They said she was crazy: Kate Champion. Photo: Supplied
Kate Champion has announced her resignation as chief executive officer and artistic director of arts company Force Majeure.
Having premiered her first Force Majeure work at the Sydney Festival, Champion will close the curtain on her 12-year tenure at the same festival with the company she founded in 2002 as director of Nothing To Lose, which premieres in January.
Champion, who has worked as a dancer, teacher and rehearsal director, said she was extremely proud of what she had achieved in her time with the company.
"When I started out, so many people said I was crazy trying to start a dance theatre company in Sydney because it's expensive, there isn't funding," Champion said. "I'm really glad I stuck to it and I think if you do really have a strong vision and you don't listen to the naysayers and get other people on board, it's incredible what you can achieve. It's not easy creating it from scratch."
Although she will not finish officially until October next year, Champion said she will be "resigning, not retiring" knowing she gave it her all.
"It is sad but it's also equally as exciting, I've done everything that I have set out to do and it's good to leave these situations on a high," Champion said. "I think it's part of the creative instinct to seek new challenges, to shake things up and go outside the comfort zone."
Champion's last major production with Force Majeure, Nothing to Lose, is based around a fascination with the "fat body" and aims to abandon stereotypes by incorporating larger actors with minimal clothing into the performance.
It is the culmination of Force Majeure's decade-long artistic investigation into contemporary life and a production Champion described as a "frontier" for herself individually.
"It's been extraordinary," Champion said. "Big-bodied people are usually the minority, but to see them all in a room together, in a safe space and comfortable; it's contagious and incredible to watch. It's something I haven't been able to work with as a director and choreographer before."