The school is being transformed into a multi-arts precinct by Tutti following the transfer of students to the state-of-the-art McAuley Community School at Hove.
The school’s closure at the end of Term 4 signalled the end of 104 years of Catholic education on the site with the majority of students commencing at McAuley Community School in 2020.
Catholic Education SA transferred the ownership of the land back to the Brighton parish which recently announced it had negotiated a five-year lease with Tutti for rental of the classrooms and performing arts centre. The rest of the site will be available for parish use.
Originally renowned for its pioneering approach to inclusion through the Tutti Choir, Tutti has grown to offer music, theatre, visual arts and digital arts programs to adults and children with learning disability at Galway House on Minda’s North Brighton campus and other nearby locations. Tutti also umbrellas three disability led collectives including Company AT autistic theatre.
Tutti chief executive officer and artistic director Pat Rix said after 12 “happy years” at Galway House, the move would open up new opportunities for the disability arts organisation and enable it to offer places to new artists waiting to enter programs.
“We’ll also have the opportunity to bring all of our Brighton-based programs together in one place,” Mrs Rix said.
“As a creative community, Tutti will bring irrepressible joy and vibrancy to the parish grounds and I’m sure the community will find that our values and rhythms are a good fit.”
The musical term ‘tutti’ means ‘everyone’, reflecting the inclusive model of the company which began in 1997 as a small community singing group for people with an intellectual disability.
The group quickly grew and over time has expanded to offer programs in visual arts, performing arts, music, film and new media.
Mrs Rix said she was looking forward to inviting parishioners to see the group’s work and discuss ideas about how they could work together to increase community involvement in the arts.
Brighton parish priest Father Michael Musyoka Kyumu also welcomed the decision.
“Brighton Catholic parish is a family and I take great pleasure to welcome the Tutti community to join us,” he said.
“As they share their talents with us, we will celebrate God-given gifts together.”
Brighton parish finance council chair John Sullivan said the parish was pleased to have a tenant that “fits in with our community and our ethos”.
“At the same time we gain the use of the administration building in Strathmore Terrace, currently St Teresa’s School offices,” he said.
“This will provide more comfortable accommodation for existing groups in the parish and open up opportunities for the development of a variety of interest groups and activities.”
Work to redevelop the main St Teresa’s school building will take place over the Christmas break.