Tania Chambers receives honorary doctorate from ECU

Edith Cowan University has awarded producer Tania Chambers an honorary doctorate in performing arts.

The uni, which houses the WA Screen Academy and Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts (WAAPA), recognised Chambers due to her “dedication and commitment to the film, television and arts industries” over a 35 year career.

In a speech to students on Saturday, the Feisty Dame Productions MD spoke of how the creative industries are the intersection of technology and the arts; science and culture, business and creativity.

She also talked of the value of mentorship, and referenced Goethe in saying “boldness and commitment has magic in it. Be Bold.”

Tania Chambers at the graduation ceremony.

Across her career, Chambers has worked variously as both an executive and creative, including as chief executive of both Screenwest and Screen NSW, and other roles at Barron Entertainment, the Film Finance Corp. and as a lawyer for the ABC in Sydney. She founded Feisty Dame Productions in 2012, with her credits including the recent How to Please A Woman as well as Itch, A Few Less Men and Kill Me Three Times. She’s also been an EP on One Fine Day, High Tide, Dark Whispers, A Shared Affair and Tango Underpants.

Further, Chambers is a producing partner with Steamworks Arts Company, and has served as chair of the Media Reconciliation Industry Network Group, the Perth Theatre Company, the Film and Television Institute (WA), and the WA Screen Industry Diversity Leadership Group. She has also been a council member and vice president of Screen Producers Australia, a board member of the WAAPA Advisory Board, Screenrights and Ausfilm, and a member of a number of committees including the Western Australian Screen Industry Advisory Group and the Perth International Arts Festival. In 2016 she was awarded an Order of Australia Medal (OAM) for her service to the arts, and to the film and television industries.

Chambers was just one of just three recipients to receive an honorary doctorate in this round of graduations, and the only one from the screen industry sector. Previous recipients include Tim Minchin, Jack Thompson and Don McAlpine.

“Tania is very deserving of this award, for all she has done for the WA Screen Academy and WAAPA students at ECU as a tutor, mentor and inspiration,” WA Screen Academy director Cathy Henkel told IF.

“It’s also in honour of her contribution to the screen industry in WA and nationally, and her work in promoting women and people from diverse backgrounds.”