The Friends THINK TANK Invitation

We feel that the best way to get feedback is from our members and to that end we’d like to ask whether you’re interested in joining a small group for about 2 hours on three separate occasions during the year?

The agenda and some questions will be supplied and the sessions chaired by a member of the committee.

Briefly, the get-togethers have been labelled as a ‘think tank’ and will be held in a meeting room at WAAPA during a week-day, for approximately two hours, in two to three-monthly intervals.

The only requirements are to be a financial member of the Friends of the Academy, and to be prepared to think laterally and to explore new ideas for fundraising and membership.

If you feel that you fit the bill and would like to participate, send an email with your name and a short note of about 100 or 150 words outlining why you’d like to be part of the Friends ‘think-tank’ for 2018.

The closing date for submissions will be Saturday 16 June at 9.00 am.

PLEASE NOTE: That only submissions via email will be accepted. Send emails to

WAAPA graduate returns to Mindarie Senior High School

Waapa dance teacher

Dance Teacher Pamela Konijn with Alumni Student Jessica Cruse and Collene Coote (In Orange). Photo, Matt Jelonek.


A WA Academy of Performing Arts (WAAPA) graduate recently returned to her high school to teach a student there.

Mindarie Senior College recruited Jessica Cruse, who finished at the school in 2012, to create a solo for current Year 12 student Colleen Coote.

“Jessica is a great success story for our dance department,” dance teacher Pamela Konijn said. “Jess completed a Bachelor of Arts (dance) at WAAPA, where they audition and take the top 18 dancers from the country for the course. “Jess was the ‘poster’ girl for her final year WAAPA showcase and the lead role in the ballet piece.”

Mrs Konijn said the former student went on to train at the Melbourne City Ballet and would embark on an audition tour of the USA in April.

“We love it here at MSC when past students come back to work in the college,” she said. “We currently have three teachers who are all ex-MSC alumni.”


Story by Community News

Pulse, a brilliant mix of contemporary works

Pulse is a showcase of cutting-edge contemporary dance from four groundbreaking international and Australian choreographers.


The program, to be performed by WAAPA’s 2nd and 3rd Year student dancers, includes works by Chinese choreographer Xianrong Xiao, Dutch choreographer Nils Christe, LINK Artistic Director Michael Whaites and WAAPA alumnus and ex-SDC dancer Kynan Hughes. Pulse will be performed in WAAPA’s Geoff Gibbs Theatre from Saturday 2nd May through to Friday 8th May at 7.30pm.


Renowned Chinese choreographer Xianrong Xiao brings his fluid and organic stylings to a new work that will be devised with the graduating dancers. Acclaimed Dutch choreographer Nils Christe and his co-assistant wife, Annegien Sneep, will remount Christe’s famous ballet, SYNC. This is the first time a student group has been given permission to remount this acclaimed piece.


Watch the Royal Swedish Ballet perform SYNC in this 2011 video –


SYNC is a fast paced, high voltage piece that combines both classical and modern dance techniques, for a cast of nine women on point and three men,” says Christe. “Originally created for the Washington Ballet, this will be the first time that a school will perform parts from the original 45-minute piece.”

“The WAAPA 3rd Year dancers are very versatile, and they are picking up on the style and movements extremely well. We are all excited about bringing SYNC to the stage here in Perth.”

Completing the Pulse program will be works by local LINK Artistic Director, Michael Whaites and WAAPA alumnus and ex-SDC dancer, Kynan Hughes.



GEOFF GIBBS THEATRE, ECU, 2 Bradford St, Mount Lawley

Tickets $25 / $20 Concession and Friends

Sat 2, Mon 4, Tues 5, Wed 6, Thurs 7, Fri 8 May, 7.30pm

Performed by: WAAPA 2nd and 3rd Year Dance students

Choreographers: Nils Christe, Xianrong Xiao, Michael Whaites, Kynan Hughes

BOOK NOW: Tel: (08) 9370 6895 or online at:


Alexandre Da Costa and Friends. WAAPA Music Auditorium. 17 April – Reproduced Review by Neville Cohn, West Australian, Saturday 18 April.

Fascinating fare which ranged from the profoundly moving to the delightfully ridiculous ensured an altogether engrossing evening of chamber music.

Violinist Alexandre Da Costa, Micheal Goldschlager (cello) and Anna Sleptsova (piano) gave an account of Shostakovich’s Piano Trio No 2 which riveted the attention. Written in 1944 in the aftermath of the Nazi’s siege of Leningrad, the work is the apotheosis of bitterness, despair and anger beyond anger – and the players did wonders in evoking the confronting harshness of much of the writing.

Relentless pounding piano chords and ear-grating dissonance on violin and cello – plus pizzicato that sounded as if ripped from violin and cello – brought us face to face with the composer.

At the other end of the mood scale is Bohuslav Martinu’s insouciant La Revue de Cuisine, music for a ballet about, of all things, kitchen implements. It’s delightful material, presented with panache by the Indian Ocean Ensemble, a newly established group of senior WAAPA students under the guidance of Da Costa.

These young player did well in conveying the essence of this tongue-in-cheek music. It is perhaps invidious to single out individuals but it would be ungracious not to mention the skill of Madeleine Antoine violin, Natalya Czernicziw (bassoon) and pianist Ryan Davies. Earlier we heard Martinu’s serenade and a movement from a divertimento by Joseph Haydn’s brother Michael.

This was in impressive debut by the Indian Ocean Ensemble.

As a curtain-raiser, we listened to Da Costa and Goldschlager in Norwegian composer Johan Halvorsen’s reworking of a Handel Passacaglia.

Chris Edmund

WAAPA and the Friends of The Academy present an intimate evening with WAAPA’s Head of Acting, Christopher Edmund.

Esteemed Australian Actress and Educator, Angela Punch-McGregor, will interview Chris about his life and times, interspersed with vision, interviews and reminisces from some famous friends and with a CV like Chris Edmund’s this will make for a thoroughly entertaining evening full of thrills, spills and laughter.

To view the West’ article, please click here

Assistant Conductor – Christopher Dragon Announced as Assistant Conductor for WASO

In 2011 Christopher began his conducting studies with Chris Van Tuinen, a former Opera Australia conductor. After completing his Bachelor of Music in clarinet at the WA Academy of Performing Arts (WAAPA) with WASO Principal Clarinet Allan Meyer, and winning the WA Youth Orchestra’s Woodside Concerto Competition in 2011, he decided to shift his focus and is currently working towards an honours in conducting. Christopher is a member of the Symphony Services International Conductor Development Program through which he has worked with the Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra and Auckland Philharmonia, under the guidance of course director Christopher Seaman.

Christopher’s profile as a conductor is expanding internationally. Last year he was invited as a conducting fellow to the Pacific Music Festival in Japan by Fabio Luisi, the Principal Conductor of The Metropolitan Opera. This year he will be participating in numerous courses overseas including the Järvi Winter Academy in Estonia, with Leonid Grin and a master class in the Czech Republic with Jorma Panula, former head of conducting studies at the Sibelius Academy.

Christopher has firm roots in WA community ensembles and is Musical Director of the Metropolitan Symphony Orchestra, the South Side Symphony Orchestra, OperaBox and the Leeming Area Concert Band. For the first half of 2013 Christopher will be conducting the WA Youth Orchestra’s Philharmonic Orchestra as well as WAAPA’s Faith Court Orchestra. In 2011 he co-founded his own orchestra, the Swan Philharmonic, an orchestra that combines professional players with the next generation of orchestral musicians.
The Assistant Conductor position is supported by the Simon Lee Foundation and Symphony Services International.