Published: Wed, Nov 28 2018
Posted in Media Releases

Pictured above: Marcus Canning, retiring FRINGE WORLD Chief Executive; Hon. Mark McGowan MLA Premier of Western Australia; FRINGE WORLD Festival Director Amber Hasler. Photo: Robert Frith – Acorn Photography 

After 17 years leading Artrage, the company behind the FRINGE WORLD Festival, Marcus Canning is retiring at the end of the 2019 FRINGE WORLD Festival.
“After seventeen years leading Artrage’s development and growth, the time is right to step aside and welcome the next Chief Executive to this amazing organisation,” said Canning.
Winner of the 2017 Western Australian of the Year Award in the Arts and Culture category, Canning has been the CEO of Artrage since 2002. Over his time with Artrage he has driven the development and launch of the FRINGE WORLD Festival, Rooftop Movies, The Bakery live music venue and Girls School Creative Precinct which is hosting a large program during the upcoming FRINGE WORLD Festival.
Established in 1983, Artrage is one of the longest running, largest and most successful not-for-profit cultural organisations in Australia. Since launching the FRINGE WORLD Festival in 2011, the Festival has been rapidly grown to become the third largest in the world in terms of tickets sold and is recognised as having transformed the cultural life of Perth and its vibrant summer festival season. 
“My time with Artrage has been a fantastic adventure and I’m extremely proud of everything that the team and I have accomplished and the positive impact we have made,” said Canning. “When I started with Artrage I was a 28 year-old with a love of Perth and its potential. I could never have foreseen how the organisation would evolve and grow over the coming decades and the difference we would make.”
Canning is retiring from Artrage on the 17th Anniversary of his appointment to focus on The Rechabite development, an entertainment complex that is being built in a heritage hall on William Street in Northbridge on the edge of the Perth Cultural Centre. The Rechabite is scheduled to open in September 2019 and is being developed in partnership with Adrian Fini.
“I’m pleased that I’ll still be in the hood and look forward to The Rechabite hosting Fringe shows in future years,” said Canning. “I’m also looking forward to getting some of my own creative projects back on the front burner, but for now I’m mostly looking forward to this next Fringe program. It’s hands down the best we’ve produced yet, it’s going to be a great summer.”

Canning leaves the organisation in a strong position with healthy reserves, long term funding and sponsorship partnerships secure and a fantastic team in place excited to work with a new CEO.
“The entire team is looking forward to meeting and working with the new CEO later in 2019 after what is shaping up to be the absolute best Fringe yet,” said Fringe World Director, Amber Hasler.
The search for a new Artrage and FRINGE WORLD CEO is being driven by Kingston Human Capital and is being promoted locally, nationally and internationally.
“This is a fantastic opportunity for a cultural leader with energy, enthusiasm, experience and some entrepreneurial zeal,” said Artrage Chair, Anthony Robinson. 
“We are casting the recruitment net right across the world as we believe leading Artrage and the FRINGE WORLD Festival with this fantastic team in this fantastic city will be attractive to the world’s best and brightest. We encourage local cultural leaders who can see themselves making a future with the Fringe to also apply.”
Further information about the recruitment is available at 

The full 2019 FRINGE WORLD Festival program is on sale now at  

The Festival will be officially opened by Hon. Mark McGowan MLA Premier of Western Australia on 17 January 2019. FRINGE WORLD 2019 runs from 18 January to 17 February. 


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Jo Hos
FRINGE WORLD Festival Marketing Director
M: 0430 552 962