Dancers at the Whangārei Academy of Dance and Performing Arts, which is celebrating its ruby anniversary – that’s 40 years of performances – on December 2-3.
The Whangārei Academy of Dance and Performing Arts is about to celebrate 40 years of performing with two days of shows at Forum North.
The students and staff of Whangārei Academy of Dance & Performing Arts (WADPA) are preparing for their summer shows at Forum North in a celebratory year.
WADPA was established in 1977 and their first show at Forum North was in 1982, so a 40-year, or ruby anniversary, will be celebrated with their shows on December 2 and 3.
In those 40 years, thousands of local children have learnt to dance with WADPA and enjoyed performing at the summer shows.
Disciplines taught at WADPA in their studios on Commerce St and featured in the shows are ballet, jazz, lyrical, tap, contemporary acrobatics and musical theatre, as well as baby ballet for the little ones.
WADPA students and their teacher Kaneisha McKenzie recently travelled to Palmerston North for the New Zealand Performing Arts Competition, a prestigious contest that can only be entered by groups that have been nominated. This year there were more than 85 groups attending from throughout New Zealand.
WADPA’s ruby anniversary shows will be held at the Capitaine Bougainville Theatre at Forum North on Friday, December 2 from 6pm and on Saturday, December 3, from 1pm and 6pm. Around 230 children and young people from more than 200 families will be performing.
Holly Duder-Joy started teaching at WADPA in 2006 and took over as principal of the studio in 2015.
“I’m incredibly proud of all our students and my staff, who have worked so hard this year to bounce back from the disappointments of the Covid years. We are so excited to be celebrating our ruby anniversary with our latest show and can’t wait to delight our audiences with some fantastic performances,’’ Duder-Joy said.
‘’We’re so grateful to all our families who have supported our local business through the difficult Covid years and look forward to seeing you all at the show.”