CEO & Creative Director
Mat Kesting GAICD
Mat is a programming specialist with a life of experience with festivals and screen culture.
Named as a one of Screen International’s Future Leaders in 2019, Mat’s passion for cinema and strong curatorial voice is well known in the Australian film industry. He ran the Festival’s programming from 2015 until being appointed as CEO in 2019. Prior to this he was Exhibition Manager at the Mercury Cinema, programming special events including Cinémathèque, Silent ReMasters, and Seniors on Screen. He programmed six editions of the On Screen strand of OzAsia Festival, and was previously Program Manager at the Brisbane International Film Festival. He currently sits on the Festivals Adelaide Board. A true cinephile, Mat has also been involved in 15/15 Film Festival, Australian Film Television and Radio School, Lumiere Cinemas, ACMI, Melbourne International Arts Festival, and Midsumma Festival.
Mat leads the strategic direction of Adelaide Film Festival and manages the Investment Fund (AFFIF). Passionate about commissioning new work from local and national filmmakers, Mat is always on the hunt for incredible films to screen and bold new work to support.
He is fascinated with the natural world, committed to sustainability, and recently completed an Environmental Science degree just to keep it real. He also has three small children so no – he has no spare time or hobbies. But has fond memories of camping, once upon a time.
Email Mat: [email protected]
Head of Programming & Industry
Gail manages AFF’s programming department, responsible for film submissions, selection and Awards alongside industry development, audience expansion and AFF Youth. A prominent figure in the SA Screen Industry, Gail led the Media Resource Centre and Mercury Cinema for 12 years as CEO, transforming its professional program including introducing the Screen Makers Conference and establishing the cinema as a vital part of the city’s cultural life via launching programs such as Seniors on Screen. Gail graduated university with an on-going love of American Literature and European History.
Email Gail: [email protected]
Head of Development & Partnerships
Eira manages AFF’s development team and is responsible for our corporate partnerships and philanthropy. As a not-for-profit organisation, AFF relies on the vital support of government, corporate partners and donors to deliver its program and Eira is committed to engaging with our partners and individuals to ensure that the festival continues to grow and provide a platform for filmmakers to share with audiences the stories about who we are, where we have come from, and where we are going.
Passionate about nurturing and championing the work of exceptional artists and creatives, Eira’s diverse arts experience includes six years in senior roles at major South Australian arts organisations, including as Executive Director at Australian Dance Theatre (ADT), as well as Acting Head of Foundation & Benefaction and then Head of Development at the Art Gallery of South Australia.
Email Eira: [email protected]
As Adelaide Film Festival’s Marketing Manager, Lewis oversees and implements AFF’s brand and communication strategy, marketing campaigns, digital channels and content.
Lewis established his place in the local arts scene as a Co-director of street magazine and creative collective Yewth, a freelance content creator for the likes of WOMADelaide, Illuminate Adelaide and Groovin The Moo, and spent five years honing his integrated marketing skill-set at leading independent agency, Fuller Brand Communication.
Alongside a passion for film and tech, Lewis DJs to dancefloors at music venues and nightclubs.
Email Lewis: [email protected]
Finance & Governance Manager
Robyn is the rock of the AFF office, keeping our accounts in order, supporting the board and ensuring AFF maintains top notch governance. She’s worked across private and state government sectors and brings broad experience from a range of industries, with over twenty years of experience as a Certified Practising Accountant. Robyn’s extensive experience in financial accounting, reporting, and compliance compliments the creative team.
Development & Partnerships Coordinator
Tara looks after our partnerships for the festival – if you are interested or want to explore how you can get involved in the fun, she’s your go to – and is always interested in exploring creative, exciting, and bespoke ways to collaborate and make memorable moments for your brand.
Tara’s background stems across account management in print, television, digital, and cinema advertising, as well as facilitating as a production assistant for a local film and commercial video production company. Studying Media Arts: Film and Television and completing her honours project in cinema advertising and promotional discourse at university, Tara has always had a strong appetite and appreciation for film and feels right at home at the Adelaide Film Festival.
If she’s not sitting back with a glass of South Australian red watching a film, in her spare time, Tara is also a singer-songwriter and teaches a Latin style of dance called Zouk.
Email Tara: [email protected]
Special Initiatives Manager – Expand & Publications
Julianne serves as Adelaide Film Festival’s Special Initiatives Manager looking after EXPAND Lab and the print program publication.
Julianne has a rich background in the arts as a Creative Producer, Executive Director, Artistic Programmer, Curator and Arts Manager. She has made significant contributions to digital culture in Australia and internationally with leadership roles including Chair of International Symposium on Electronic Art from 2006–2013 and Chair of Emerging and Experimental, Australia Council for the Arts from 2013–2015. She is currently a board member of Open Space Contemporary Arts and sits on the External Advisory Board of Assemblage Centre for Creative Arts at Flinders University.
Julianne is also a founding member of the influential cyberfeminist digital artist group VNS Matrix, who formed in 1991 and continue to have their work included in significant exhibitions and publications worldwide.
Email Julianne: [email protected]
As Programming Coordinator, Bridget works closely with Gail to support the activities of the programming team. This includes everything from film submissions, to creating the printed program, AFF Youth and guest services.
Bridget studied Screen Production at university, during which time she interned with Adelaide Film Festival. She previously assisted with programming at Adelaide Cinémathèque.
Tracey liaises with all media and filmmakers regarding stories, interviews and reviews and is the main contact regarding publicity at the Festival. A film and television communications specialist with 30 years with experience across production, distribution, festivals and industry strategy, Tracey runs her own dedicated boutique PR agency. When she can tear her eyes away from the screen, she is usually found busy in the kitchen, sipping on a natural wine and planning her next travel adventure.
Email Tracey: [email protected]
The Adelaide Film Festival 2023 Crew
CEO/CREATIVE DIRECTOR Mathew Kesting
EXECUTIVE & OPERATIONS COORDINATOR Dahlia Opala
FINANCE & GOVERNANCE MANAGER Robyn Wigley
HEAD OF PROGRAMMING & INDUSTRY Gail Kovatseff
PROGRAMMING COORDINATOR Bridget McDonald
SCREENINGS, TRAFFIC & PROGRAMMING COORDINATOR Waleed Sheikh
PROGRAMMING ASSISTANT Louis Campbell
GUEST COORDINATOR Vera Tarasenko
SPECIAL INITIATIVES MANAGER — EXPAND & PUBLICATIONS Julianne Pierce
EDUCATION COORDINATOR Deanne Bullen
HEAD OF DEVELOPMENT & PARTNERSHIPS Eira Swaine
DEVELOPMENT & PARTNERSHIPS COORDINATOR Tara Falleti
DEVELOPMENT & PARTNERSHIPS ASSISTANT Victoria Cnotek
PUBLICIST Tracey Mair
MARKETING MANAGER Lewis Brideson
MARKETING COORDINATOR Larissa Dubrowsky-Ryan
MARKETING ASSISTANT Aryani Singh
PRODUCTION & EVENTS MANAGER Jason Warner
PRODUCTION & EVENTS COORDINATOR Kahl Hopper
BOX OFFICE & INSIGHTS COORDINATOR Cy Martin
VOLUNTEER & OFFICE COORDINATOR Cecile Saidi
IT SERVICES Boileau Business Technology
CREATIVE AGENCY Cul-de-sac Creative
MARKETING ADVISORY KWPX
PRINTER Chris Doak, Print Solutions