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The Australian Ballet and Telstra announce dynamic opportunity for aspiring choreographers

David Hallberg, artistic director of The Australian Ballet. Photo by Nicole Cleary.
David Hallberg, artistic director of The Australian Ballet. Photo by Nicole Cleary.

The Australian Ballet and Telstra have announced a new initiative dedicated to nurturing choreographic talent and artistic creativity in Australia. The Telstra Emerging Choreographer (TEC) award offers aspiring choreographers the chance to create new work and take part in The Australian Ballet’s 2022 Bodytorque program, and to receive a cash prize of AU$10,000, courtesy of The Australian Ballet’s Principal Partner Telstra. 

Telstra and The Australian Ballet are firmly aligned with supporting creators of the future and innovation. The TEC initiative aims to inspire the next generation of Australian choreographers by providing them with a platform and an opportunity to develop their choreographic talent and nurture their potential. 

Choreographers from all genres of dance are invited to apply until 13 July. Four aspiring choreographers will be selected as finalists. They will each be provided a budget of up to $2,500 to create a work of four to six minutes, which will be reviewed by The Australian Ballet’s Artistic Director David Hallberg and a panel of guest judges with the winner being announced in October. The winner will receive a cash prize of $10,000 and the chance to continue their development by working with The Australian Ballet’s artistic team and dancers to create a new work as part of the company’s 2022 Bodytorque program.

The Australian Ballet’s Bodytorque program has been a breeding ground for some of the country’s brightest choreographic talents, including dance legend Graeme Murphy and Resident Choreographer Alice Topp. 

The partnership between Telstra and The Australian Ballet is one of the longest-running arts partnerships in the country. Telstra has been the principal partner of The Australian Ballet for 37 years. Through the Telstra Ballet Dancer Awards, Telstra has helped to celebrate ballet talent for nearly two decades by shining a spotlight on the ballet’s rising stars. 

Hallberg says, “This initiative is a major milestone in my first year as artistic director. Working with our partner Telstra to create a platform that encourages Australian choreographic creativity is incredibly important and something I’ve personally championed throughout my career. Adding this element to the Bodytorque program will mean that we’re creating more accessibility to all dance creators, utilising the foundation and resources we have here at The Australian Ballet to create greater opportunity, helping to make a career in choreography more of a reality for the young Australian creators of today.”

Telstra Principal, Media, Sponsorship and Awards, Genelle Sharples, said, “At Telstra, we are extremely proud to build on our support of emerging talent and nurture young artists. The Telstra Emerging Choreographer is an exciting addition to our long-standing partnership with The Australian Ballet which is all about empowering possibilities so up and coming talent can thrive. We can’t wait to see the creative output of young artists from across Australia.”

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