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Mixing it up with pros at Vodafone Events Centre

Mixing it up with pros at Vodafone Events Centre

Attending a dance, drama or visual arts workshop at Vodafone Events Centre makes the difference for school students of all ages – opening their eyes to a world of artistic breaks.

When the 2014 Schools Programme was announced Tangaroa College’s Head of Dance and Drama, David Riley, quickly enrolled his students in the workshops.

It’s lucky Mr Riley jumped at the chance because every workshop is already fully booked and schools are on waiting lists.

For the past four years the proactive teacher has immersed his youthful charges in the different workshops Vodafone Events Centre has offered.

His students continue to be inspired by Massive Company and Atamira Dance Company, as well as taking part in the artist residency programme Project Light Bulb.

“Exposure to different art forms develops their appreciation and growth in understanding about performance,” says Mr Riley.

“Young people can live quite insular lifestyles and have little comprehension of the opportunities existing in the arts.”

Attending a workshop with Māori and Pasifika tutors generates awareness of a real career pathway for Tangaroa College students.

“The workshops also develop an understanding of what professional standard work looks like, of the focus and commitment needed - in both rehearsal and performance.”

The Vodafone Events Centre Schools Programme has inspired youngsters of all ages for a decade and it continues to fully sponsor workshops Dancing with Mythology, Massive Making and Storylines Story Tour.

Ensuring workshops remain accessible to all children is a core principle for Counties Manukau Pacific Trust that supports the iconic event centre.

Trust chairman, Sir Noel Robinson, says the team is as passionate as ever about providing excellent educational experiences for schools.

“As an official Learning Experiences Outside the Classroom (LEOTC) Provider for the Ministry of Education, we work very hard to ensure the activities are aligned with the New Zealand curriculum.”

A new innovation for 2014 is A Day of Ballet, a new workshop led by the Royal New Zealand Ballet Education team, he says.

There will be three theatre performances in 2014, including Tom Crean: Antarctic Explorer, a humorous and dramatic one-man act featuring Adrian Dooley.

The award-winning show from the United Kingdom has played to 250,000 people worldwide and is part of the New Zealand Festival 2014.

The second is Mr McGee and the Biting Flea by Capital E!, a show based on the delightful children’s books of New Zealand author and illustrator Pamela Allen.

In July the Vodafone Events Centre will celebrate Matariki (the Maori New Year), repeating its successful 2013 weaving workshops, as well as welcoming Taki Rua Productions’ Te Reo Māori Season where schools will experience a full te reo Māori theatre performance.

Other major events next year give students hands on experience of science, maths, technology and social studies.

The highly popular Kiwibots Robotics Competition is back to give us all a glimpse of the future as students and their robots play against each other in a match of skill.

The Vodafone Events Centre will also host Young Enterprise Scheme activities where students create working businesses and ply their trade in the real world.

“Our team, along with our partners, tutors, educational organisations and sponsors, is looking forward to continuing the good work,” says Sir Noel.


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