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Creative ID: 208

Art form(s): Dance.

Based in: Auckland.

When I'm available: As I am self-employed I have a flexible timetable and am available three days a week in 2020.

Where I'm available: Mount Eden, Epsom, Newmarket, Hillsborough, Mt Roskill, Ponsonby, Onehunga, Mt Albert, Point Chevalier, Parnell, Grey Lynn, St Lukes and Ellerslie.

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

I am a choreographic artist who specialises in contemporary dance choreography and creative dance teaching. My choreographic focus is directed towards deconstructing binary readings by creating performance, video and installation works that move ambiguously between the known and unknown. In my practice as a creative dance teacher my focus is to engage people in movement explorations to create new physical, emotional and mental pathways. I am interested in expanding their understandings of dance/movement so that they can develop confidence in their own bodies and the possibilities of how they can move and create movement. In my practice I encourage my students and dancers to stretch their imaginations and challenge their mind/body coordination. I am able to work quickly and clearly with a group of people to create choreographic structures and movement tasks that work with the students' current skills and interests and that guide them to go deeper into these as well as explore new ideas. As I am a self-employed artist who produces my own work, I am very good at managing projects and completing them within the specified time frame and budget.

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

I'm an award-winning and distinguished graduate from The New Zealand School of Dance. I have produced and choreographed works throughout New Zealand and Asia Pacific including Beijing, Hong Kong, Macau and Taipei. I have performed and exhibited at public and private galleries including St Paul Street Gallery, Artspace, Peter McLeavey Gallery, and Bowerbank Ninow. In one year, I was awarded Supreme Winner of the Short and Sweet Dance Festival, Auckland Outstanding Choreography by DANZ, and Best Emerging Choreographer by Metro Magazine’s Best of Auckland. I have undertaken several residencies including Artspace NZ (2014), MAP Research Series (2015), and Asia NZ Foundation, Taipei Artist Village (2017). In 2015 I won a scholarship to undertake a Master of Performance and Media Arts (First Class Honours).

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

I have been teaching ballet (4-year-olds – adults), contemporary dance (7-year-olds – adults) and fitness (12-year-olds – adults) for ten years. I have also been teaching creative dance in primary schools as part of Kiwi Sport for the past three years. In this programme we explore the possibilities of how the body can move using; rhythm, animals, counting, shapes, words that evoke movements (such as leap, shiver, cluster, slide and twitch), how music can affect the way we move, slow and fast, spatial relationships with others (close or far), to create and learn dance routines. Through the class there is space for the child to explore their own movements within a clear structure. I am skilled at facilitating and delivering creative processes for a variety of groups and contexts, and am flexible in my delivery methods in order to best serve the needs of a particular group. In my choreographic practice I regularly facilitate creative processes. I have made several choreographic works on youth companies as well as many on professional dancers.

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

I would like to be part of the creatives in schools programme as I believe in the importance of access to the arts for all people. Dance and movement is vital in aiding learning, motor skills and mental health. As a teacher it is an enriching experience to facilitate new experiences and explorations with young people. They explore the ideas in ways that I would not have thought of and constantly challenge my ideas and ways of working pushing me to grow as an artist and a facilitator of creative practice. The creative process is central to the creation of work. I am invested in creating safe environments with clear boundaries so that the participants can explore and expand the movement tasks. This allows the participants to follow their own interests within a task and develop movement ideas, enabling the development of their individual and unique voices which is vital in creative projects. This approach can help them to build resilience and to trust their intuitive vision and interests.

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