Thursday, August 24, 2023


Mackay and Whitsunday Life

Artist In Residence Jason Inspires Students

At Educational Workshops

Esteemed theatre professional, actor, producer and renowned director Jason Klarwein spent a week with students at the St Patrick’s College Mercy campus in Mackay recently as an Artist in Residence.

The accomplished thespian conducted educational workshops in English and Drama for Year 8, 9 and 10 students that extend skills and knowledge with emphasis on “persuasive speech” and “poetry” and building confidence and empowerment.

These workshops aim to develop student’s technical and artistic talents and provide opportunities to develop high-level skills in this art form.

A native of Cairns, the gifted Klarwein takes his workshops all across Queensland as part of his artistic director role with the Grin & Tonic Theatre troupe.

Grin & Tonic present shows which include Shakespeare aimed at primary and secondary school children and explore issues which fit into the school curriculum.

“Those issues include public speaking and having the confidence to talk in front of an audience,” says Jason.

“We encourage the students to express themselves – by accepting their anxiety to become better communicators” he said.

With his encouraging tone, expertise and upbeat personality the versatile Klarwein has a knack of quickly connecting with students.

Grin & Tonic boasts such luminaries as Geoffrey Rush, David Gulpilil, Jack Thompson, Deborah Mailmain and Bille Brown just to name a few.

Jason also assists with the Brisbane Broncos community program Beyond The Broncos – helping teach former players that are interested in taking up careers in education.

A seasoned theatre performer, Klarwein began his professional career in 1996 with a performance of The Glass Cage as a 19 year old.

Jason appears in the new “Elvis” movie and in Ben Hackworth’s debut feature Celeste which premiered at the 2018 Melbourne International Film Festival.

His television credits include the AACTA winning Foxtel mini series Devil’s Playground; ABC’s Remembers, Summer Love and In Our Blood; Network Ten’s Cybergirl; the final series of Sea Patrol on Channel Nine and the FOX8 series Slide.

By Chris Karas

Renowned Queensland actor Jason Klarwein engages with students during his educational workshops at St Patrick's College Mackay last week

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