JETSET: La Petite Danse School principal, Mel Nobes, will travel to America next month to choreograph a performance. Pictured with student Chelsea Woodward.
JETSET: La Petite Danse School principal, Mel Nobes, will travel to America next month to choreograph a performance. Pictured with student Chelsea Woodward. The Third House Collective

Bowen dance teacher ready to choreograph USA performance

A BOWEN dance teacher will travel to America next year to choreograph a show to be performed in front of thousands.

The selection came as a big thrill for La Petite Danse School principal, Mel Nobes, who traveled with her squad of dancers to Newcastle earlier this year to take part in the National Junior Theatre Celebration (NJTC).

She will now travel to Disney Studios in Anaheim, where she will lead a team of 11 junior performers from around the country, including her own students Nathaniel Savy, 17, and Poppy Nobes, 12, who were nominated to the squad at the 2018 NJTC.

In California Ms Nobes will choreograph a piece for the small Australian ensemble to perform at a junior theatre festival - a national event comprising of more than 7000 performers.

"Honestly I was blown away when I was asked to do this, it's actually a little bit surreal," she said.

"It's an amazing opportunity for not just myself, but for Bowen as well. A lot of what we'll be doing and experiencing over there is workshops, I get to bring that back and let it assist my teaching in Bowen."

DANCE: Poppy Nobes, who played the lead in this years La Petite Danse School rendition of Mulan, will be travelling to America.
DANCE: Poppy Nobes, who played the lead in this years La Petite Danse School rendition of Mulan, will be travelling to America. The Third House Collective

The team will be performing a condensed version of Seussical The Musical, a show based off the works of Dr Seuss.

The show will need to be cut from around two and a half hours in length to only ten minutes, posing a unique situation.

Ms Nobes said the challenge as a choreographer was giving the characters a defined style and personality in the short amount of time.

"Because you don't have the full length piece you really need to exaggerate the movements and actions of the dancers," she said.

"It's more than just getting them to dance, they'll really need to act their characters.

"Being based on Dr Seuss, the characters are quite exaggerated already so I need to make sure they really draw that out in their performance. It's a difficult thing to choreograph, but it'll be so fun."

Ms Nobes said she was very excited to see the quality of teachers, dancers and staff in America.

"This event really focuses on the students' learning, it's not like they go across and they just watch a Broadway performance," she said.

"The whole experience is about giving them experience and fostering their talent."

The team will land in California on February 1, 2020.


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