Circa, Australian Contemporary Circus Company, is excited to welcome Criena Gehrke as Group Executive – Strategy and Impact.
Criena is an exceptional arts leader who joins the Circa Team after five years as CEO of HOTA Gold Coast. She has been Executive Coordinator, Arts and Culture, City of Gold Coast after working in Victoria in the youth arts and disability sectors. Criena was instrumental in developing the Gold Coast’s culture strategy and helped oversee the Arts and Cultural Program of the 2018 Commonwealth Games.
Yaron Lifschitz, Circa’s Artistic Director said “I am delighted to be working with Criena. She has been a mentor, friend and employer and I have benefited greatly from her wisdom and attitude. She adds heft to our executive team and positions us to take advantage of the opportunities in Brisbane, Cairns and beyond.”
As Group Executive – Strategy and Impact, her duties include leadership of key Circa strategic initiatives – including Circa Cairns, Circability and Circa Academy, creating new strategic initiatives with a special focus on engagement programs and the Olympics and bolstering Circa’s Executive by supporting and leading strategic planning and stakeholder and brand management.
Circa Chair Michael Lynch AO CBE says that “Criena joining is a major coup for Circa. I am confident her joining the leadership team will help us ensure that Circa keeps extending what is possible in circus. We are thrilled to have her joining us for our exciting challenges ahead in 2023.”
Criena says “I am beyond excited to be returning to my first love, the performing arts, with one of Australia’s most dynamic and celebrated companies. Yaron and Circa’s vision moves beyond pushing the boundaries of contemporary circus.There is a genuine and urgent commitment to circus and the arts as a force for change, inclusion and diversity. Circa is everything I believe in – great artists doing great things. It is a huge privilege.”