Faculty of Education and Arts

Ailsa Brackley du Bois

CRCAH doctoral candidate


Stardust on the Victorian Goldfields: theatrical entertainment, popular culture and public place 1851 – 1911


Ailsa Brackley du BoisThis thesis will examine the role of, and connections between, variety theatre and popular culture in relation to the political sociology of public place on the Victorian Goldfields from 1851 until 1911.

The aim is to conduct a fine grained study of the cultural life around theatrical entertainment, and the corresponding spatial facilities and places utilised in public expression, over this sixty year period, with a view to demonstrating the significant role played by the performing arts and visual spectacle in popular culture and identity across Victoria’s Goldfields, during a formative period in early Australian history.

Conference papers

'Humble heritage and the fragile fabric of Ballarat East' presented at the ACHS (Association of Critical Heritage Studies) Biannual Conference at ANU, Canberra, December 2014.


M.A. Journalism, University of Technology Sydney
B.A. Hons1, Flinders University of South Australia
Cert. Tourism, Adelaide College of TAFE


Ailsa works as a sessional in Marketing at the Business School and is the Course Coordinator, Lecturer, Tutor and Moderator of:
Services Marketing, BUMKT2601 (Ballarat and Moderator of IIBIT Sydney, IIBIT Melbourne and Baiyun, China)
Consumer Behaviour, BUMKT2602 (Moderator only, Baiyun, China)
Marketing Research, BUMKT2603 (Ballarat)
Product Management, BUMKT3706 (Ballarat)

Professional background

Ailsa established her business The Editorial Suite in 2012, and provides contracted services for the creative industries, relevant to culture, heritage, tourism and the arts.

Ailsa recently planned, programmed and successfully delivered the 10th Anniversary 2016 Clunes Booktown Festival, as the Artistic Director. This involved: strategic vision; partnership building and alliance creation; sculpting the brief for visual branding, promotions and marketing collateral; significant media engagement; and identifying talent, commissioning and curating: 1) authors/writers; 2) chairs/speakers; 3) entertainers; 4) performing artists; 5) biblio & paper artists; and 6) various other festival participants.

During 2015, Ailsa worked on Marketing Communications for the 'Open Door Studio' participatory design process at Ballarat's Civic Hall Site, and also as a Learning Designer in Digital Futures with CLIPP (Centre for Learning Innovation and Professional Practice) at Federation University.

Ailsa has fifteen years' prior experience managing business development, talent acquisition and product teams for global publishing companies, McGraw Hill Higher Education and Oxford University Press. As Senior Publisher, she was responsible for the Australian and New Zealand markets. She brought to fruition over 140 University level text books on marketing, management, business, social science and humanities, and countless accompanying digital teaching and learning items. Ailsa signed over 65 first editions. Ailsa’s products won various Australian Publisher’s Association Category Awards for Excellence in Educational Publishing throughout the 2001-2011 period, as well as Design and Sales Awards.

Ailsa’s early career experience spanned five industries: 1) print media: book and theatre reviews, celebrity, feature and catalogue writing; 2) broadcast media: radio announcing, television administration and policy research; 3) retail sales: books, music and fashion; 4) tourism: international travel sales and tour guiding; 5) hospitality: 5-star service management and private event catering). Her portfolio of non-fiction articles has been variously published in books, magazines, newspapers and on-line over several decades.

Professional associations

Art Gallery of Ballarat
Australian Historical Association
Ballaarat Mechanics' Institute
Her Majesty's Ballarat
Media, Entertainment & Arts Alliance
Museums Australia