The company identifies diverse emerging artists and arts workers seeking to advance their practice-pairing them with established artist mentors and producers to develop, scope, resource and produce their work, supporting long term career pathways. This program drives and informs our Major Works, offers an aspirational vehicle for our Community Access participants, and places a flagship ensemble with a fresh outer urban voice in the broader Australian and international performing arts sectors.

Associate Artist Program

Fakaoho Tupou MUSICIAN / VOCALIST

Blending Māori and Pacific Islander influences with her love for Gospel and Hip Hop, Fakaoho Tupou aka Foxy is an asset to any concert or performance. She is a musically gifted singer with a strong following in the Pasifika and gospel community and a recipient of a Hume Art Award. Fakaoho has featured in many Outer Urban Projects works. URBAN CHAMBER BEYOND at the Melbourne Recital Centre, the opening for POETIC LICENSE at the Darebin Arts & Entertainment Centre, LIBERIAN BOY, REVELATIONS in URBAN STUDIO, HUME STUDIOS and TAKEOVER residencies and GRAND DIVISONS – A MOVED URBAN CANTATA at Arts Centre Melbourne, Melbourne Festival.

Fakaoho also performs on Outer Urban Projects’ Fee for Service program, always delighting audiences with her vocal talent, warmth and charisma. Foxy is a key artist on the fourth project of the KIN series of works - The Tupou’s.
Joanne Kaisila WRITER/ MUSCIAN / VOCALIST

Joanne is a proud Fijian-Australian. She is a vocalist and multiinstrumentalist performer – playing guitar, drums and bass. From a young age Joanne developed a passion for gospel and soul music and has performed in many seminal shows for Outer Urban Projects including GRAND DIVISIONS – A MOVED URBAN CANCATA at Arts Centre Melbourne, Melbourne Festival, POETIC LICENSE opening at Darebin Arts Centre and HUME STUDIOS at Kangan Tafe. She recorded on REVELATIONS in URBAN STUDIO, performed in the TAKEOVER residency and is a key artist on the Australian/Fijian collaboration of the transnational performance and film project, KIN - The Kaisila’s – Dudi & Jojo. She is also a videographer, making music clips for her community and is a regular performer on Outer Urban Projects’ Fee for Service program.

Josef Hanna MUSCIAN

Josef Hanna is an Associate Artist. He began playing the violin at the age of 4. He has been playing the violin for 18 years and has recently started learning guitar. Josef was raised and educated in Roxburgh Park. His past teachers include Helge Thelen, Elizabeth Sellars and Roy Theaker. Josef is currently studying under Sophie Rowell.

Josef has been a member of the Melbourne Youth Orchestra (MYO) since 2012. In 2015, he was appointed the position of Concertmaster and has retained the position into 2016.

He has performed at various venues with MYO including Deakin Edge - Federation Square, Iwaki Auditorium, Hawthorn Arts Centre, Windsor Hotel and Melbourne Recital Centre. Josef is currently 1st violinist of the MYO String Quartet. Josef performed in Outer Urban Projects GRAND DIVISIONS, URBAN CHAMBER - BEYOND, LIBERIAN BOY and gigs regularly with Outer Urban Projects and is part of the Outer Urban String Quartet.
Kush Kuiy WRITER

Kush Kuiy loves building new things and transforming it into something impactful and for positive change. In collaboration with the Nuer Community Foundation of Australia and City of Monash, Kush successfully inaugurated Rise of South Sudan in 2018. This annual benefit concert celebrates Melbourne’s vibrant South-Sudanese and wider African populations, highlighting individual artistic excellence and collective creative capacity. She is also the creator of Blaxcellence, a networking platform for Afro Diaspora, First Peoples and black identifying creatives. Kush has worked for Outer Urban Projects as an associate producer and is joining Outer Urban Projects as a writer on the VIGIL project.

Milad Norouzi WRITER / MUSICIAN / PERFORMER

Milad is a rapper, singer-songwriter and performer. Milad’s creative life began in the underground rap studios of Tehran. He joined Outer Urban Projects in 2015 after attending its remount of POETIC LICENSE at Darebin Arts Centre. As a writer/performer/actor he has written and performed in the company's major works POETIC LICENSE at fortyfivedownstairs (2017), GRAND DIVISONS, A Moved Urban Cantata at the Fairfax Studio, Arts Centre Melbourne (2015), LIBERIAN BOY (2018), THE AUDITION (2019) at La Mama Theatre and has recently recorded his moody underground EP THE LITTLE LIONHEART in the company’s URBAN STUDIO.

Natasha Lakkis (nee Hanna) MUSICIAN

Natasha is fast becoming a well-known name in Melbourne’s orchestra scene. The eldest of eight children of a musical family from Roxburgh Park, she began violin at three years of age. In 2014 Natasha was the principal 2nd violinist for the Melbourne Youth Orchestra and collaborated with the Christchurch Symphony Orchestra on their tour to New Zealand. She was violin concertmaster in 2012 & 2013 for Vision Australia's Carols by Candlelight conducted by John Foreman.

For Outer Urban Projects Natasha has performed in URBAN CHAMBER - BEYOND at The Salon, Melbourne Recital Centre, Melbourne Festival, GRAND DIVISIONS - A MOVED URBAN CANTATA at Fairfax Studios, Arts Centre Melbourne, Melbourne Festival, and is lead performer in the Outer Urban Projects STRING QUARTET. Natasha is the lead artist on Outer Urban Projects’ Triple Violin Concerto collaboration with The Impossible Orchestra.
Ruci Kaisila WRITER / MUSICIAN / VOCALIST

Ruci is a musically gifted performer in gospel and soul. From a young age, Ruci, along with her twin sister Joanne, developed a passion for music through singing and performing at their local church. With Ruci on piano and vocals and Joanne on guitar and vocals, the dynamic duo captivated audiences with their soulful ballads. Ruci has featured in many Outer Urban Projects works including GRAND DIVISIONS - A MOVED URBAN CANTATA presented at Arts Centre Melbourne, Melbourne Festival Darebin Arts & Entertainment Centre opening POETIC LICENSE, The Big Anxiety's TAKEOVER and HUME STUDIOS Residency projects, REVELATIONS recording project in URBAN STUDIO and 125BPM Concert, Melbourne Recital Centre.

Ruci worked alongside some of Australia’s finest writers and theatre artists in Anthem, a new Australian work of scale supported through the Major Festivals Initiative, that toured nationally. Ruci works as a performer on Outer Urban Projects’ Fee for Service gigs and workshops and is a key artist and driver of KIN -The Kaisila’s – Dudi & Jojo a transnational Australian-Fijian performance and film work.
Sahra Davoudi WRITER / ACTOR

Sahra graduated in art and architecture at the University of Tehran with a Bachelor of Theatre Art in 2009. Sahra was involved in many student productions as a writer, actor, costume and set designer. Her dissertation thesis was an adaptation of the short story by Raymond Carver - ‘Neighbors’. Her first professional work as an actor and writer in Australia was with Outer Urban Projects dance theatre work, VESSEL at the Arts Centre Melbourne, Melbourne Fringe (2017). She then went on to work as a writer and actor in THE AUDITION, La Mama Theatre (2019).

Sahra was granted permanent residency in 2019 and has since become an Australian citizen. Sahra performed In the Mirror by Mammad Aidani for La Mama Theatre and the interdisciplinary dance work Conquest of the Garden by Nebahat Erpolat. Sahra is a writer/performer in Outer Urban Projects upcoming Major Work VIGIL.
Ta Tupou SONGWRITER / MUSICIAN / VOCALIST

Tangata Tupou aka Ta, began singing at a young age. Born to a musically gifted family, Ta’s passion for music started in the family living room and at her local church. Ta's Cook Island heritage has a huge influence on her style of music. Ta and sister Fakaoho have been performing together for many years. Both artists learned how to play musical instruments and sing from their dad. She is an independent vocalist, performing with sister Fakaoho and cousins, Ruci, Joanne, and Emmanuel Kaisila. Ta is a recipient of a Hume Art Award.

She has featured in many Outer Urban Projects works including GRAND DIVISIONS - A MOVED URBAN CANTATA at Arts Centre Melbourne, Melbourne Festival, opening of POETIC LICENSE Darebin Arts Centre, TAKEOVER and HUME STUDIOS residencies, REVELATIONS recording project in URBAN STUDIO. Ta performs on Outer Urban Projects’ Fee for Service program, astonishing audiences with her sublime voice. Ta is a key artist on the fourth project of the KIN series of works - The Tupou’s.
Emmanuel Kaisila Vocalist

Emmanuel is the youngest of the talented Kaisila family. He is also musically gifted through his family roots in gospel and soul. From a young age, Emmanuel, along with his twin sisters Joanne and Ruci, developed a passion for music through singing and performances at their local church. The trio captivate audiences with their soulful ballads. Emmanuel’s work with Outer Urban Projects includes 125 BMP, Melbourne Recital Centre, HUME STUDIOS, TAKEOVER residencies, and the upcoming transnational performance and film project, KIN.

Kevin Nugara Beatboxer / Rapper

Kevin an Australian Sri Lankan virtuosic beatboxer and rapid-fire rapper from Meadow Heights, Hume, has worked with members of the Outer Urban Projects team from 2004. Kevin has been worked on hundreds of gigs, festivals and events throughout Melbourne, many through Outer Urban Projects’ Fee for Service Platform. He has opened for rapper Kid Ink (US), performed at number of Croc Festivals, performed in the Big Top Hop – Commonwealth Games cultural program and has toured with Indigenous Hip Hop Projects across regional and remote Australia. 

Kevin won ‘best rapper’ in the Kool Skools Awards (2005) and in 2009 he held the title of National Beat Box Champion. He is a recipient of the 2014 Hume Arts Award for Emerging Artists category and performed in Outer Urban Projects, POETIC LICENSE in Melbourne Writers Festival at Footscray Community Arts Centre (2014), Darebin Arts and Entertainment Centre (2015) and fortyfivedownstairs (2017).
Damian Seddon Dancer

As an Associate Artists of Outer Urban Projects Damian performed in the company’s Major Work, VESSEL (2017), is a regular workshop instructor for Dance Alliance and performed in Hume Studios (2019). In 2017 Damian was chosen from a large pool of auditionees to become a cast member for Sir Matthew Bourne’s adaptation, Lord of The Flies, Art Centre Melbourne, State Theatre (2017). Damian independently secured a scholarship to attend Wildabeast in the United States – a convention and workshop geared to commercial dance industry. Damian recently completed the TAKEOVER Residency in partnership with RMIT and collaborators over 5 years resulting in a number of public reactivation performances in response to COVID-19 and the publication of the book ‘Art-Based Social Enterprise, Young Creatives and the Forces of Marginalisation’ by Grace McQuilten, Amy Spiers, Kim Humphery and Peter Kelly (Palgrave Macmillian 2022).

Damian recently completed the TAKE OVER Residency in partnership with RMIT and collaborators over 5 years resulting in a number of public reactivation performances in response to COVID-19 and the publication of the book ‘Art-Based Social Enterprise, Young Creatives and the Forces of Marginalisation’ by Grace McQuilten, Amy Spiers, Kim Humphery and Peter Kelly (Palgrave Macmillian 2022).
Karla Hanna MUSCIAN

Karla Hanna is an Associate Artist. Karla is a Lebanese-Australian born in Melbourne Victoria. She is a professional violinist with extensive experience in performance and teaching for over 20 years.

Karla has worked as a freelance musician, performing with orchestras such as the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, Orchestra Victoria and the Melbourne Chamber Orchestra, as well as working regularly with different Chamber groups around Australia. She studied at the Australian National Academy of Music from 2015-2017 and am currently in my final year of a Bachelor of Music.

During her time with the Melbourne Youth Orchestra, she collaborated with Outer Urban Projects on various occasions and am looking forward to performing with two of my siblings in an upcoming project which will involve a recording of Olli Mustonen’s triple violin concerto with a small orchestra.

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