Meet the incredible talent building Queensland’s new theatre in Brisbane

Delivering one of Queensland’s most complex infrastructure projects, the women behind the New Performing Arts Venue are representatives of a multidisciplinary team from Blight Rayner, Lendlease, Arup, and the Department of Energy and Public Works (Queensland).

Each of these five women, in her own way, plays an integral part in construction of the world-class venue that will become the fifth theatre within the QPAC precinct, and an architectural icon for Brisbane.


Pictured (left to right)  Evelyn Furby, Monica Varrie, Lauren Hickling, Megan Neagle, Cherise Czislowski


Evelyn Furby
Structural Engineer, Arup

As one of Arup’s Structural Engineers, Evelyn is a key member of the design team and is responsible for the structural steel that is currently being installed at the New Performing Arts Venue. The large structural steel trusses, beams and columns form the complex framework of the theatre’s internal auditorium, back and front of house and will support the large, curved glass façade panels – a major feature of the iconic architectural design.


Monica Varrie
Project Engineer, Lendlease

As one of Lendlease’s Project Engineers on the New Performing Arts Venue, Monica is responsible for overseeing the auditorium fit out including the building’s acoustics, orchestra pit and cantilevered tiered seating as well as coordinating the build of plant rooms located atop that will service the new theatre once operational. She has experience in both the building and rail sectors, having worked in New Zealand prior to moving to Australia.


Lauren Hickling
Architect / Interior Designer, Blight Rayner

Lauren is both an Architect and Interior Designer, having worked on the New Performing Arts Venue since the competition phase commenced in 2019. She leads interior design alongside Norwegian architecture partner, Snøhetta, delivering a design that honours First Nations Peoples, respects the heritage-listed architecture of Robin Gibson, and connects community with the performing arts.


Megan Neagle
Senior Project Director, Major Projects, Department of Energy & Public Works

Megan is a Senior Project Director within the Major Projects Division of the Department of Energy and Public Works. Megan plans, manages, and leads teams to successfully complete their goals and objectives within complex and constrained parameters. Her career has focussed on design and management within Australia and Internationally. Megan has managed and coordinated the New Performing Arts Venue project since 2018 for clients Arts Queensland and QPAC. She is responsible for the procurement, design and delivery of the new state-of-the-art theatre that will form part of the wider Queensland Performing Arts Centre precinct.


Cherise Czislowski
Operations Manager – QLD/NT, Lendlease

With her 18 years’ construction experience, Cherise has delivered complex projects across a range of industry sectors including airports, schools, hospitals, and retail shopping centres. She manages operations for Lendlease throughout Queensland and Northern Territory with key projects including the New Performing Arts Venue and the Cairns Convention Centre.



Pictured  Lauren Hickling



Photography by Rix Ryan Photography
Originally published by Lendlease