Melanie van Voornveld

Melanie van Voornveld

Dance Adjudicator

QLD

Dance Adjudicator

Melanie has been dancing since she was 4 years of age, Melanie has completed many successful examinations both in grade a major examination levels, with RAD, AJDA, NZAMD and ISTD. Studying all aspects of the performing arts right up until the age of 17.

At 17 Melanie left home to start her in-depth full-time studies. Completing her Certificate in performance dance with a minor in Drama, Melanie went onto East Auckland Performing Arts. It was here she had 3 full years to study every aspect of the performing arts industry. On completion of
these three years Melanie had achieved the following: Diploma of Dance Teaching Practices, Diploma of Performance Dance Techniques, I.S.T.D. Modern Theatre Dance Associate Diploma and I.S.T.D. Full Teaching Membership.

Melanie then moved to Melbourne Australia where she completed one year of in-depth Commercial Dance studies. Since the age of 15 Melanie has had a keen eye for teaching dance, she has prepared multiple students successfully for examinations with excellent results. Melanie is also an Affiliate member of the ATOD.

Melanie has proven herself to be a passionate, educated and unbiased dance teacher and Adjudicator, with multiple Adjudication bookings under her belt, with successful improvement of students following competitions.

She will be the perfect addition to any competition who absolutely loves what she does.

Melanie has recently moved to Townsville north Queensland and is happy to travel should your competition require it.

Melanie also has completed her Transit dance Adjudication Certificate, which provided in-depth training from industry professionals.


Please get in touch today.

Rhana Harley

Rhana Harley

Dance Adjudicator

QLD

Rhana has been dancing since 4 years of age, from passing beginners grade BDA examinations in classical ballet, jazz ballet and tap dance.  At the age of 17, a fully accredited teacher in all genres of dance with both BDA and Star Academies.

Throughout her performing career, she has won countless awards and championships at  eisteddfods across country New South Wales including Highland dance competitions, she’s also accomplished in recitation, public speaking, debating, and vocal solo sections.

Rhana is an accredited, accomplished and devoted teacher with over 30 years experience, basing her local operations at Gunnedah, Narrabri and many small country centers, bringing Dance to the bush! (Gunnedah Dance Academy, Rhana’s Dance Academy and RAD DANCE.)

Rhana has prepared many successful examination students under the BDA, choreographing concerts and special displays within the community, such as:(school rock eisteddfod, dance festival entries, fashion parades, debutante balls and Civic fundraising events.)

Rhana has students who have attained teacher status and are now conducting their own academies being accepted into the Australian ballet schools, Dance troupes and NIDA.

Her devotion and love of Dance cannot be understated with her old flaming passion undying.

Multi talented performer, teacher, choreographer, and aspiring adjudicator having a wonderful rapport with younger students, seniors/adults alike.

After relocating to the Gold Coast Queensland; she looks forward to adjudicating at eisteddfods and dance competitions once her training has been completed

Karen Perring

Karen Perring

Dance Adjudicator

QLD

Karen Perring is a freelance dance teacher, adjudicator, examiner, and tutor with a passion for all performing arts, living on the Gold Coast in Queensland.

Career Highlights

Karen has over 30 years of teaching experience throughout Australia and London U.K.  teaching ballet, contemporary, jazz, musical theatre and tap.  During that time, she has been a dance studio owner and a freelance teacher.

She is a registered teacher and examiner with the Royal Academy of Dance, examining students throughout Australia and internationally.

Karen has mentored and coached many students to a professional level including to some of the most prestigious dance schools, companies and shows in the world.  She has been a part of many productions including ballets, musicals and shows in Australia and the U.K. in the capacity as a dancer, choreographer, dance captain and stage management.

Adjudicating experience

Karen’s vast experience with many competitions in Australia and the UK includes as a competitor, a Mum, teacher, choreographer, scribe, and adjudicator. Many past students have achieved success in eisteddfods and prestigious competitions, going on to successful careers in the industry.  Karen’s passion is to share her knowledge, experience, and love for the performing arts, by giving encouraging and constructive feedback to future performers.

Education and training

After training with many renowned teachers in Queensland, Karen gained her Advanced and Teacher’s Certificate with the RAD, then went on to achieve a Diploma in Dance Teaching & Management and Certificate IV in Training and Assessment.   She now delivers and assesses the Certificate in Dance, Musical Theatre, Dance Teaching & Management and Diploma of Professional Dance (Elite Performance). Teaching these courses demonstrates Karen’s knowledge and extensive experience in all genres to a professional level.  She most recently studied the Rambert Contemporary Grades UK.

Performance Credits

Karen enjoyed a successful performance career in various styles including television appearances, corporate events, musical theatre and performances in classical ballet and contemporary companies.  Some of these include Ray Martin Midday show, Momentum Dance Company, Expo 88, Magic Mountain show entertainer and Brisbane Broncos cheer squad inaugural dancer.

With an understanding of all ages and experience, Karen is honoured to be a part of nurturing the next generation of performers. Her motto is “Dance is for everyone”.

Nicci Hope

Nicci Hope

Dance Adjudicator

QLD

Nicci Hope’s professional musical theatre credits include :

  • 42nd St, South Pacific, Sunset Boulevard, Kismet (Victorian State Opera)
  • Die Meistersinger of Nuremberg (Australian Opera),
  • Boy from Oz, Chicago (role of Hungarian), Gypsy, Carousel (lead role of Carrie Pipperidge), A chorus line (lead role of Cassie), Tivoli (Sydney dance Company),
  • Storm (Lead role/singer, Jupiters Casino), Hanky Panky (lead role dancer/singer, Tivoli Theatre).

TV credits include:

  • Several guest roles on Neighbours,
  • channel 7’s Man O Man (dancer/model),
  • Halifax,
  • Feds,
  • host of kids TV show Teleclub,
  • Don Lane dancer,
  • Hey Hey its Saturday,
  • Ray Martin show, and
  • Take 40 TV show as a dancer.

Film credits include Pirates of the Caribbean, Thor, and the Marine.

Nicci holds R.A.D advanced and is qualified with C.S.T.D. and has also taught A.T.O.D.

Nicci has worked in all fields of the industry including teaching, choreography, singing and acting and modelling. She has worked closely with many brilliant performers both in Australia and overseas including Hugh Jackman.

Nicci is currently a freelance choreographer for all genres of dance and is adjudicating throughout Australia. Nicci also is a director for schools in Musical theatre. Having run her own dance school for many years in the past she knows the hard work that goes into competitions and is looking forward to adjudicating yours!

Peta-Maree Jacobsen

Peta-Maree Jacobsen

Dance Adjudicator

QLD

Peta-Maree Jacobsen commenced her dance training in Brisbane before relocating to Bundaberg. At the age of 12, Peta-Maree began student teaching at her local studio.

Her love of teaching pupils of all ages and abilities developed quickly and she continued on teaching whilst taking her own classes and completing her examinations through the RAD and STD syllabus. While studying dance she also studied Speech and Drama, and Musical Theatre and successfully sat exams with the Trinity College of London. In 2006 Peta-Maree opened her own dance studio in Bundaberg. It didn’t take long before the small studio boomed into a highly successful Academy, with students that started making their mark in the local dance scene. Peta-Maree continues to direct and teach her students and is very proud of their outstanding achievements. Peta-Maree Jacobsen is a member of the ATOD organisation. Peta is a certified Acrobatic Arts instructor and holds a Certificate IV in Dance Teaching and Management. She is constantly undertaking training and workshops to improve her knowledge and skills in the industry.

Peta-Maree is excited to adjudicate students and offers an honest helpful critique in a positive and encouraging manner that will be helpful to both students and teachers.

Olivia Hill

Olivia Hill

Dance Adjudicator

QLD

Introduction

I have had extensive experience in many fields of performing arts and enjoy using my knowledge and skills to help and encourage eisteddfod performers. I have adjudicated at many competitions around Australia and had excellent feedback from performers, parents and competition organisers.

I am fast, efficient and I work very hard to ensure my comments (either spoken or written) are positive and encouraging, but also constructive, so students and parents feel they have learnt something from the experience. I also make a huge effort to explain to families what I am looking for in each section and to justify my awards. I have found this leads to excellent satisfaction levels from  amilies and audience members as they understand exactly why I have given awards.

I understand the difficulties of finding an adjudicator with knowledge in all areas of dance and I personally work very hard to maintain excellent knowledge across all different dance genres as well as singing, acrobatics and performance. My school teaches a huge variety of genres, I attend a great deal of local theatre and each year I also travel to New York or London to see all the latest theatre and dance shows there.

Adjudication Experience 

Bileola Drama 2021

Gold Coast Drama 2021

Townsville Dance 2021

Mackay Drama 2021

LTK Drama 2022

Goondiwindi Drama 2022

FNQ Dance 2022

Reach Dance 2022

Gladstone Drama 2023

Lismore Dance 2023

Other Employment

Module Tutor Royal Academy of Dance Teachers Certificate -2011 to present

Practical Teaching Supervisor Royal Academy of Dance Teachers Certificate – 2011 to present

Practical Teaching Supervisor Royal Academy of Dance Teachers Diploma – 2019-present

Entertainment manager – Song and Dance shows – Brisbane Markets Rocklea 2019

Teaching Experience

I have run a theatre school for 30 years training students in speech and drama, singing, classical ballet, jazz, tap and hip hop dance as well as acrobatics, musical theatre and performance. Past students are employed all over the world as well as playing lead roles in Australian musicals and theatre. Students take part in dance, drama and theatresports competitions, plays, pantomimes, concerts and USA tours.

Education and Training

Trinity College London Associate Trinity College London 1994
Trinity College London Licentiate Trinity College London 1996
Queensland University of Technology Bachelor of Arts 1998
CSTD Modern Jazz Teachers Certificate 2007
CSTD Tap Teachers Diploma 2003
CSTD Theatrical Teachers Diploma 2002
CSTD Jazz Award (Honours Plus) 1999

Royal Academy of Dance Grade Eight Award 1998
Royal Academy of Dance Teachers Certificate 2006

Membership of Professional Bodies/Associations

Trinity College London (Licentiate)
Commonwealth Society of Teachers of Dancing (Member)
Royal Academy of Dance (Member)

Kiara Watkin

Kiara Watkin

Dance Adjudicator

QLD

Born and raised in North Queensland, Kiara studied all genres of performing arts including classical ballet (RAD), tap (CSTD), modern jazz (CSTD), contemporary, hip hop, acrobatics, speech and drama, music theatre and voice. She competed successfully in competitions around Australia and New Zealand.

Upon graduating, she relocated to Melbourne to pursue her career as a professional dancer. Kiara attained her Advanced Diploma in Dance at the Australian Conservatoire of Ballet and her Diploma in Music Theatre under the direction of Kelly Aykers. She has performed around the world in many theatre productions, music videos, television commercials and at corporate events. Her highlight has been performing at theme parks across Asia.

Kiara has studied film/television and modelling which saw her appearing regularly in TV shows such as ‘Neighbours’ and ‘The Doctor Blake Mysteries.’ Kiara also represented Australia in London at ‘Top Model Worldwide.’

Kiara has attained her Certificate IV in Pilates and Fitness and is a qualified personal trainer and reformer pilates instructor. She is now a devoted Pilates instructor, dance teacher and adjudicator, with over 10 years of dance experience and a diverse set of skills across teaching and performing. Kiara absolutely loves the performing arts industry and passing on her knowledge, experience and passion to the next generation of performers.

Nicky Manego

Nicky Manego

Dance Adjudicator

QLD

Nicky has been involved in the Performing Arts Industry for many years
as a student, performer, teacher, choreographer, event manager and adjudicator.

As a performer, Nicky toured Australia and internationally in many shows as a
dancer/singer and model. Her list of credits is expansive however, highlights include The Jackie Love Show, The Magic Millions Gala (New Zealand & Kentucky, USA), Royal Bicentennial Concert (Sydney), Queensland Day Concert (World Expo), the musicals Evita (Sydney) and Swing (Barcelona), the Australian Film Industry Awards and numerous Corporate Events and television show appearances.

Nicky trained through the RAD and CSTD Syllabi and also studied at ‘The Ross Coleman Performing Arts Studios’ (Sydney) and ‘Pineapple Dance Studios’
(London). Years spent studying, performing and perfecting her craft has ensured proficiency in all dance styles and vocals.

As a teacher/choreographer, Nicky has had many years of experience
both teaching and mentoring students of all ages in a variety of dance genres in private Dance Studios and Educational Schools. She has created choreographic pieces for performance teams, duos, trios and solos, National Sports Acrobatics Teams, Fashion and Hair Shows. She has all choreographed small and massed production items for the ‘Creative Generation State Schools on Stage Spectacular’.

As a performing arts adjudicator, Nicky believes that she is priviledged to witness first-hand, the ever-evolving art of Dance and Performance and relishes the opportunity to inspire and encourage young performers to reach their full potential and shine in their own unique way.

Nicky’s favourite Quote by Mikhail Baryshnikov is one that she has believed in and shared with young performers for many years:
“I do not try to dance better than anyone else. I only try to dance better than myself.”

Maria Shanks

Maria Shanks

Dance Adjudicator

QLD

Maria Shanks

Born into a dance family Maria began dancing from a very early age.

During her dance training she was fortunate enough to study under the very best teachers in Australia in all facets of dance. Her family was the driving force in her dance career and with a certain amount of talent was encouraged and easily gained all dance qualifications. Teaching dance was Maria’s career path & by the age of 21 years was fully qualified with COMDANCE (CSTD) (4 Diplomas), the ROYAL ACADEMY OF DANCE (Registered Teacher), and was the director of her own dance studio on the Sunshine Coast in Queensland, which successfully operated for 35years. Many students have been successful in the dance industry under her tutorage.

Such was her passion to be the very best dance teacher, she was encouraged to train to become an “Examiner” for COMDANCE (CSTD) which is an examination syllabus that covers Classical Ballet, Jazz, Hip Hop, Tap, Musical Theatre, Contemporary, Lyrical & Acrobatics. Maria has been an Examiner for 28years and loves travelling throughout Australia & overseas in this role.

Adjudication was a natural progression; Maria has been actively involved in the competition scene. Competitions develop student’s confidence and performance skills, not to mention they are so much “fun” for those who love the social aspects of dancing with friends and meeting new people with similar interests. Maria has adjudicated many dance competitions in the past but most recently has been lucky enough to adjudicate The North Coast Dance festival, The Port Macquarie Dance Eisteddfod (Groups) & The Mt. Isa Irish Club Eisteddfod. Maria is also the President of the Sunshine Coast Dance Eisteddfod which is one of Queensland’s longest running, premier, competitions.

Maria still teaches actively at the Conroy Dance Centre in Brisbane. She feels as a dance Mother, Teacher, Adjudicator, Examiner & Competition Convenor she understands dance from a very broad perspective.

In Recent years she has been the Tutor for many Dancers/Teachers Workshops in Indonesia, East & West Malaysia, Singapore, China, Brunei and in the United Kingdom. In 2019 Maria gained Life Member status with the Royal Academy of Dance.

Maria feels very fortunate to have had a long and successful dance career, loves passing on her knowledge and encouraging the art of dance to the many dancers of today.

“It’s time to give back to an industry that has been so close to my heart and given me so much joy!”

Taylor Hey

Taylor Hey

Dance Adjudicator

QLD

Taylor was born in Queensland, studying and developing her passion for all dance genres from a young age in RAD, CSTD and Acrobatic Arts syllabi. Her full-time studies in Melbourne saw her work with many world-class mentors and she was involved with several pre-professional Tap, Musical theatre and classical/contemporary productions.

Taylor had returned back to her hometown in North Queensland and is a faculty member with Central Queensland University teaching numerous styles of dance for the Bachelor of Musical Theatre. Taylor holds extensive knowledge of the dance industry as a performer, choreographer and technique teacher with a versatile skill set in all genres of dance and performance. Taylor is now employed as a resident teacher in North Queensland but also freelances to choreograph and mentor.

Taylor’s love for dance has taken her all around Australia and overseas. Appearing at the Industry Dance Awards in Los Angeles as a special guest in 2019. Taylor has been successful in guiding her students for the past 10 years with many of her past students now dancing, choreographing and teaching professionally. Most of her family are involved in the dance industry. In fact, her whole family are either engaged in theatre either on stage or behind the scenes.

Taylor feels very fortunate to be able to pass on her knowledge and love of dance.