New Zealand School of Dance

New Zealand School of Dance

+64 4 381 9252



New Zealand School of Dance
New Zealand School of Dance
Contemporary Dance Student Lucy Chung


New Zealand Diploma in Dance (2 years full-time). This course sits at Level 6 on the NZ
Qualifications Framework.

New Zealand School of Dance Diploma in Dance Performance (3 years full-time). This course sits at Level 7 on the NZ Qualifications Framework (equivalent to an undergraduate degree).

The full-time tertiary programmes offered by the New Zealand School of Dance (NZSD) are aimed at developing the qualities essential for professional dancers: strong technique, musicality, coordination and dedication to the art form. NZSD students major in either classical ballet or contemporary dance, but maintain a strong base in their minor discipline.

The NZSD has an outstanding faculty of dance teaching staff. Guest tutors from around the world and specialists in anatomy, dance history, sports medicine, nutrition, physiotherapy, strength and conditioning, yoga and pilates round out the holistic training.

The School's impressive purpose built facilities house nine dance studios, a 160 seat theatre, specialist performing arts library, pilates/GYROTONIC? and physiotherapy rooms. Students have full access to a state-of-the-art gym and have weekly training sessions with a personal trainer. The School is Official School of the Royal New Zealand Ballet. Excellent secondment opportunities are available through the School's relationships with leading ballet and contemporary dance companies around the world.

NZSD has between 85-100 full-time students and in addition, runs aspirational programmes for younger dancers. NZSD is funded by the Ministry of Education through the Tertiary Education
Commission and is registered with the NZ Qualifications Authority (NZQA).

Main subjects:

Classical ballet, contemporary dance. Allied subjects: nutrition, yoga, pilates, anatomy, music and dance history. For classical majors - pas de deux, repertoire, pointe, virtuosic coaching, choreography, For contemporary majors - partnering, improvisation, repertoire, yoga and choreography.

Practical dance classes per week:

30-40 hours.

Contact hours per day:

8.30 - 5.45 (Monday to Friday) and 8.30 - 12.30 (Saturdays).
More hours may be required at certain times.

Pre-requisites/ entry requirements:

Students are usually 16 to 18 years old when entering the full-time course. Preference will be given to students who have attained NCEA Level 1 (Yr 11 NZ or Yr 10 Australia) and who have reached a level in classical ballet equivalent to RAD Advanced 1 (IDTA Advanced level 1, BBO
Advanced 1, Cecchetti Advanced 1, BAL Intermediate). Students are required to understand conversational English. Auditions will be held in Wellington, New Zealand. Candidates who are unable to audition in person are encouraged to participate in the NZSD Digital Auditions.

Main teachers:

Garry Trinder (director), Paula Steeds-Huston, Tony Westway Christine Gunn, Holly Newsome, Medhi Angot,
Nadine Tyson, Turid Revfeim, Maksim Temnikov, Gina Andrews and Xavier Breed plus
international guest teachers throughout the year.

Audition date:

Digital: 3 September. Live auditions: 2, 7, 8 & 9 October

Audition requirements:

Candidates must complete an application form online at, and pay an audition fee, to secure an audition. The audition consists of a classical technique class and a contemporary technique class. An interview with the audition panel or orthopaedic examination may also be required.

Approx. NZ$ 8,800 + student services levy (subject to confirmation)

Scholarships or subsidies:

Several Scholarships may be available to students who have successfully completed at least one year of study at NZSD, on the grounds of financial hardship.

Possible career options:

Most graduates enter careers in dance performance, around 70% of students gaining contracts within six months of graduating. Recent graduates are dancing with Akram Khan Company (UK), Atamira (NZ), The Australian Ballet (AU), Australian Dance Theatre (AU),Ballet Arizona (US), Black Grace (NZ), Co:3 Australia (AU), Dancenorth (AU), English National Ballet (UK), Footnote New Zealand Dance (NZ), Hofesh Shechter II (UK), Houston Ballet (US), Java Dance Company (NZ), Kibbutz Contemporary Dance Company (IL), Leipzig Ballet (DE), The National Ballet of Canada (CA), New Zealand Dance Company (NZ), Queensland Ballet (AU), Rambert (UK), Royal New Zealand Ballet (NZ), The Sarasota Ballet (US), Singapore Dance Theatre (SG), Studio Wayne McGregor (UK), Sydney Dance Company (AU), Th?ringer Staatsballett (DE), The Washington Ballet (US), West Australian Ballet (AU) New Zealand School of Dance alumni also work in related fields such as physiotherapy, dance teaching, pilates instruction, arts administration, research, dance notation, dance film, photography and journalism.

A Student’s Perspective:

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