Community artist and community cultural development leader
Phil works as a community artist and community cultural development leader. He works extensively across Melbourne and Victoria with people with a disability, people living with mental illness and in community singing.
Phil is the founding Artistic and Executive Director of Wild@heART Community Arts, a position he has held since 2002. Wild@heART is one of Australia’s leading community arts organization creating accessible and inclusive community arts making with people with disabilities and mental illness. Phil leads a creative team to provide opportunities for music, songwriting, singing, film making, dance, event management workshops and performance events.
Phil has led the Bipolar Bears rock band for people living with mental illness since 2000. The band is well known in the mental health scene around Victoria, including a 3 part documentary series on SBS1 TV in 2010.
Phil has also worked extensively as a musician, video artist, event manager and facilitator over the past 15 years. Phil has led many workshops in singing, song writing and music, film and music video clip making, event management and technical production.
Phil consults with local government and non-government disability organisations on strategies to create more inclusive community arts practice and participation. He has taught project design at Victoria University and regularly supports community development students on placements with Club Wild. He also works as a consultant with disability arts organizations including Arts Access and Deaf Children Australia.
Phil also runs and directs the 80 voice Melbourne Mass Gospel Choir with performances at The Famous Speigeltent, Vodafone Arena, Federation Square and many festivals. In 2011, Phil developed the Gospel Songs Of Bob Dylan show with the choir and is currently working on an Aretha Franklin show. He also leads gospel singing workshops and trains soloists and singing leaders across Victoria.
Phil has recently come back from a study tour of Black American gospel music in the USA, further developing his skills and networks in gospel music and community singing. Phil also established connections with USA disability and mental health related arts organisations for potential international collaborations.