The New Zealand Academy of Highland and National Dancing

Shanghai - Day 2 - Sightseeing - 10th Sep 2012

Shanghai - Day 2 - Sightseeing After a ‘surprise’ wakeup call at 7am in three different languages, the team went down to our hotel restaurant for a massive breakfast to start the day. Another crazy bus ride filled with near-misses and tips from our lovely guide Jackie, we arrived in The Forbidden City. HUGE is one word to describe it. With one million workers taking years to complete it, we spent the morning gazing in awe at the beautiful buildings, artwork and amazing workmanship. Off to restaurant for lunch, the team was well fed with some new toilet experiences for some of the girls! Next was a stop by The Egg, a $3.6billion opera house made out of glass. Onto Tian’an men Square; the largest public square in the world. As the team posed for photos, we were surrounded by tons of locals taking photos of us too! Without even performing we became a tourist attraction. A walk underground and we found ourselves at the newly refurbished Beijing Museum. The team learnt a lot about Ancient and New China with history-expert Jackie providing a great insight for us. The long awaited Duck Banquet was incredible! We are now professional chopstick users so hopefully we are blending in! With full bellies some of the tem took a quick look at the nearby shops with live music, street performers and market stalls creating an awesome atmosphere. Zaijen!

Harriet Lintern and Chantelle Shatford

Shanghai Day 1 - "The Highland Dance Company of NZ takes on China" - 9th Sep 2012

Shanghai Day 1 - "Day 1 of our latest adventure has been a resounding success. After negotiating check-in in Auckland - no mean feat when we are travelling as a group of 29 along with 2 full-to-the-brim suitcases of costumes, not to mention the 3 swords.... - we were all excited to be embarking on another amazing trip.

The journey was remarkably uneventful - noone lost any belongings, and we (mostly) all managed to get a few zzzs on the 12 hour flight over to Shanghai. Unfortunately, accompanying us on the flight were a few screaming infants. Those of us with earplugs were definitely the envy of the plane!

Shanghai airport was our first taste of China. From the moment we stepped off the plane into the humid heat, to the instant we walked through the arrivals gate and saw shop after shop with crabs tied up in the front windows, we knew we were in for an experience to be remembered! While at Shanghai airport some of us learnt some Mandarin phrases from friendly locals, some of us took advantage of the massaging chairs in the lounges, while others chose this time to savour some sweet treats. Thankfully the stopover before departing for Beijing was only a few hours (nothing like the challenging itinery we had going to Virginia earlier in the year!) and we were on our final league of the journey in no time.

On our arrival to Beijing we were greeted by the lovely smiling face of our tour guide for the next 5-6 days, Jacky Wan. What he doesn't know about Beijing isn't worth knowing! He shared some of his wealth of knowledge during the bus ride in to our hotel, including some handy hints on how not to get scammed by the local market vendors. We were all a bit daunted by some of the stories he told of other tourists downfalls!

After a long days travel, we ventured out for a Chinese dinner to celebrate our arrival. We are realising that mime is a fantastic communication tool when spoken language fails us! We are all well and truly ready for a long sleep to prepare ourselves for the excitement that beckons. Tomorrows agenda - Tiananmen Square, Forbidden City and Peking Duck. Wow we can't wait!

Kylie and Sara

Highland Dance Company off to Shanghai Tourism Festival - 7th Sep 2012

“The Highland Dance Company of New Zealand leave for Beijing tonight where they will be involved in rehearsals, sightseeing and shopping before heading to Shanghai to perform in the Shanghai Tourism Festival.

In Beijing they will be visiting Tian’anmen Square, the National Centre for Performing Arts, the Forbidden city and a welcome dinner at the Famous Beijing Duck banquet, Great Wall of China at the Juyongguan section, The Summer Palace, and will be attending the amazing Beijing Acrobatic show, A pedi cab tour of the Hutong – the “old City” and will share a special lunch with a family in their home, and Tour the Temple of Heaven before travelling to Shanghai to commence preparations for the Festival.

Their itinerary for the festival is as follows:

September 14 – Rehearsals
September 15 – Opening Ceremony
September 16 – 2 x public performances – Najing Road and Jingan Hotel
September 17 – 1 public performance – Oriental Pearl Tower and then visit to the Tower

The Dance Company arrive home on September 19th.

On behalf of Executive and Academy members, we wish the group a safe and exciting trip and look forward to reading the daily blogs”

Life Members & 50 year members of Academy - 2nd Sep 2012

The  Paragraph  in the latest newsletter regarding the Dance Development Course was incorrect and should have read as follows:

"Life Members of the Academy and 50 year bar members will not be required to pay for the Dance Development Course if attending conference."

Please accept my sincere apologies


Dance Development Course timetable and Guest Tutor Biographies - 27th Aug 2012


22 & 23 SEPTEMBER 2012



1.30 p.m. - 3.30 p.m. Guest - Tania Huddart

3.30 p.m. - 4.30 p.m. Quiz


8.45 a.m. - 9.15 a.m. Warm up - Kelly Webster

9.15 a.m. - 10.15 a.m. Guest Tutor - Kelly Webster

19.15 a.m. - 10.30 a.m. Morning tea

10.30 a.m. - 11.30 a.m. Workshop 1

10.30 a.m. - 12.30 p.m. Workshop 2

12.30 p.m. - 1.15 p.m. Lunch

1.15 p.m - 2.15 p.m. Guest Tutor - Helen Inkster

2.15 p.m. - 3.00 p.m. Irish Reel

3.00 p.m. Special announcements & closure

Guest Tutors

Tania Huddart:
A studio dance and Pilates specialist based in Wellington, Tania started her career as a dance teacher working in South Africa and Europe.
She studied dance at the University of Cape Town, specialising in dance teaching initially and later gained a philosophy degree from the University of Durham with an emphasis on dance teaching methodology, psychology and design. For the past five years, utilising these specialist skills, Tania has worked with DANZ on developing dance teaching and studio specialist workshops. This process has included consultation with the dance community to meet needs and demand.
Tania taught ballet, character and contemporary dance at studio and vocational levels in South Africa, London (Arts Educational School), Stockholm and Wellington (Wellington Performing Arts Centre). Her interest in how the body works, lead her to study Pilates in London and New York and she is certified through the Pilates Method Alliance. Tania returned to Wellington to form Hearts and Bones Pilates Centre© in 2002 where she works with a large range of clients as well as training Pilates instructors.
Tania has a particular interest in teaching techniques and methodologies as well as combining anatomy, biomechanics and dance technique. She provided Pilates training as part of the health team at the New Zealand School of Dance from 2003-2006. She also works in teaching practice, injury rehabilitation and performance enhancement for dancers for a variety of dance
syllabus organisations and studios.
Helen Inskter:
Helen Inkster is a Registered Clinical Psychologist with eighteen years experience in a broad range of areas: criminal justice (prisons and probation service clients), intellectual disability, mental health (primary and secondary care), youth, alcohol and drug, Police trauma and clinical supervision of a variety of professions.

Helen was on the working party who put together the Code of Ethics for the Psychologists Board, has Chaired an Ethics Committee, been on the editorial committee for a professional magazine and is a current member of the Disciplinary Tribunal for Psychologists. Helen has had a busy and successful private practise for many years in Nelson.

Helen’s daughter’s interest in Highland brought her back into the fold after over 15 years “abstinence”. Helen has always had a love of teaching dance and finds this a perfect balance to the stressors inherent in her day job.

Kelly Webster
Kelly is a dancer, dance teacher and choreographer born and raised in Blenheim, NZ.
She began training at an early age in Ballet & Jazz dance with Jeannie Mark, branching out to include Lyrical, Contemporary, Hip Hop, Funk & Tap in later years.

After a year of full time study in Commercial Dance at the Wellington Performing Arts Centre (now Whitireia Performing Arts Centre), she embarked on a performance career overseas with Carnival Cruise Lines for two years as a dancer travelling throughout the Caribbean. One her return to NZ six years ago she took up a teaching position at Marlborough Dance Centre in
Blenheim where she trains students of all ages in Jazz, Hip Hop, Contemporary & Lyrical.

During her time back at home she has also run her own performance group the ‘KW Dancers’ as well as being involved in various shows as dancer and/or choreographer.

Earlier this year she was selected as a member of the New Zealand team and travelled to Los Angeles to compete at the Annual World Championships of Performing Arts where she made the finals and took out the title of ‘Senior Grand Champion Dancer of the World’ for 2012

Those participating in this workshop will just need to be in suitable attire to be able to move and any who don't like to lie on a hard floor could bring mats.  Bare feet or socks is fine, shoes are not required.  

Letter of thanks from Virginia Tattoo - 14th Aug 2012

The Executive has received a letter of thanks from the Virginia Arts Festival.
See Downloads for a copy of the letter and badge sent

Scholarships - 8th Aug 2012

Executive Council have sourced scholarships that are available for our members to attend workshops etc
See Downloads for the full list

NZ Academy Raffle - 12th Jul 2012

Winners of the NZ Academy raffle

1st  Jared Cropper - ticket number 1480
2nd Rhonda Andrew - ticket number 1052
3rd  Barbara Tait - ticket number 3479

Raffle was drawn on Sunday 08 July 2012 under the supervision of Justice of the Peace - Diane E Ayers

Thank you to all who supported us with our Raffle

The New Zealand Academy of Highland and National Dancing Inc., PO Box 5470, Palmerston North
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