News & Events
DONATION APPEAL FOR GUEST TEACHERS
A donation appeal has been launched in October 2013 to help bring guest teachers to the School.
All gifts to this appeal will help NZSD students to learn from renowned dance tutors, and to achieve their dreams of dancing with professional companies.
Yayoi Matches (pictured), a New Zealander and classical ballet student in her first year at NZSD, says guest tutors are really important. She explains, “You can learn so much. Otherwise we wouldn’t get these opportunities, as New Zealand is so far away”.
The New Zealand School of Dance is a registered charity and has to raise at least $300,000 every year just to keep operating, on top of its government funding and fees.
Photo by Stephen A'Court
GRAND PRIX WINNER RETURNS TO PERFORM
New Zealand School of Dance students Law Lok Huen (Tirion) and Stefaan Morrow performed as guest artists at the Asian Grand Prix in Hong Kong in August. They accompanied the School's director Garry Trinder who is president of the jury for the competition and was formerly artistic director of the Hong Kong Ballet.
Tirion was born in Hong Kong and won the Asian Grand Prix in 2012, so it was fitting that she return to the competition as a guest.
The two performed the duet First Light, choreographed by NZSD graduate and member of the Royal New Zealand Ballet Loughlan Prior, in the concluding gala of the competition.
Photo: Tirion Law and Stefaan Morrow in 'First Light, photographed by Alex Efimoff
DIRECTOR GARRY TRINDER RECEIVES HONOUR
New Zealand School of Dance Director, Garry Trinder has been appointed a Member of the New Zealand Order of Merit in the Queen's Birthday Honours 2013, in recognition of his services to dance.
Garry trained at the Royal Ballet School, Rambert School of Ballet and Maurice Béjart's MUDRA. His extensive career includes six years as artistic director of the Hong Kong Ballet and two years as director of dance at South Africa's NAPAC Dance Company.
He has been associated with many international ballet competitions including the Prix de Lausanne in Switzerland, and the Youth America Grand Prix in New York City. Since 2011 he has assumed the role of President of the Jury for the Asian Grand Prix ballet competition in Hong Kong and is an artistic adviser to West Australian Ballet.
Garry was appointed director of the New Zealand School of Dance in 1998, and has made an extremely valuable contribution to the school in his fifteen years at the School.
Photo by Stephen A'Court
THIRD YEAR STUDENT CHOREOGRAPHERS
Students in their third year of full-time study at the New Zealand School of Dance have toured a new contemporary dance show, to Wellington, Christchurch and Auckland in 2013.
On the strength of its premiere season in Wellington in May, the NZSD was invited to take the show, titled And Then it Moved, to Auckland for Tempo Dance Festival and to Christchurch for the Body Festival in October.
Created for NZSD Choreographic Season 2013, the show is the result of four intensive months of preparation. These first time choreographers, who also dance in the show, have worked with Artistic Coordinator Victoria Colombus to develop the piece into a highly engaging dance work.
“Choreographic Season is an amazing opportunity for us to explore both our own individual movement vocabularies and things that are relevant to us as young people,” said third year student Sarah Gatzonis.
All the third year students involved in And Then it Moved have taken up secondments during their final year of study in 2013. They have spent time with professional companies that include Sydney Dance Company, Expressions Dance Company, Australian Dance Theatre and Dancenorth in Australia, and New Zealand Dance Company, Footnote Dance, and Atamira in New Zealand.
Photo: Camillo Baracco and Katie Rudd in 'And Then It Moved'. Photographed by Stephen A'Court
NZSD SUCCESSFULLY BOOSTED
The NZSD Boosted crowd funding project reached 100% funded in April, successfully raising $5,000 for Choreographic Season 2013.
Launched on 21 March 2013, Boosted is a brand new crowd funding platform created by the Arts Foundation. The New Zealand School of Dance had one of the very first launch projects on the site, with 30 days to achieve the target of $5000.
The funding was to help to create a unique set, lighting and costumes for Choreographic Season 2013. For the first time the show broke traditional performance boundaries with live musicians playing alongside the dancers. Thank you to the 63 individuals and companies who have supported our talented students to get this brave, inventive show on stage.
Photo: New Zealand School of Dance students. Photographed by Stephen A'Court
SUCCESS AT AHA
Students from the New Zealand School of Dance shone at the Alana Haines Australasian Awards in March 2013.
Tynan Wood took top honours winning the Supreme Award.
Tynan has since been invited to perform in Tempo Dance Festival in Auckland and the DANZDance20 show for Wellington Dance Festival.
NZSD student placings at the AHA Awards:
Full-time students: Tynan Wood - Winner Supreme Awards Group B, William Fitzgerald - 2nd runner up Supreme Awards Group B, Tirion Law Lok Huen - 5th place Supreme Awards Group B, Jiang Peng Fei - semi-finalist Supreme Awards Group, B Stefaan Morrow - semi-finalist Supreme Awards Group B, Ruth Austin - quarter-finalist Supreme Awards Group B, Chen Rui Feng - quarter-finalist Supreme Awards Group B, Jemma Grenfell - quarter-finalist Supreme Awards Group B
Scholars: Damen Axtens - 1st runner up Junior Scholars, Cadence Barrack - semi finalist Junior Scholars, Isabel Morris - semi-finalist Junior Scholars
Associates: Libby-Rose Niederer - semi-finalist Supreme Awards Group A, Katherine Sonnekus - semi-finalist Supreme Awards Group A, Katerina Hond - quarter-finalist Supreme Awards Group A, Thomas McClintock - quarter-finalist Supreme Awards Group A, Jana Baldovino - quarter-finalist Junior Scholars, Estelle Thomson - quarter-finalist Junior Scholars
Photo: Tynan Wood performing at the AHA Awards, March 2013. www.smileclick.co.nz
GRADUATES RETURN TO TEACH
Two of New Zealand's finest dancers Ursula Robb and Nadine Tyson are teaching at the New Zealand School of Dance this year.
Ursula Robb spent more than a decade in Europe dancing with Rosas, Ultima Vez and Zoo. In 2011 she worked as rehearsal director with Paris Opera Ballet and danced with the New Zealand Dance Company in their first season.
Auckland dancer Nadine Tyson joined the Royal New Zealand Ballet in 1995. She danced many pivotal roles during nine years with the RNZB and has recently been invited by the company to teach.
Both are graduates of the New Zealand School of Dance and returned to join the school's faculty, teaching the current students in 2013.
Photos: Nadine Tyson (top), photographed by Bill Cooper. Ursula Robb (below).
Two New Zealand School of Dance students joined staff and students from seventeen other professional ballet schools at the Assemblée Internationale 2013 in Toronto. The festival, hosted by Canada's National Ballet School in April 2013, was an intensive seven days of classes, performances, forums and professional development.
NZSD students Jarrah McArthur and Tynan Woods performed Jeffrey Tan's Facade at the festival.
"The choreographer Jeffrey Tan, from Singapore, came to New Zealand for two weeks to rehearse his pas de deux with us." said Jarrah.
"Jeffrey is a wonderful teacher. He introduced us to new techniques and ideas, taking our partnering skills to a new level."
Other performances at the AI13 festival ranged from works representative of each school's culture, to student-created choreography with performances of blended casts from the various schools.
Photo: Tynan Wood and Jarrah McArthur rehearsing Jeffrey Tan's 'Facade'. Photographed by Celia Jenkins
THE CLASS OF 2012
Dancers who trained at the New Zealand School of Dance in 2012 secured places dancing with the following companies
Black Grace – Brydie Colquhoun
West Australian Ballet – Chloe Einicke and Mitchell Powell
Australian Dance Theatre – Samantha Hines and Matte Roffe
Royal New Zealand Ballet – Laura Jones
Douglas Wright – Simone Lapka
Singapore Dance Theatre – Jia Xi Lee and Luis Piva Junior
New Zealand Dance Company – Gareth Okan and Pamela Sidhu
Chunky Move – James Pham
Dancenorth – Andrew Searle
Houston Ballet II - Caue Frias
Atamira Dance Company - Andrew Miller
Other students from the class of 2012 have gone on to further training, including Napat Mathinanon who is studying for a degree in dance at Chulalongkorn University and Chris Gerty who has joined the San Francisco Ballet School's trainee programme.
Photo: Samantha Hines and Matte Roffe, now dancing with Australian Dance Theatre. Photographed by Stephen A'Court
PROGRAMMES FOR YOUNG DANCERS RE-LAUNCHED
The New Zealand School of Dance's role in nurturing New Zealand’s young dance talent has been highlighted with the re-launch of two aspirational programmes for school-aged dancers.
The Associates and Scholars programmes have developed out of the Junior Associates and Regional Associates programmes run by the school since 2000.
The Associates programme identifies ballet and contemporary dance students aged 13 - 16 who have an aptitude for a career in performance. A tiered structure sees students progressing through the programme as Junior, Intermediate and Senior Associates with Senior Associates joining the full-time students for an immersion week.
The Scholars programme takes classical ballet students from the age of 10 through a series of levels. Class sizes are small and the ballet training is supported by allied subjects such as body conditioning.
Photo by Stephen A'Court
Darcey Bussell CBE, former Principal dancer with The Royal Ballet, London visited the New Zealand School of Dance in June 2012.
Darcey Bussell was guest of honour at the fundraising event A Gala Dinner with Darcey Bussell and held a coaching session with New Zealand School of Dance students
This once in a lifetime opportunity was presented by the Royal Academy of Dance and the New Zealand School of Dance. The gala dinner raised funds both for the RAD Genée International Ballet Competition (Wellington, December 2012) and the New Zealand School of Dance on its 45th anniversary in 2012.
Photo: Darcey Bussell coaching New Zealand School of Dance student Laura Jones.Photographed by Stephen A'Court.
PAUL TAYLOR AND 'Company B'
Former Paul Taylor Dance Company member Richard Chen See was guest tutor at the New Zealand School of Dance (NZSD) in 2011. Richard taught Paul Taylor's Company B to the students for the school's Graduation Season.
"Taylor stands amongst the pantheon of American dance giants.” Dance Magazine (USA)
Company B illuminates dominant social issues of the 1940s and the emotions surrounding them. It is danced to well-loved big band era tunes by the Andrews Sisters such as The Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy (of Company B), Pennsylvania Polka and Oh Johnny, Oh Johnny, Oh! Rather than incorporate the social dances of the era, Paul Taylor has injected their essence into his modernist choreography created in the early 90s. The bubbly music and dance rhythms contrast with themes of wartime loss creating a layering of moods, at times feel-good and melancholy.
"What other artist today makes poetic drama of such variety and eloquence? A Taylor season is a journey through one of the most singular and searching imaginations of our time.” New York Times
“What Taylor himself will bequeath as a legacy... is one of the richest and most creative collections of work in 20th-century dance. He came as a pioneer; he will leave as a master.” Dance Magazine
Richard Chen See’s visit to the New Zealand School of Dance was made possible with assistance from Fulbright New Zealand and the Embassy of the United States of America.
Photo: Richard Chen See, photographed by Stephen A'Court
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Tours of New Zealand School of Dance
The New Zealand School of Dance is a great place to visit for school or tour groups. Our students are highly motivated, vibrant, self-disciplined and are excellent role models.
Secondary school tours usually last around 45 minutes (shorter for younger students) and will often include observation of New Zealand School of Dance classes or rehearsals.
To arrange a tour email the Dance Administrator or phone 04 381 9226.