(1984 – 1996), Catherine joined Complicite as Administrator during its second production, A Minute Too Late, later becoming the company’s Producer. In her twelve years with Complicite, she, along with founding actor/directors, Simon McBurney, Annabel Arden & Marcello Magni strategically led the company, producing seventeen of its shows, (A Minute Too Late, Foodstuff, More Bigger Snacks Now, Anything For A Quiet Life, Please Please Please, My Army, Part One, My Army, Part Two, Ave Maria, The Phantom Violin, Help! I’m Alive, The Visit, The Winter’s Tale, The Street of Crocodiles, The Three Lives of Lucie Cabrol, Out of a House Walked a Man, Lamentations of Thel and Foe), touring many of them globally and developing partnerships with co-producers, including international festivals, the National Theatre in London & several commercial theatres in London’s West End. A close partnership with The British Council resulted in regular tours to both subsidised and commercial theatres all over the world, including Australia, USA, Japan, Europe, Hong Kong, Lithuania and South America. Under the Artistic Directorship of Richard Eyre, Complicite was the first independent theatre company to undertake a co-production with the National Theatre, culminating in a total of three: The Visit, by Friedrich Durrenmatt, The Street of Crocodiles & Out of a House Walked a Man, paving the way for other companies to have similar partnerships. Complicite’s self-produced fifteen-week, sell-out season of twelve shows at The Almeida Theatre in London won a Laurence Olivier Award for Outstanding Achievement and was followed by several successful commercial forays into London’s West End with The Visit, The Street of Crocodiles, The Three Lives of Lucie Cabrol and a revival of A Minute Too Late. She also produced the Russian composer, Dimitri Smirnov’s contemporary Opera The Lamentations of Thel at The Almeida Theatre. She forged links with many festivals and co-producers all over the world, including many in Australia where she now lives, resulting in visits by the company with The Visit to The Perth Festival, The Winter’s Tale & The Street of Crocodiles to Sydney Theatre Company & The Sydney Festival & The Street of Crocodiles & The Three Lives of Lucie Cabrol to The Melbourne Festival at the Arts Centre. Catherine was Assistant Producer on two of Complicite’s productions for television; Burning Ambition, a devised TV drama for BBC2, working with Producer, George Faber and as Assistant Producer on Anything for a Quiet Life, an adaptation of the theatre show for Channel 4, directed by Andy Wilson.
After leaving Complicite to have her son, Sam, Catherine worked for three years (1997 – 2000) as Director of The Islington International Festival, a multi-art form festival with a focus on free outdoor and site-specific presentations, alongside a free and ticketed programme in The Famous Spiegeltent on Highbury Fields, of contemporary circus, world music, comedy, poetry events, plus an innovative year round community and education programme initiating arts projects in schools, colleges, and on estates, involving local business expertise alongside local and international artists. Attracting audiences of 120,000, the Islington Festival became the second largest free London festival, after The Notting Hill Carnival. Programming themes for the street closures included Beachlife where 41 visual artists (FAT) plus a photographic exhibition by Martin Parr turned a mile long stretch of the A1 road into a conceptual British Seaside Resort, complete with beach huts, alternative saucy postcards, sand sculpture, alternative circus seaside shows and live music. Feast 2000, saw a mile long table set for 8,000 seated guests installed along Upper Street drawing its inspiration from one of the oldest traditions of civilisation - food and feasting.
In 2001, The Mayor’s Thames Festival initially appointed Catherine as a consultant for a three month contract to undertake a Strategic SWOT analysis with a focus on developing the festival’s artistic program, as well as creating new partnerships with the cultural institutions and major corporate players on London’s South Bank. She was subsequently invited to join the festival as Associate Director and did so for three years. With singer and composer Helen Chadwick, she intiated Sing for Water as one of many new elements to the then festival programme, which has since become an annual event. She presented Sticky by Improbable Theatre after persuading Michael Lynch, Director of London’s South Bank Centre to come on board as co-producer to present the first live theatre show on Jubilee Gardens for ten years. She initiated and designed a five-day intensive program for fifteen senior marketing executives from Unilever, culminating in their performing Sticky with the company to an audience of 10,000.
Catherine has been a regular contributor to the Arts Administration and Arts Management Diploma as a visiting lecturer at Birkbeck University in London and she has designed & managed many project placements for Birkbeck & City University’s Arts Administration BA and MA students over a ten-year period.
In 1997 she undertook a year long, senior management training course called Common Purpose and several shorter Arts Management courses covering a broad range of skill development.
Since relocating to Australia in 2004 she set up Reiser Productions Pty Ltd to undertake a range of different arts projects as a Producer and as an arts consultant, the first of which was under contract to The Australia Council, to promote the work of two of Australia’s leading contemporary dance companies, Lucy Guerin & Company, and Ros Warby at APAP in New York, America’s largest dance market. For Reiser Productions, she Executive Produced Sing for Water, Australia for the Brisbane Riverfest in Sept 2005, bringing together 500 singers from across Queensland under Musical Director, Sean O’Boyle. The concert was sponsored and filmed by Channel 9, attended by 6,000 people and included guest artist, Kate Ceberano and a number of local indigenous artists. For Festival Melbourne 2006 (the cultural festival for The Commonwealth Games), she produced two mass choir concerts: Children Sing for Water, which engaged with ten Melbourne state primary schools and, Sing for Water, which engaged with 27 multi-cultural community choirs from across Victoria led by Musical Director, Kavisha Mazella to work alongside a number of professional artists, including Paul Kelly. 5,000 people attended the concerts and the ABC featured the project on Sunday Arts.
In 2005/06, she worked on the independently produced documentary, Women of the Sun 25 Years Later with her husband, filmmaker, Bob Weis. The film had several theatrical releases throughout Australia at various film festivals before being shown twice on the ABC as well as internationally. Between 2005-07, she co-produced and co-directed, Lindsay’s Reserve, a documentary about award winning winemaker Lindsay McCall and the significance of The Mornington Peninsula as a cool climate wine-growing region.
She lives with Bob and Sam in Melbourne, Australia.
This superbly produced documentary celebrates the high end of Australian wine achievements through the story of the Paringa Estate Winery on the Mornington Peninsula in Victoria, a cool climate region, where according to some wine connoisseurs produces “some of the best Pinot Noir on earth...