The Empire NewsThe Empire News

The Empire Opens Applications for Prestigious Brian Boak Bursary

Brian Boak Bursary Winner, Morgan Carter

The Empire has started the search for the exceptional young artist who will be awarded the highly prestigious 2024 Brian Boak Outstanding Performer Bursary.

The bursary, which is awarded biennially, will see the successful applicant receive up to $20,000 to put towards further study and career development.

The Empire Foundation Chair, Janelle Fletcher said the life changing Brian Boak Outstanding Performer Bursary offered support to the next generation of artists who have already shown exemplary skills and international potential in their chosen fields.

“This bursary is offered by The Empire’s Foundation to provide support to someone wishing to pursue studies or professional development in the areas of acting, dance, singing or instrumental performance,” Ms Fletcher said.

Our past recipients have all gone on to undertake some incredible development projects including our most recent recipient Morgan Carter who is currently studying Opera in Manchester, England at The Royal Northern College of Music

Janelle Fletcher, The Empire Foundation Chair

“Theatre creator and actor, Emily Goddard’s bursary allowed her to study at Ecole Phillip Gaulier in a style that informed her creation of her sensational one woman show, the acclaimed This is Eden, which she is now working towards adapting for television,” she said.

“Australian tenor and 2013 recipient Paul Tabone, worked continuously in Europe, in the role of Piangi (The Phantom of the Opera) on West End, returning to The Empire in 2021 for a performance with local choral singers, Love and Other Lessons and 2022 with Golden Days.

“Other successes we have seen from this bursary include trumpet player and conductor Sam Nester, who completed a composition and performance project and saxophonist Angela Davis, who was able to record an album thanks to the funding.”

The Brian Boak Outstanding Performer Bursary was made possible through the generosity of the late Brian Boak, a theatre enthusiast and strong supporter of both the arts and The Empire in Toowoomba.

Applications for the $20,000 Outstanding Performer Bursary are now open and close Monday 26 February.

The Empire’s Foundation is proudly supported by Bernoth Properties, DP Wealth Advisory, Downlands College, Greenridge Group, Horizon Accounting, Clifford Gouldson Lawyers, The Arbour Boutique Apartments and Wearing Memories.

For more information and to apply for the Brian Boak Bursary, visit

#What’s New

The Empire Launches 2024 ~Thrive on Arts Program~

The Empire’s popular family festival Thrive on Arts will return from September 26-29, celebrating all things nature and the environment.

We are Yuree by Adrian Bauwens

In the lead-up to 2024 NAIDOC Week celebrations, The Empire launched their Reflect Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP) in support of their ongoing commitment to fostering reconciliation in Australia.

 2023 Youth Bursary Recipients

The Empire’s commitment to nurturing and developing young talent in the region continues with the opening of applications for The Empire Foundation 2024 Youth Bursaries.

2024 ~Brian Boak Bursary Winner~ Announced

Following a record number of applications The Empire is thrilled to announce Munich-based Australian multidisciplinary performer, lirico-spinto soprano and actress Christiana Aloneftis as the 2024 recipient of the prestigious Brian Boak Bursary.

IMPACT Junior 2024: Mataya Forster, Eliza Kinniburgh, Chelsea Rogers, Samantha Cheetham, Edward Pocknee, Majella Ford, Minea Tao. Absent: Joshua Walkington

​The Empire’s youngest artists have kicked off rehearsals for their original production, Our Egg Named Larry, to be performed from July 12-13.

John Waters and Daniel MacPherson star in The Woman in Black

The second longest-running play in West End history will premiere on The Empire stage ahead of a national tour.

of country

The Empire acknowledges the Traditional Custodians, the Giabal, Jarowair and Western Wakka Wakka peoples, where we work and present stories. We would like to pay respect to the Elders, past and present and to all First Nations peoples.

Artwork: We Are Yuree by Adrian Bauwens

Empire Theatre