The McDonald College is pleased to announce the appointment of Kathryn Dunn as their next Head of Musical Theatre.
Dunn is a deeply experienced performing arts practitioner who brings to Australia’s leading performing arts school a wealth of global experience as a performer, director, choreographer, creative, producer, educator, curator and advocate for art and artists.
At the age of 16, Dunn won the Royal Academy of Dance scholarship to study at the prestigious Royal Ballet School in London. Then, as a member of The Royal Ballet company, she performed many leading roles and worked with icons of the ballet world including Sir Kenneth MacMillan.
Upon returning to Australia, Dunn was invited to join Sydney Dance Company as a principal artist. She was also a founding member of Gideon Obarzanek’s Chunky Move, and she was honoured to join Stephen Page’s Bangarra Dance Theatre, touring Ochres around Australia.
Her choreography credits include Associate Choreographer/Co-Creator of the original Billy Elliot – The Musical for West End and Broadway, Associate Choreographer for the original Matilda for Broadway and National, and Associate Choreographer of the original production of Groundhog Day in London and subsequent Broadway productions.
Her performance experience extends to musicals on and off Broadway and West End, including Chicago and encompasses film, documentaries, television series and commercials. She has also held lead directorial and curatorial roles for festivals such as the Short and Sweet Dance Festival in Los Angeles.
Dunn was engaged by the University of Southern California as Professor of Dance in Musical Theatre and has taught numerous masterclasses around the US, Europe and Australia. Most recently, Dunn was the Assistant Director for Bangarra Dance Theatre on Wudjang: Not the Past and with Opera Australia on Madame Butterfly.
Dunn said, “The appeal of The McDonald College is the opportunity to develop talented students who are able to pursue their passion without compromising their academic education. This is a truly unique opportunity that I am thrilled to accept. I am a firm believer that the transferable skills that a performing arts scholar accumulates puts them in good stead for any career – be it on the boards or in boardrooms.”
Principal of The McDonald College Maxine Kohler said, “We are incredibly fortunate to have someone of Ms Dunn’s calibre join us. Her experience as a highly experienced performer and as an educator will inspire, challenge and nurture our musical theatre students as they prepare for the future, joining our many successful alumni. I would also like to take this opportunity to thank our outgoing incumbent, Mrs Dolores Dunbar, who has taught generations of McDonald students for 27 years.”