The Public Studio creates both in-house and client collaborations across the disciplines of film and video, installation, still photography and live events. We offer offer a full suite of artistic and creative direction, production, post-production, installation and event management services.


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Co-creative director and executive producer, Ming-Zhu Hii is a writer, director, producer and actor who has been working in the film, television, theatre, art, publishing and design industries for over a decade. 

In addition to an extensive, ongoing acting career and her auteur and producing work in film and theatre, Ming-Zhu has worked as a freelance consultant in business development and marketing strategy, launched the events department at Dumbo Feather magazine, and started and run two successful boutique businesses: Orlando and Ivy (art and design retail), and The Screen Test Studio (online talent casting).

She has a Bachelor of Dramatic Art in Acting from the Victorian College of the Arts (2002), a Small Business Management Certificate IV, and a wealth of professional development training in multicultural arts leadership and brokering under her belt. 

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Co-creative director, Nicholas Coghlan, graduated from NIDA in 2002 with a Bachelor of Arts (Acting). Since graduating he has worked extensively as an actor in film, television, and theatre both in Australia and abroad.

Nicholas is also a playwright and screen writer, a cinematographer, and an educator specialising in stage and screen acting and public speaking. He has produced a number of independent productions, including Sandwiches, Attract/Repel, Until Then, Then and This Is Beautiful for The Public Studio.

He has appeared in Star Wars III (JAK), Canal Road (CH.9), Carla Cametti P.D. (SBS), House Husbands (CH.9), Howzat! Kerry Packer’s War (CH.9), Jack Irish: Black Tide (Essential Media), Mr and Mrs Murder (CH.10) and Nowhere Boys (Matchbox/ABC). His theatre acting credits include: Until Then, Then (The Public Studio); The Threepenny Opera (Company B, Belvoir St Theatre); Blasted (B#, Belvoir St); Hellbent (Red Stitch Theatre); and TWO (The Melbourne Town Players). 


The Public Studio has had several different incarnations - in 2009, in its original formation, the company was called The Melbourne Town Players, where the focus of the work was on theatre and live performance. From mid-2010, The Public Studio was minted, and its history included being a physical space where creatives could drop in to work, a digital media marketing and business strategy consultancy, and in 2013 - a company where the production of video and film work took centre stage alongside live performance.

In 2014, The Public Studio completes its transition to being an experimental image creation company with an emphasis on film, still and installation works, as well as art direction and production for singular live events. 


Creative collaborators past and present include: Matthew Angel (graphic designer & art director), Anabelle Lacroix (curator & producer), Frances Haysey (publicist & media management), Damien McLean (lighting designer), Russell Goldsmith (sound designer & composer), Melanie Liertz (set & costume designer), Raya Slavin (sound designer), Glyn Roberts (dramaturg), Melanie Beddie (dramaturg), Veronica Cybulski (producer), Lauren Urquhart (performer & producer), Shalini Li Ling Nair (producer), Klara Kelvy (art department & production assistant), Pier Carthew (performer & photographer), Naomi Wong (set designer), Kitty Green (cinematographer & stills photographer), Jing-Xuan Chan (performer), Terry Yeboah (performer), Georgina Naidu (performer), Fanny Hanusin (performer), Alex Papps (performer), Georgina Capper (performer), Edwina Wren (performer).

Special thanks to Lauren Urquhart with whom TPS's original iteration, The Melbourne Town Players was formed in 2009, and to Damien McLean, Russell Goldsmith and Matthew Angel with whom TPS has collaborated regularly since 2009 on a gamut of multifaceted projects.  

Collaborating clients & presenting partners include: Chamber Made Opera (with Zierle & Carter), Klara Kelvy (visual artist), Sayraphim Lothian (public artist); Malthouse Theatre, La Mama, The Storeroom, Next Wave; Anabelle Lacroix.

Still photographic credits: Nicholas Coghlan, Ming-Zhu Hii, Pier Carthew, Matthew Angel, Bronwyn Pringle, Bernadette Keys, Kitty Green, Naomi Wong.

Images & visual branding: Matthew Angel