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Dance enthusiasts sought for opening night spectacular


Le Grand Continental® in Boston, by Robert Torres.


Embargo: 14 September 2016

Love to dance?
New Zealand Festival seeks dance enthusiasts for opening night spectacular

The New Zealand Festival, in a new partnership with Kiwibank, is calling for hundreds of dancers to star in the Festival’s opening-night event, Le Grand Continental® by Sylvain Émard Danse on 26 February 2016. Auditions will be held in Wellington across 5-7 October.

Created by Montreal choreographer Sylvain Émard, Le Grand Continental® is a mass public dance spectacular that has delighted audiences across the world, wowing over 80,000 people from New York to South Korea. The free outdoor event embraces the comradery of line dancing and the dynamism of contemporary dance, and is for dancers of all levels of experience, ages, shapes and sizes. In its Wellington version, Le Grand Continental® will be a 30-minute show located in the heart of the city, at Civic Square.

The New Zealand Festival’s Artistic Director, Shelagh Magadza, encourages dance enthusiasts to get involved. “Anyone who loves to dance and who can commit to regular rehearsals in Wellington should consider being part of this special event – no experience necessary. It’s a once in a lifetime opportunity to dance in a joyous, uplifting show, led by internationally acclaimed choreographer Sylvain Émard,” Shelagh says.

Around 150 selected dancers will rehearse together in Wellington in the months leading up to the one-off performance in Civic Square on opening night. Rehearsals will be held twice weekly, led by Sylvain and his team – where dancers will learn everything they need to know for show night.

Kiwibank General Manager, Brand & Communications, Nicky Ashton, said Kiwibank is delighted to be associated with the event. “As a bank whose customers are so happy they’re prepared to dance for us on national television, we’re thrilled to be able to extend the joy of the indepen-dance through the New Zealand Festival and Le Grand Continental®.What a wonderful experience to be able to offer to our staff, customers and the Wellington public!” she said.

To register your interest to dance in Le Grand Continental® please sign up at www.festival.co.nz to find out more.
Registrations open 9am 14 September and close 26 September.


Partnered by Kiwibank

With support from
Wellington Amenities Fund
(home of the indepen-dance)

Comments from people who have participated in Le Grand Continental®

"Today was one of my favourite days in my whole life; what a gift this has been. Thank you Sylvain for making such a universal heart-felt dance, and for sharing it with so many in the world. Here's to next time! Le Grand Continental lives in us all." - Kimberly Ross

"A part of me wishes I could have been on the outside of the show to really appreciate how it looks from the outside of it. But I wouldn’t have given up my opportunity to be inside and dance in it, because it was so much fun. It’s a high, you know. Your adrenaline flying. Everyone gave their full power, their full commitment." - Lara Barclay

"This has been the most incredible experience I have lived. I have never experienced the camaraderie that I found here, whereby I am your left leg and you are my right leg, and if you can’t do the step, then neither can I, because we need each other." - Iliana Quinones

"It was an incredible two months of serious personal growth. Learning the steps activated parts of my brain that had never previously received a workout, but it was astonishing how quickly the process became easier." - Corinna da Fonseca-Wollheim

"Gosh, I loved this! Thank you for putting on such a fabulous event! Filled my heart with joy." - Sarah Hart


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