Education Policy | Post Primary | Preschool | Primary | Tertiary | Search


New Scholarship to Research Dance & Dementia

New Scholarship to Research Dance And Dementia

A high-profile expatriate New Zealander has established a prestigious new postgraduate scholarship through the University of Auckland Campaign For All Our Futures to investigate the positive effect of dance for people with dementia.

The Lady Rosemary Buchanan Dance Scholarship, named for its founder, is intended to encourage and support a doctoral student in the Dance Studies Programme at the University’s Faculty of Creative Arts and Industries to undertake research examining issues concerning dance, community and wellbeing of the elderly.

The Scholarship, which will assist with study for up to three years, is worth $25,000 a year plus fees.

Raised in Papatoetoe, Lady Rosemary Buchanan (nee Johnston) acknowledges she has always been passionate about dance, and was intrigued to hear of recent research that demonstrated the benefits of the discipline on aging.

“I wanted to give to the arts, particularly my art, which is dance,” she says. “I’m excited by the ways different disciplines can be combined to improve lives.”

Lady Buchanan started ballet lessons aged four, later going on to join the Royal New Zealand Ballet Company as a dancer, before marrying John Buchanan – who later became Sir John Buchanan, for services to industry.

The late Sir John Buchanan, who was also from Papatoetoe, and Lady Buchanan headed off to Europe in 1967. Back in Auckland recently for a short break, Lady Buchanan loves being home but says ‘there were too many opportunities overseas and she ended up staying for 50 years!’.

With a life-long love of dance, including contemporary, Lady Buchanan took lessons with the influential postmodern choreographer Lindsay Kemp for a time, as well as teaching ballet in schools for many years.

“Dance has always been very much part of our lives. My daughter-in-law teaches contemporary dance in the United States and my granddaughter is very keen on ballet,” says Lady Buchanan.

“Medical science appreciates dance. They have a genuine interest in how to solve things in a different way. This link between the disciplines is important and I’m delighted I can encourage it in some way,” she says.


The University of Auckland’s Faculty of Creative Arts and Industries comprises Elam School of Fine Arts, School of Architecture and Planning, the School of Music and the Dance Studies Programme.

About the University of Auckland Campaign For All Our Futures
Through the University of Auckland Campaign For all our Futures, the University aims to address, with philanthropic help, some of the key issues facing New Zealand and the world. Publicly launched in September 2016, the campaign has so far raised $220 million for multiple projects, including in the areas of cancer research, innovation and entrepreneurship, online STEM subject education, and scholarships for students.

Information about the campaign is available at

© Scoop Media

Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines


Scoop Review Of Books: The Rift by Rachael Craw

Rachael Craw's first series, Spark has been extremely well received by the YA community in both Australia and New Zealand (it has a hashtag, #SparkArmy), and The Rift looks like it’s going to be just as popular. More>>

Porn And Teens Report: 'Wake-Up Call' On Sexuality Education

Family Planning: The Office of Film and Literature Classification’s survey of more than 2000 young people about pornography highlights that sexuality education provides an opportunity for a vital counter-narrative to porn that could reach most young New Zealanders... More>>


Howard Davis: A Brief History of Handel's Messiah

Messiah has become an overworked Christmas tradition as hoary as chestnuts roasting on an open fire, gorging on mince pies and eggnog, and trying to avoid shopping mall Santas like so many spectral inhabitants of Dante's Seventh Circle of Hell. More>>

NZ Film Pioneer Geoff Murphy Dies Age 80

One of the pioneers of the modern New Zealand film industry, he's perhaps best remembered for the highly successful Utu and the road movie with a special place in New Zealanders' affections, Goodbye Pork Pie. More>>




  • Wellington
  • Christchurch
  • Auckland