Art & Entertainment | Book Reviews | Education | Entertainment Video | Health | Lifestyle | Sport | Sport Video | Search

 

Dancing ahead

Dancing ahead

As a youngster Pauline Hiroti danced a lot. From salsa to hiphop, the former Wanganui High pupil enjoyed school but loved dance more. This week her passion for dance took her onstage to receive a Bachelor of Dance Studies (Honours) degree from the University of Auckland.

The youngest of six from a fitness-mad family, while a teenager she joined the New Zealand Youth Salsa Team and danced her way through Asia, Australia and the USA. The travel opened her eyes to a world of possibilities, which initially saw her shift from Wanganui to Auckland to teach salsa to youth. While there she met dance students at the University of Auckland and was encouraged to audition.

Pauline of Ngati Apa, Nga Wairiki descent, focused her research on community dance and particularly how it might foster engagement and participation for youth. During her study Pauline got the chance to find out first-hand when she was awarded a Summer Scholarship from the University that allowed her to set up and run a three-week community dance initiative in her hometown of Wanganui. The students who took part came from very diverse backgrounds and levels of education. They all trained with her four days a week during their holidays, eventually choreographing and performing a dance that explored and addressed the issue of substance abuse.

“The relationships that were formed extended way beyond the classroom” says Pauline. “The students worked really hard and would arrive at my sister’s house, where I was staying, at 7am for 10am class. They would have breakfast and then come back at the end of the day. The house became like a big marae. I’m very whanau-focused so I loved it.”

The experience taught Pauline the positive impact dance can have on everyday lives. “The kids all developed an enormous zest for life through completing something well. They learned goal-setting and for some of them it was such a milestone,” she says.

Originally intending to start a doctorate, a trip back home over summer saw her defer her PhD for a year to take up the challenge of being a Leadership Coordinator for the YMCA, teaching leadership skills to children and youth. She also helps teach Maori performing arts at a local college and runs a youth dance group on the side. “While it’s great to travel and research around the world, my heart’s in Wanganui and I want to work in my own community first and serve my whanau” she says.

ENDS

The University of Auckland’s National Institute of Creative Arts and Industries comprises the Elam School of Fine Arts, School of Architecture and Planning, the Centre for Art Studies, the School of Music and the Dance Studies Programme.

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines

 
IHC Tribute: Colin Meads

"While Colin is best known for rugby, to us he is one of a small number of distinguished IHC New Zealand Life Members recognised for their significant support for people with intellectual disabilities," says IHC Chief Executive Ralph Jones. More>>

ALSO:

Howard Davis Review: Tilting at Turbines - The Trip to Spain

Steve Coogan and Rob Brydon have now both broken the Big Fifty barrier, which seems to have brought a whole new level of angst to their midlife adventures ... More>>

Review: A Rose By Any Other Name Would Smell As Sweet

The Royal New Zealand Ballet has accepted the challenge of this heart-touching tragedy and largely succeeded. More>>

ALSO:

NZ's First Male IAAF Gold: Tom Walsh's Historic Shot Put Victory

Although feeling very sore but with a great feeling Tom Walsh took his place as number one on the victory dais to receive his much deserved gold medal. More>>

ALSO:

Scoop Review Of Books: Q&A: Hard To Find Books

"Unfortunately we are in crisis and this friendly dinosaur faces extinction… Our only hope is to try and raise funds to buy the building and restore it to its glory, either fully funded or with a viable deposit." More>>

Kid Lit: Lost Mansfield Story Discovered At Wellington Library

Previously undiscovered letters and a story written by a young Katherine Mansfield were recently unearthed in Wellington City Library’s archives by a local author researching a book about the famous writer. More>>

 
 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • CULTURE
  • HEALTH
  • EDUCATION
 
 
  • Wellington
  • Christchurch
  • Auckland