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Features/Dance

WA dancers grace the national stage

29 October 2020

The shortlisted nominees for the 2020 Australian Dance Awards have been announced and West Australian artists have made their presence known.

The shortlisted nominees for the 2020 Australian Dance Awards (ADAs) have been announced and it’s exciting news for Western Australia, with 14 WA artists and companies making the cut.

Last presented in 2018, the 2020 Australian Dance Awards, which will be presented online, will cover 2018 and 2019.

West Australian Ballet and its artists have been shortlisted for five awards, an impressive achievement on the national stage. These include Carina Roberts in Dracula, for Award for Outstanding Performance by a Female Dancer (2018), Alexa Tuzil in Giselle, for the Award for Outstanding Performance by a Female Dancer (2019), Matthew Lehmann in Dracula and Oscar Valdes in La Sylphide, for the Award for Outstanding Performance by a Male Dancer (2018), and the company for Milnjiya, Milky Way – River of Stars, for the Award for Outstanding Performance by a Company (2018).

Alexa Tuzil as Giselle and Juan Carlos Osma as Albrecht in ‘Giselle’. Photo: Sergey Pevnev

Just as impressive is the representation of independent WA choreographers. Two of the four shortlisted nominees for Outstanding Achievement in Independent Dance are West Australians – Laura Boynes for Wonder Woman and Scott Elstermann for Act 2, Scenes 1-4. In the 2018 category, Anything is Valid Dance Theatre has been shortlisted for Dust on the Shortbread. Last but not least, Brooke Leeder & Dancers has been shortlisted for Outstanding Achievement in Youth Dance (2019) for RADAR.

STRUT Dance has been shortlisted for two awards for Sunset, Outstanding Performance by a Company (2019) and Outstanding Achievement in Commercial Dance, Musicals or Physical Theatre (2019). Broome-based Marrugeku is also shortlisted for the former, for Le Dernier Appel.

WA contemporary dancer Andrew Searle has made the shortlist for the Award for Outstanding Performance by a Male Dancer (2019) for his performance in Co3 Contemporary Dance’s The Line, while WAAPA-trained Niharika Senapati (now Melbourne-based), has been shortlisted for the Award for Outstanding Performance by a Female Dancer (2019) for her performance in WA independent dance artist Rachel Arianne Ogle’s Precipice.

Congratulations to all shortlisted WA artists and companies!


You can catch the presentation of the 2018 and 2019 Australian Dance Awards online, Tuesday 8 December at 4.30pm AWST (7.30pm AEDT). Further details are yet to be released but will be available on the Australian Dance Awards website.

For the full list of shortlisted nominees, head to the Ausdance National website.

Pictured top is ‘Sunset’, for which STRUT Dance has received two nominations. Photo: Simon Pynt

Nina Levy is on the selection panel of the Australian Dance Awards.

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Author —
Nina Levy

Nina Levy has worked as an arts writer and critic since 2007. She co-founded Seesaw and has been co-editing the platform since it went live in August 2017. As a freelancer she has written extensively for The West Australian and Dance Australia magazine, co-editing the latter from 2016 to 2019. Nina loves the swings because they take her closer to the sky.

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