Mike Elliott is the Artistic Director of TYC and has been working for the company for the past ten years. After graduating high school, Mike studied a Bachelor of Creative Industries, majoring in Theatre at James Cook University. During his studies, he played a role in Louis Nowra’s 'Summer of the Aliens'. In 2010, Mike joined the ensemble cast of Scott Wit's 'Macbeth' at JUTE Theatre and starred in Ben Ellis' 'Falling Petals' directed by Victoria Carless for Pop Robot Theatre. Along with facilitating TYC's weekly & holiday drama programs, Mike directs the company's MainStage Production program. Productions have included George Orwell’s, ‘1984’ (2014), 'Macbeth Re-Arisen by David Mence (2015), Bram Stokers 'Dracula' (2016), ‘Lord of the Flies’ by William Golding (2017) and ‘Picnic at Hanging Rock’ by Joan Lindsay (2018). He also facilitates the inter-school 'OTSIC' improv competition (2016-present), TYC's FRINGE (2018-present) & Platform Youth Theatre Festival (2017-present) along side the TYC Creative Team. He has also performed in (2016-2017) and directed (2018-2019) TYCs Mainstage Production of ‘Wishfly’ written by Jane Modric. Mike is extremely passionate about young artists and performers realising the power of their own potential in creating exhilarating theatrical experiences!
Leigh Boswell is the founder and Chairperson of The Young Company. Leigh completed a Bachelor of Arts (Drama) and a Bachelor of Education (Secondary) at the Queensland University of Technology where she graduated with Honors, and continued on to study a postgraduate degree in Creative Industries (Arts and Cultural Management). She was a part of the Australia Council for the Arts Leadership Program from 2017 - 2019 and was also nominated to be part of the Commonwealth Games, Queens Baton Relay. Leigh has been an Executive Board Member at Backbone Youth Arts and Youth Arts Queensland in Brisbane, as well as JUTE Theatre in Cairns. Leigh has worked for organisations such as QPAC, deBase Productions, Brisbane Powerhouse, Metro Arts, Brisbane City Council as well as a number of youth arts festivals including Out of the Box, Stage X Festival, The Two High Festival, Visible Ink Festival, Sheila’s Shorts and many more. She has been involved in drama education for over twenty years in both the United Kingdom and Australia. Leigh has worked with students from pre-prep right through to university level, where she was a tutor and lecturer at James Cook University in the field of Education. She is a registered member of the Queensland College of Teachers and has taught at a number of primary and secondary schools throughout Cairns. She also resided on the Senior Drama Panel for QCAA. Leigh has been performing on stage since the age of 3 and has completed examinations with Trinity College of London and local Cairns eisteddfods as well as performing with the Cairns Choral Society and backstage with the Rondo Theatre.
Hayley Gillespie is an Artist in Residence for our Holiday Drama School Programs. Born in London in 1972, Hayley Gillespie relocated to Cairns in 1996. She has been a professional artist since 1989, in a variety of guises. From theatre and set design, artwork for London Council and Royal Park's, and designing and decorating children's furniture for the exclusive retail stores of London. In Australia she has worked in painted advertising, brochure design, signs and murals. Deciding to concentrate on canvas in 2003, she has drawn inspiration from her own childhood in 1970`s, Australia`s colours and lifestyle, and the iconography of both. She has a live model who comes home from school everyday, full of material which is incorporated into her work.
Amber Grossmann is an Artist in Residence at TYC. Amber is a teaching artist, playwright, director, performer, and long time lover of overalls from the Cairns Region. The Performing and Visual Arts have been her life long passion. Amber's work in theatre aims to facilitate greater youth involvement and opportunity for young creatives in regional and remote locations. Her primary areas of interest are playwrighting, directing, and facilitating projects that inspire young artists to follow their passions. Amber has worked with some of Queensland's leading theatre companies; including The Young Company Theatre, JUTE Theatre Company & Queensland Theatre.
Emily Ayson is an Associate Artist at TYC and has been working for the company for the past four years. Emily has been a student at TYC for over seven years, performing in our Theatre Lab Ensemble and Spotlight Troupe. Also starring in countless productions across the wider community; Godspell (St Andrew’s Catholic College, 2018), High School Musical (St Andrew’s Catholic College, 2020), Knowing Me (Overall Arts, Jute Theatre 2020), and ‘Ms Hannigan’ in Annie (St Andrew’s Catholic College, 2022). Also working with Queensland Theatre in multiple programs; Theatre Residency Week NQ 2020, Theatre Residency Week NQ 2021, Student Pathways Program 2022, Theatre Residency Week NQ 2022 and The Scene Project. She was recently awarded Encouragement in Performing Arts Sponsored by Cairns Choral Society, at St Andrews Catholic College. Also recently worked on her first film as a background actor in Wizards!.
Trinity Cook is an Associate Artist at TYC. Trinity is enthusiastic about The Arts and is looking forward to sharing this enthusiasm with young performers. Trinity has participated in many productions across Cairns; Cyberbile (St Andrews Catholic College 2021) and starred as ‘Miss Hannigan’ in Annie (St Andrews Catholic College, 2022). Trinity took drama through her entire school journey and was awarded an Excellence in Drama in 2022 at St. Andrews Catholic College. She has also recently been recognised by QCAA for her fresh reimagining and performance of Medea.
Rhys Tomasich is an Associate Artist at TYC. Rhys has participated in several programs throughout his time with TYC including the Impro Troupe, the Drama Club and various School Holiday programs. Rhys participates in TYC’s Creative Pathways program mentoring our younger participants in both weekly workshop programs as well as School Holiday programs. Rhys is also currently a member of the Film and Impro Troupe Ensembles.
Georgia McCarthy is a TYC Senior Mentor. Georgia has been with TYC for over 7 years, she has been involved in our Theatre Lab program, rose through the ranks through our Drama Club, Drama Studio, Acting Troupe and Theatre Troupe. She is in COE drama at Cairns High, performed in many different shows and she has worked and interned at TYC for 3 years. Georgia is currently a member of the Spotlight Extension program most recently having performed in the Mainstage production “After Once Upon A Time”.
Tyson Sterling is a TYC Senior Mentor. Tyson has been with TYC for over 8 years, he enjoys acting and helps kids with their acting capability. He is a part of Theatre Lab and Theatre Troupe, and he has been interning and working at TYC since 2018. He has also done many other drama related things outside of TYC, such as Fiddler on the Roof and Matilda the Musical at St Monica’s and St Augustine’s.