was fantastic having this amount of time at home – plus we could afford to recarpet the house!

What’s your favourite Christmas memory?

There are three that leap to mind. One was getting an Incredible Hulk costume when I was five. Second was when my wife’s and my families all went away overseas, to a country where Christmas wasn’t such a big thing and we could genuinely have a holiday. The third was going back to Adelaide to see my family a few years ago when it was 40+ degrees every day, and buying a child’s wading pool that I could laze in with a good book and some beers.

Are you a summer or a winter person?

In Brisbane, I am a winter person. When we lived in Tasmania, I was a summer person.

How do you stay resilient during periods of change, like the year just gone?

It helps to remember that it’s not just you, that often what you’re going through is being shared by a lot of other people. I also find anxiety feels very noisy to me; allowing myself times of quiet is really important.

Who were your heroes of 2020?

Yaron Lifschitz, whose company Circa reopened Brisbane Powerhouse weeks before any other venues were open again. I also think, no matter your politics, Australia has been very well led over the last year.  Probably those who were making decisions on all levels have to now be considered heroes, for the amount that they did right.

Your secret ambition?

Probably to be a writer, though I just don’t think I have the discipline for it. It’s probably part of a long list of things I’d like to have done, but I’m not sure that I’d actually like to do.

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Favourite end-of-year holiday spot?

I think Christmas and the New Year is really gorgeous in Hobart

What are you hoping for next year?

For things to seem boring and predictable.  That’d be a lovely change.

Hot Christmas dinner, or cold?

The only absolute non-negotiable of Christmas dinner is roast potatoes, cooked in duck fat. I’m only allowed them twice a year because, to be honest, they’re a bit much to have too often!

People/businesses to watch in 2021?

Cenote Casa in Woolloongabba – I think the idea of an inner-city relaxing oasis is only going to get more and more popular.

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