Staff

DIANNE POKORNY – Principal, Classical Ballet

DIANNE POKORNY - PRINCIPAL & CLASSICAL BALLET

F.C.B.A. C.I.C.B. Examiner, Maestro Cecchetti Diploma Holder, Certificate IV & Master of Arts in Performance.

Dianne originally trained in Adelaide under Judy Watson and went on to further full-time study with Laurel Martyn at Ballet Victoria in Melbourne.  Dianne spent 3 years under the tutelage of Janina Curnovas and was invited to join Ballet Victoria on their tour of Petrushka with Valery and Galina Panov. At the completion of her study she was accepted into the Australian Ballet Company by Dame Peggy Van Praagh.    Dianne was a member of the Australian Ballet Company for a number of years and worked with many notable choreographers, travelling extensively throughout Europe, Asia and America.  During her time with the company she danced in all major classical ballet productions, especially notable was the staging of Suite En Blanc by Serge Lifar. Dianne left the Company to pursue a career in teaching dance.  She gained distinctions in all teaching examinations and holds the prestigious Cecchetti Diploma.  In 1989 Dianne was appointed to the position of examiner.  In 1998 she graduated from University with a Master of Arts Degree in Performance.  Dianne is a member of the Cecchetti Grade Panel which is responsible for writing and implementing the pre-primary to grade 6 syllabi. She is also on the Examiners Training Panel and is the NSW Representative to the National Council.

JANE MORAN – Principal, Classical Ballet

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F.C.B.A. C.I.C.B. and Maestro Cecchetti Diploma Holder. Cetificate IV.

Jane trained in South Australia where she studied the Cecchetti Method of classical ballet and passed all ballet examinations up to and including Advanced with Honours.
As a child Jane spent much of her time performing, her professional stage experience includes King and I, Sound of Music, South Pacific, Carousel and pantomimes Hansel and Gretel, Sleeping Beauty, Hans Christian Anderson and Pinocchio.
She went on to study full-time ballet in Melbourne at the National Theatre Ballet School under Gailene Stock and Gary Norman before moving to Sydney to continued full-time training at the New South Wales College of Dance with Kim Trainor and Kelvin Coe. Jane then joined the Contemporary Dance Company in Sydney, working and touring throughout NSW.
In 1995 Jane completed a three year diploma of photography in Sydney.
She then went onto complete all of her Cecchetti teaching examinations, she holds the prestigious Cecchetti Diploma and is a Fellow of the Cecchetti Society.
In 2013 Jane was made a trainee examiner for Cecchetti Australia. She is also an accredited trainer (holder of TAE40440 & CUA40313/CUA40211)

 

KIRSTY WALKER – Jazz

An accomplished entertainer and performer, Kristy has trained jazz, classical ballet, lyrical, contemporary, hip hop, tap, singing, drama, musical theatre, and modelling. As an avid dance student since the tender age of 3 years, Kristy later attended The McDonald College of Performing Arts where she learnt the foundations of dance, singing and acting. Kristy’s credentials range from touring with a live children’s entertainment show to winning numerous awards at eisteddfods, performing at the Sydney 2000 Olympics Opening Ceremony, starring on television in Crime Scene Investigation  Australia and numerous television commercials and appeared as the lead in Art Vs Science ‘Finally See our Way’ Film Clip.
Kristy is an energetic and enthusiastic young professional with a love and passion for the performing arts.

 

Katie Player – Jazz, Classical Ballet & Tap

Katie Player

Katie has been trained in jazz, tap and ballet from an early stage. Competing in many eisteddfods where she won the most promising entertainer award in 2005 as we’ll as performing in New Caledonia for the opening of the grand casino in the Elvis show.
In 2006 Katie was accepted into The Conlon Collage full time ballet program where she finished her Advance 2 RAD and Advanced LGTDA.
After completing one year of full time ballet Katie moved onto ED5internation’s full time performing arts course where she was trained under William Forsyth, Caroline Kasper, Leslie Bell and Kim Trainer, this course gave Katie her Certificate IV in performing arts.
On completion Katie gained her Certificate III in fitness and first aid.
In 2008 Di Heaton sent Katie onto her first cruise ship contract with Carnival Cruise lines where she performed for the next 5 years finishing as dance captain.

When returning home Katie was given a spot in the 4 girl dance show on board  the Sydney Show boats where she still performs now.

 

ELIZABETH  MCMAHON – Classical Ballet

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Maestro Cecchetti Diploma Holder

Elizabeth began her dance training at 8 years old under Cecchetti teacher, Lorraine Blackbourne OBE.  As a Cecchetti student she was awarded a Lucie Saranova Award which was presented to her by Madame Saranova herself.  Elizabeth was accepted into The Australian Ballet School at age 15, enjoying opportunities to work with Opera Australia and choreographers brought in by Dame Margaret Scott DBE to work with students.   She joined The Australian Ballet at 19 years of age, after having been offered contracts by Directors in all States of Australia.
After performing with The Australian Ballet for a number of years.  Elizabeth left to explore broader horizons.  She worked as a commercial dancer in London from 1983 to 1986 featuring in commercials, television series, films and fashion shows.  On her return to Australia Elizabeth completed a Social Work degree at the University of Sydney.
In 2012, she appeared as a Guest Artist with The Australian Ballet in Stephen Baynes’ Swan Lake.
In preparation for her transition to teaching ballet, Elizabeth obtained distinctions in all her major grade examinations.   She is also a holder of the Enrico Cecchetti Diploma.  She is now an experienced ballet teacher with a special interest in working with children who display signs of anxiety.   Elizabeth gained her Cecchetti Associate qualification and is now working on the Associate Diploma, with Certificate IV qualification, through Cecchetti Ballet Australia.   Elizabeth teaches at Tanya Pearsons Coaching Academy, Lane Cove Dance Academy and Roseville Dance Academy.
Elizabeth is a qualified Level One ballroom teacher.  She coaches children on posture, artistry and gives them ballet exercises designed to develop spinal strength and line, proprioception and foot articulation.  Elizabeth also works with adults and, on occasions, has participated in Pro-am ballroom dancing competitions.

 

EMMA MORAN – Contemporary, Jazz & Classical Ballet

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Maestro Cecchetti Diploma Holder

Emma began her training at Northern Districts School Of Ballet (now Roseville Dance Academy) under the direction of Dianne Pokorny and Jane Moran. She has completed all of her Cecchetti ballet examinations from Pre-Primary to Diploma achieving Honours for all exams, and winning the Intermediate and Advanced 1 scholarships. Emma won the Valrene Tweedie Perpetual Trophy for Choreography on four occasions; 03, 05, 09 & 2010 and in 2005 she won the William Carse Memorial Award for outstanding commitment and consistency to the Cecchetti Society of Australia. 
In 2008 she began full-time training at Alegria Dance Studios where she completed her RAD Advanced 2 and Spanish Dance Society examinations with Distinction. 
Emma represented New South Wales in the National Medal Competition in 2007 and 2010, winning the Lucie Saranova Memorial Gold Medal in 2010. She also won the inaugural NSW Valrene Tweedie Memorial Scholarship and was chosen to demonstrate on the Australian Advanced 2 DVD. In 2010 Emma was accepted into second year of Northern School of Contemporary Dance’s BPA course in the UK.
In 2011 she represented Australian at the Cecchetti International Classical Ballet Competition in the UK and in 2012 joined Phoenix Dance Theatre as an apprentice dancer.
In 2014 Emma was part of Sydney Dance Company’s inaugural Pre-Professional Year.