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Creative ID: 100

Art form(s): Dance
Language(s): English
Based in: Wellington
Where I'm available:
I would be available to teach in the Wellington region excluding the Wairarapa. I would love to be able to teach in my local community – schools that are in the Whitby, Paremata, Papakowhai, Pauatahanui, and Plimmerton areas.
When I'm available: I am currently available at any time in 2020.

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

I am a classically trained dancer and teacher. I have been teaching ballet for over 14 years to a wide variety of age groups from as young as pre-school age to adults and every age in between. I am passionate about teaching ballet to every age group and believe ballet can be learnt in an environment that is both creative and engaging. My strength in this art form is providing lessons where the student can learn the foundations of ballet in a way that inspires a love for this art form. This involves storytelling using literature and illustrations that engage the student by learning ballets such as Swan Lake, Cinderella, The Nutcracker, Alice in Wonderland and others. I love to incorporate props into the classroom to enhance the engagement and focus of the class. I use a wide range of syllabi to meet the needs of the class and engage the students in the learning process. Ballet is often taught in a formalised setting and I love to incorporate new ways of thinking and teaching into the classroom to fully engage the learner to embrace this art form. The utilisation of props and visual aids helps this.

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 have over 14 years' experience in dance teaching predominantly in Sydney, Australia. I have run a Dance Faculty within an Accredited Tertiary Institution as well as having taught at numerous ballet schools (in both RAD and Cecchetti Graded Examination work). I have extensive experience with theatre productions as a Performer, Choreographer and Assistant Director. I launched an annual showcase of local Choreographers and their work for the local arts community in Sydney. I have successfully implemented a creative ballet curriculum for school-aged students at a reputable dance school in Sydney which has over 350 students. In my previous role as head teacher I worked closely with the Director of the dance school in programming for the pre-school stream and actively built the school-age stream as well as teaching Youth and Adult Ballet classes. I continue to write innovative curriculum for the dance school. I also have established my own Adult Ballet Class here in Whitby. I have trained with a member of a United States leading early childhood dance programme.

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

I have extensive teaching experience and love working with children and young people. I have taught a wide range of ages from pre-schoolers, school-aged students, as well as teens and young adults. I have taught actors and non-dancers within a theatre context. I have taught formalised graded ballet examination work and have crafted and rehearsed soloists for competition work. As well as classroom teaching I have choreographed for many end-of-year concerts, theatre productions and most recently at the local school. I have worked extensively on creating creative ballet curriculum to make ballet more engaging and appealing to children and young people today. I love to engage the students through multimedia, props, literature and illustrations. I have an innovative approach to teaching and have collaborated with other colleagues in creating material for the ballet classroom. I currently teach Adult Ballet students and apply my love of ballet and teaching the foundations of technique alongside choreography that is inspiring and enjoyable to learn and dance. I love infusing the lessons with studying some of the classics (such as Swan Lake etc.). I enjoy working with a range of music (contemporary and classical) to accompany the class.

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

I would love to be involved in the Creatives in Schools programme because I am passionate about sharing my love and knowledge of classical ballet in different contexts. I believe ballet is for everyone and not all children or young people get the opportunity to be exposed to this art form. I would love for it to be accessible and to provide education pathways that engage the students in learning ballet in new ways or for the first time. I believe creativity is the key in which to approach this and my involvement in the Creatives in Schools programme would link to my creative practice by allowing me to continue to outwork this. I would therefore continue to develop my creative practice with this in mind. I have a formalised classical training background and with that in mind believe that for today and tomorrow's generation of students ballet training would benefit from a fresh injection of creativity and innovation. To train and teach with a solid technical base but inspire and engage the student to learn this art form in new and creative ways. This has been my research and creative practice for the past 4–5 years.

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