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Creative ID: 120

Art form(s): Theatre, Multi-Disciplinary, Literature.

Based in: Nelson.

When I'm available: Given notice, I can be available at any point in 2020.

Where I'm available: Nelson, Marlborough, Christchurch are easiest for accommodation purposes, but anywhere in NZ would be great.

My arts or creative practice (including details about my specific focus within that art form/practice and my strengths)

I have been performing and teaching theatre, both community-based and professional, since I was young. I have collated 9 years of secondary teaching since graduating in 2006 and enjoyed teaching Drama at all Primary levels, and to adults. My major accomplishments in performance are working at a theatre in Christchurch as an improviser and children's theatre practitioner for 7 years, and co-directing a highly regarded theatre company in Nelson for 6 years. I have taught Drama continuously at a high school since 2015, and achieved enormous success with my students in the realms of NCEA, with students winning scholarships, and reaching national level in the SGCNZ Secondary Shakespeare Festival, and second at the South Island Theatresports Competition in 2019. As a performer I am recognised nationally by my peers as an improvisation specialist, and also have depth of experience with devised work, children's plays, and Shakespeare.

My track record of experience and success - or the track record of experience and success of the creative or artist that I will partner with

My partner as a creative is my wife, who I have been creating theatre, and a life, with since 2002. Having cut our teeth in Christchurch with many years of experimental theatre and training, my partner and I brought professionalism to the Nelson theatre scene with our company which we ran from 2010–2015. The company catered for a range of tastes, while placing acting quality and development at the heart of our operation: we ran a monthly improvised comedy show at a local theatre for nearly 4 years, staged a hugely popular Outdoor Summer Theatre play every January, as well as programmes of classes for youth and adults, and regular staging of plays. We paid actors from this region $30,000 in contract wages in our last year of operation. For our efforts, we were jointly awarded The Nelson Mail's Nelsonian of the Year for Arts. My partner and I also inaugurated the Nelson Fringe Festival, which has experienced immense success.

Describe the experience you have had working with children or young people, teaching or facilitating creative processes

  • Nine years of secondary teaching, Drama and English.
  • Four sections of itinerant Primary Drama teaching in 6–10 week blocks at two schools.
  • Many years of adult and youth drama class teaching, such as improv, a physical course, a youth troupe, improv adult class.
  • In demand to teach improvisation for all types of groups and scenarios, recently a primary school's staff, a University Improv Club and a company in India.

Why I want to be part of the Creatives in Schools programme and how my involvement will link to my creative practice

I am always looking for new opportunities to engage in the Arts. I believe re-invention and change are necessary for growth and fulfillment, and that is why I am leaving the comfort zone of my full-time position this year, and looking to share my skills with different people. The more young people that can be inspired by creativity the better. I hope to turn young people on to cooperation, creation, and problem-solving in a meaningful way that equips them for the future and shows them how fun expression through theatrical arts can be.

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