For the past eight years we have enjoyed regular visits from the Royal New Zealand Ballet Dance Specialists. Our dancers are privileged to learn repertoire from the current RNZB ballets and to have new pieces of choreography developed and taught to them. Guest tutors are welcomed throughout the year – adding depth to our dancers experiences. Dancers attend Royal New Zealand Ballet productions, visiting dance event, and professional classes as are available.
St Andrew’s College Old Collegian Joshua Guillemot-Rodgerson (OC 2013), is our Patron of the Ballet Academy. Joshua studied at The Juilliard School in New York, was a member of the Houston Ballet, and is now a Principal Soloist with the Royal New Zealand Ballet. Throughout his training, and now as a professional, Joshua has maintained close ties with the Ballet Academy, taking classes when visiting home and as a contributing choreographer in our productions. We are thrilled to have him share his knowledge and professionalism with our dancers.
We are proud of all our students, regardless of ballet becoming a professional pathway or a lifelong passion for the artform from dance experience through school. We congratulate those who have departed for full-time training or careers – Kate Holmes to the New Zealand School of Dance, Harrison Bradley to the Australian Ballet School and Tara Kingjil-Moran and Anika Boet to Brent Street Performing Arts (Sydney). Becoming our own 'role models of excellence', past students are encouraged to return and share their experiences also.
Dr Carolyn Cairns
B.Sc, DipEd(Hons), M.Ed(Hons), Ph.D
St Andrew’s College is fortunate to have Dr Carolyn Cairns heading our Ballet Academy. With an enviable background in ballet, medical science, and education, Carolyn combines excellence in ballet with a sound understanding of the school dynamic.
Dr Cairns trained in Classical Ballet (RAD, BBO), Modern Jazz (NZAMD), and Character National (ISTD). Two of her notable ballet masters were Lorraine Peters (QSM) and Russell Kerr (ONZM, past Artistic Director of the Royal New Zealand Ballet). She danced with Southern Ballet, its companies, and Dance Arts, winning numerous awards including a student guest scholarship to the New Zealand School of Dance.
Dr Cairns is also a qualified secondary school and special education teacher who has worked in both Australia and the USA. While living in Washington DC she was the Ballet Mistress for Gallaudet University. In San Diego she was the Head Mistress for a small private school. Returning to New Zealand, she achieved her Doctorate in Education specialising in understanding the expert practice of teaching ballet. This research included working closely with international ballet masters within the RNZB and the Australian Ballet, and its findings strongly informed her professional knowledge and style of teaching. In 2010 Dr Cairns established the Ballet Academy at St Andrew’s College, bringing this wealth of knowledge into daily practise.
Patron & Guest Tutor
College Jazz Tutor
"Ballet is an ephemeral art – it's hard to capture and impossible to hold. In being so, the method of teaching remains as it always has – a passing of knowledge from master to student. I hope to pass on all I can about this beautiful art form to my dancers – giving them every opportunity to strive for their personal best while we endeavour to provide our professional best.”
Dr Carolyn Cairns, Artistic Director and Tutor