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Celebrating Our 2020 Podcasts!

Posted by Team APATA | Jan 21, 2021

Dear 2020, what can we say? In spite of the challenges and tough times we were able to celebrate not only our first birthday but introduce our very first APATA National Awards Program, with six special winners. We had Will Centurion talk to teachers about how to support themselves and their students through COVID lockdown learning. We opened the APATA Digital Library with Filmmakers Tina Brown and Matt Peterson ACS as interviewed by Richard Fabb, Senior Lecturer from Griffith Film School. And we were able to be a part of the Creative Economy Forum thanks to The Larrikin Collective – a presentation and discussion on the future of creative arts in Australia which will hopefully be an ongoing discussion as we embrace a changing global society.

We also had the chance to meet and speak with some inspiring teachers and industry practitioners with our debut APATA Podcast. Because we all have a story of how we came across the performing arts, whether through dance classes, piano teachers or drama class, everyone of us found our way to our place here and now. We have transitioned from the student trying to find their way to the passionate creator and educator. We have discovered that through our own cultural and personal perspectives we have stories and knowledge that deserve to be emboldened. we also love that each of us have teachers and mentors who have imbued us with words and work ethics that still motivate us today and that we can share that inspiration with the next generation.

From Stage to the Classroom with Nat Hammond

Born in Coonabarabran, Natalie began her dance training on the Gold Coast where she was a Star Dust Junior studying tap, jazz and musical theatre. In 1995, Natalie joined the Queensland Ballet and won critical acclaim for a variety of principal roles. These included Tough Girl in Antony Tudors “Echoing of Trumpets”, Lilac Fairy in “The Sleeping Beauty”, Myrtha, Queen of the Willis in “Giselle”, Sugar Plum Fairy in “The Nutcracker” and Helena in “A Midsummer Night’s Dream”. She was also a member of the company during their highly successful coast-to-coast tour of the United States. Nat is a choreographer and ballet teacher at 2ballerinas and a passionate advocate of dance and ambassador of happiness.

Arts Resilience with Angela Loh

From an industry-led education at QUT [Queensland University of Technology] in stage management and technical production, Angela was more that able to step into roles in the corporate sector, musical theatre and opera learning valuable life lessons along the way. Angela is the Managing Producer of Camerata – Queensland’s Chamber Orchestra. The Camerata aims to empower artists, inspire audiences and enrich communities through music and where Angela finds herself in a passionate, community-minded, collaborative arts company that she truly loves.

Upping the Game with Sally Andrew

As Director of Radiance Academy Toowoomba, winner of the 2020 APATA Performing Arts Private Studio of the Year award, Sally Andrew has raised a family and built a thriving business and community of fun and learning through her passion for dance. With an early adoration and devotion to everything dance, one set back threw Sally for a loop causing her to leave dance and follow a more tried and tested path into business. But once a dancer always a dancer and sally found a way to combine the two with her family-based multi-award winning studio for dancers aged 18months to 80 plus. Interviewed by fellow dance enthusiast Nat Hammond, Sally proves yet again that with a passion for the arts you can create your future on your own terms.

Sensorium Theatre with Frankie Italiano

No strangers to APATA Frankie Italiano and Michelle Hovane’s dedication in creating Australia’s leading multi-sensory theatre for children is just one of the reasons they received the 2020 APATA Social Change Maker award among other accolades last year. We had to let our listeners hear the enthusiasm and heart that beams out of Frankie. With Michelle and their team at Sensorium they not only bring accessible and inclusive theatre to special needs children and their circles of support, but they immerse them in it, bringing alive their senses and eliciting responses that bring a tear to the eye. Frankie’s life lessons from his mentors are as much a part of Sensorium Theatre as they are a part of him and we continue to be inspired by their work and love for what they do.

You’ve Got This – Wellbeing and the Performing Arts with Will Centurion

If you’ve ever chased a dream and made it a reality, there may comes a point down the track when that reality comes crashing down. As a professional performer in the Music Theatre industry, Will had been on stage and in the rehearsal room for 20 years working the national and international touring circuit on productions including – A Chorus Line, West Side Story, The King and I, The Lion King, Aladdin and In The Heights. After an incredible career there came a point when things needed to change. Living out of a suitcase just wasn’t going to cut it anymore. He sought help from a former opera singer turned Psychologist and in turn found his new direction. As a Counsellor and Life Coach for actors, singers and dancers, Will keeps performers connected to their passion, creativity and purpose. Working with students, teachers and performers Will is able to use his first hand experience to truly understand the hurdles and challenges of those in the creative arts and is a true star in our eyes.

All From the Heart with Jonny Ng

Jonny Ng is a little bit of a phenom –

He is a true believer in the holistic benefits of music education and appreciation and works tirelessly to create valuable connections, not only for his students but for communities as a whole. “At Camerata we’re committed to furthering the opportunities for music students & teachers throughout Queensland with a real focus on the communities that we visit through our annual touring program.” Interviewed by Camerata’s Managing Producer, Angela Loh, conversation flows from Jonny’s love of violin and piano from an early age to the spine-tingling moments he felt as a new member of the Queensland Youth Orchestra. Understanding that having something to fall back on wouldn’t hurt he gained a degree in pharmacy, but he hasn’t had to call upon it since music did indeed win out! A great chat and an outstanding role model for the young people with a calling to the arts.

Connecting Education to Industry with Richard Fabb

When your own hands-on, industry-led education readies you for any and every opportunity that comes your way, you inevitably want that same experience for the next up and coming generation. BAFTA and Royal Television Society award-winning producer and Creative Director of LiveLab, the commercial production arm of Griffith Film School and Senior Lecturer Richard Fabb was made for the challenge. Richard’s teaching ethos is a result of both his student and work life being imbued by teachers and colleagues who were in the game. Not only working as educators but practising industry participants. Talking to Jason Raft, Richard shares valuable insights into what industry wants from students, graduates and interns. Why building industry relationships while you study is integral to entering the creative workforce and how he navigated his way through a career in film and television. Great listening for school leavers!

The Pride of Polynesia with Heimana Tahiata

A childhood spent surrounded by cultural performers criss-crossing the world sharing their heritage through song was totally normal for Heimana Tahiata. Like, doesn’t everybody spend their days in rehearsal and nights in a guitar case by the stage? Being exposed to the richness of Polynesian culture and with the family finally settling in Australia, Heimana decided that not only should his siblings have that experience but he could create that for the ever-expanding Pasifika diaspora who also call Australia home. With wife Leilani, Heilani Polynesian School of Arts shares Pacific dance, fitness, music, arts & crafts, costume-making and more with the local communities of Brisbane and the Gold Coast. “For us, what we do is more than just an artform. It goes so much deeper because you’re talking about a people and a culture not just a dance. That artform is actually a part of who we are.” Yet another testament to the influence of incidental teachers and mentors, who simply by living their lives and leading by example, formed such an impression on a young person that they would go on to become not only a great performer but a great teacher and community leader.

Yarrabil Girrebah: Singing Indigenous Language Alive with Candace Kruger

  • Proud Kombumerri and Ngugi woman
  • Choirmaster for Yugambeh Youth Choir
  • Director of Yugambeh Youth Aboriginal Corporation
  • Head of Department for Indigenous Education -Beenleigh High School
  • 26 year Music Educator
  • Author of Yugambeh Talga – with Patricia O’Connor and Ysola Best
  • Songwriter and composer
  • PhD candidate – Griffith University
  • Yugambeh Songwoman

With 26 years as a music educator, choirmaster and currently Head of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Perspectives for Beenleigh High School, Candace is also the director of the Yugambeh Youth Choir, teaching Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children language and culture within song. With her PhD work – Yarrabil Girrebah as a template, Yugambeh Songwoman Candace Kruger hopes that others will take up the baton for their own communities, seeking the songlines for their language region and working with elders to also sing their language alive.

Woven Words with MC Trey

A pioneering female MC of the Australian hip hop scene, MC Trey is no stranger to taking leaps of faith. If moving from Fiji to Parramatta as a thirteen year old wasn’t enough, try stepping up to the mic sharing culture, positivity and femininity in a male dominated arena. Engaging youth and her community with music, Trey seeks ways to make connections and allow kids to share their stories and be heard. Accepting their differences and embracing the many facets of living in a multicultural society that needs its champions. Trey is cool , calm and collected on the mic and in a boardroom and she shares her journey and guidance for those feeling less than perfect.

Culture, Connection and the Performing Arts with Janay Tauri

Though not a podcast, we considered Janay’s interview for an APATA Article to be yet another lesson on how claiming your heritage and immersing yourself in the traditional language and performing arts of your people can create a pathway to success in the arts. Working for Te Matatini Kapahaka Aotearoa – New Zealand’s elite Māori performing arts festival Janay’s fluency in te reo Māori and skills in traditional Kapa Haka has created opportunity after opportunity. Not only as a performer overseas but in Film and Television in New Zealand. Some kids may wonder whether learning their mother tongue will help with getting a job , but for Janay her work has always stemmed from her connection to culture.

A highlight of this year, though also not a podcast was Tina Brown and Matt Peterson ACS’ interview for the APATA Digital Library. Hosted by Richard Fabb the two shared their stories from BNE to NYC and their many adventures as filmmakers. With a wealth of information and inspiration up their sleeves Tina and Matt had plenty of advice for those wanting to make it in not only the film industry but in any creative field. We hope to be a little like them when we grow up.

Our podcast and interviewees from 2020 are just like you and me. Everyone has a story. Everyone has somebody they’ve looked up to and emulated. Everyone has some gold pieces of wisdom from lessons well learnt. APATA is for teachers and educators developing the future of our industry whether in front or behind the curtain. What’s your story? Want to be on the APATA Podcast or would like to nominate someone you believe has a story to share. Send through your info or suggestions to hello@apata.com.au or upload to your members dashboard. We are all ears!!!




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