JOSIPA [KNEŽEVIC] DRAISMA is a multidisciplinary artist, cultural leader and producer working across theatre, music, visual art and film. Josipa is the Founder and Creative Director of IN WILD COMPANY, a production house that specialises in music and theatre storytelling. Josipa's recent credits include producing, developing and performing in the new Australian play with music, LJUBIČICA - WILD VIOLET, which was awarded THE SYDNEY FRINGE BEST MUSIC SHOW AWARD, MENAGERIE, SHAPESHIFTER, C'EST LA VIE and JOSIPA DRAISMA IS JEAN CLAUDE VAN DAMME. Josipa is premiering her latest major work THE HEN HOUSE in partnership with PYT Fairfield in September 2023 at Riverside Theatre, following an extended tour to The Art House Wyong, Camden Civic Centre, Chatswood Concourse and Orange Civic Centre.
Josipa’s work has been programmed in major festivals and venues around Australia including The Melbourne Comedy Festival, The Sydney Comedy Festival, where she was hand picked as BEST EMERGING COMEDIAN, The Giant Dwarf, The Adelaide Fringe Festival, Casula Powerhouse Arts Centre, Django Bar, The Sydney Fringe Comedy Festival, The Sydney Fringe Festival, The Factory Theatre The Blue Room Theatre for Blue Room Summer Nights in Perth and The Melbourne Cabaret Festival at The Butterfly Club.
In 2018 Josipa was selected along with 25 artists from around the world to participate in the IETM Campus program in Fužine, Croatia led by acclaimed mentors such as Farooq Chaudhry co-founder and Producer of Akram Khan Company. Josipa was selected nationally by Playwriting Australia (PWA) to participate in the 2018 National Play Festival Industry program and in the 2015 the PWA Directors Studio program in Sydney.
Josipa is a founding member of the comedy group The Choo Choo Troupe and recently studied Improvisation as part of the Actors Accelerator Program at Improv Theatre Sydney (ITS). Josipa was the Co-Artistic Director of the independent theatre company, The Colour Blind Project 2008 - 2012, which aimed to provide opportunities for performers of multicultural and Aboriginal backgrounds to create new work for audiences across Australia. Josipa is currently the Practitioner and Audience Development Officer at Create NSW, the NSW government's agency for arts, screen and culture where she develops and manages a suit of projects and initiatives for NSW based artists and organisations. Josipa was recently recognised by Create NSW for her outstanding contribution and passion for championing, promoting and celebrating NSW based artists from diverse backgrounds through her work.
Josipa has worked as a professional voice over artist and as an actor in corporate video, short films, television and interactive entertainment with brands such as the ABC, Beyond Productions, Disney Channel, Ebay & Fluffy Kitten Studios. Josipa has also worked extensively as a production manager and casting director in television production across children’s television, documentary and reality.
Josipa is a passionate advocate for cultural diversity in programming and leadership within the arts, screen and culture sectors, and recently graduated with a Masters In Fine Arts in Cultural Leadership at the National Institute of Drama (NIDA). Her research in what systemic and structural barriers culturally diverse women face in attaining senior leadership roles in the Australian arts and cultural sector was recognised by the NIDA Foundation Trust through the 2023 Lynne Williams AM Award for Outstanding Achievement in Cultural Leadership.
Josipa is a University of Wollongong graduate and holds a MA in Creative Arts in Theatre Performance and a Bachelor of Creative Arts major in Theatre & Music Performance (with Distinction). Josipa has studied extensively in Australia and in New York in the Ivana Chubbuck Technique, Bouffon, Clown, Yat Malmgren technique and most recently in the Uta Hagen method with Kim Krejus and Shakespeare with Robert Meldrum at the 16th Street Actors Studio in Melbourne. Josipa is a classically trained mezzo-soprano and has worked with Broadway musical director and producer Kimberly Vaughn in New York.