PIAF Blog

Meet Rod Vervest

Monday 14 November 2016

His childhood playgrounds were dry river beds and railway yards but today the whole of the South West is Rod Vervest’s playground, which explodes with art and inspiration each year when PIAF’s Great Southern rolls into town. Get to know our Great Southern programmer in his 15th year on the job.

Where did you grow up?

In the Wheatbelt town of Moora, WA.

How did you begin working in the Arts?

Running events and workshops at my music business as a way of promoting handmade instruments.

What is the local arts scene like in Albany?

Vibrant and interesting. Many artists are making great notes, words and pictures. It is a rich and rewarding arts scene.

What does a program manager at PIAF do?

Everything! My job moves from suit and tie negotiations to tearing gaffa at a gig. My position is not focussed around one particular arts genre – it takes in the entire workings of a program, which of course involves working closely with the Artistic Director and all the other program managers.

What has been your favourite Festival moment in the Great Southern?

That is a tough question! Most recently, probably A Filetta – the amazing Corsican vocal ensemble. They had passion that could make you weep and an intensity and technical control that was breathtaking.

How is the Festival received in the Great Southern?

With bells on!

How have you seen the region change since the first Great Southern Festival?

The Arts is very much about the business of change and transformation of place to me. And that is a process we are in and hopefully always will be in. The region is constantly evolving and deepening its engagement and interest in the Arts. PIAF has been a major player in that shift by providing the natural ingredient for positive change – inspiration.

Something about the Great Southern that not many people know:

Albany's rainfall is lower than Perth.

If you could bring any artist to the South West, who would it be?

Yo-Yo Ma.

Program Manager: Great Southern Festival

Written By Rod Vervest

His childhood playgrounds were dry river beds and railway yards but today the whole of the South Coast is Rod Vervest’s playground, which explodes with art and inspiration each year when PIAF’s Great Southern rolls into town. Keep an eye out this Festival for our Great Southern programmer in his 15th year on the job.