Students Showcase Heaven-sent Talent

Australia’s next generation of stage and screen stars will be shining at the Aboriginal Centre for the Performing Arts (ACPA) mid-year showcase from 21-23 June 2017, at the Judith Wright Centre of Contemporary Arts in Brisbane.

Over three nights, ACPA students will perform various works under the banner of Heaven & Earth, exploring what happens when the earth moves us to passion and makes promises of heavenly rewards – who will hold our hand and what will hold us back?

ACPA CEO, Dr Dimitri Kopanakis, said the showcase will allow students to experience performing for an audience in a professional venue.

“We provide an excellent vocational education that is industry-relevant, with a strong emphasis on public performances to build confidence,” Dr Kopanakis said.

“Our mid-year showcase is not only an opportunity for students’ families to watch their progress, but also for ACPA’s corporate and community supporters to see how they’re helping our students to shine.

“The showcase is open to the general public too, and we hope Brisbane theatre goers will come to all three shows and enjoy a unique performance experience,” he said.

ACPA is Australia’s only training centre offering courses that incorporate all performing arts genres, including classes dedicated to Indigenous cultural fusion. Each night a different genre will be featured.

Wednesday 21 June – Melodies from Heaven II
Australia’s most talented First Nations performers will sing a capella, solo and ensemble interpretations of African American gospel music.

Thursday 22 June – Lovers Anonymous
A hilarious and poignant portrayal of young lovers as they break up, make up, and give up on the “L” word.

Friday 23 June – The Clutch and Fur & Feathers
Loosely based on Hans Christian Anderson’s The Ugly Duckling, The Clutch explores the fragile struggle between independent identity and group power.
Fur and Feathers is a journey back through time, dancing with the energies of the land through the spirits of the Kangaroo and the Emu.

All performances commence at 7.30 pm. Tickets are available from QTIX – $15 for adults and $10 concession.

Event details
What: Heaven & Earth mid-year student showcase
When: Wed-Fri 21-23 June 2017, 7.30 pm
Where: Judith Wright Centre of Contemporary Arts, 420 Brunswick St, Fortitude Valley
Cost: Tickets: $15 adults; $10 concession.

Media enquiries
Rosemary Walker, Publicist

Email:; Mob. 0409 069 700

Image credits
Melodies from Heaven II, The Clutch and Fur & Feathers: Photographer – Dylan Evans
Lovers Anonymous: Photographer – Morgan Roberts

Spotlight on Stage Careers – Open Day 2017

Watching rehearsals, taking tours, and talking to teachers and students will open the public’s eyes to new opportunities at the Aboriginal Centre for the Performing Arts (ACPA) on Saturday 17 June.

ACPA’s first Open Day at the Judith Wright Centre of Contemporary Arts promises to reveal what goes on behind the scenes at Australia’s only training centre offering nationally accredited courses that incorporate all performing arts genres, including classes dedicated to Indigenous cultural fusion.

ACPA CEO, Dr Dimitri Kopanakis, said the Open Day would put the talents of Australia’s emerging performing artists under the spotlight as they rehearse for the mid-year student showcase.

“Open Day is a chance for prospective students to learn more about ACPA’s courses, while checking out the professional facilities that our students enjoy,” Dr Kopanakis said.

“It’s also an opportunity for our current students’ families to see how they’re progressing, and to watch them in action in rehearsal mode.

“And we’re looking forward to welcoming past students to our new home, as well as giving our many supporters a glimpse of what we are achieving.”

From 10 am to 1 pm, student-led tours will include displays and watching rehearsals in three separate performance spaces dedicated to acting, dancing and music. ACPA music students will also be performing in the foyer of the Judith Wright Centre.

Dr Kopanakis said the Open Day, supported by a Transurban community grant, would demonstrate how ACPA trains young musicians, actors, and dancers in contemporary performance techniques as the foundation for their future careers.

Event details

What: Aboriginal Centre for the Performing Arts Open Day
When: Saturday 17 June 2017 10 am – 1 pm
Where: Judith Wright Centre of Contemporary Arts, 420 Brunswick St, Fortitude Valley
Cost: Free

Media enquiries: Rosemary Walker Tel. 0409 069 700


ACPA staff and students shine on ABC’s 7:30 Report

December 12, 2016 – ABC TV’s 7:30 Report will present a feature highlighting the amazing success stories of ACPA’s recently graduated David Biondi Odo and Keia McGrady.


Troy Cassar-Daley performs with ACPA Graduates at Annual Graduation Ceremony

ACPA Congratulates is 2016 Graduating Class, who graduated from ACPA on December 8, 2016. The ceremony was held at the Judith Wright Centre of Contemporary Arts, which will be ACPAs new home from January 2017.

Over 40 ACPA Graduates received qualifications ranging from Certificate IV, Diploma, Advanced Diploma, along with Statements of Attainment.

As a special treat for both the graduates and their guests, the audience was graced with a moving speech and guest performance from Australia’s Country Music legend, Troy Cassar-Daley.

December 8, 2016



Be enraptured by a powerful blend of dance, music and acting performance as ACPA takes you on a thrilling journey in their Tenth Annual QPAC Gala.

Enjoy new and original works that highlight our exceptional, young, homegrown, indigenous talent and and also revel in recognised mainstream classics.

Each of our exciting dancers, actors, and musicians will draw upon their performance experiences and display vivid mastery of their chosen art form.

This promises to be a dynamic experience, a fascinating insight, and an event not to be missed.


November 18-19, 2016 – QPAC Concert Hall

Visit to book your seats!


Another ACPA dance student to study at prestigious International dance company

Aboriginal Centre for the Performing Arts (ACPA) dance student Keia McGrady recently flew to Sydney to audition for the Kibbutz Contemporary Dance Company (KCDC) and was jubilant when notified that she had been successful.

Kibbutz Contemporary Dance Company (KCDC) hosts a unique 5-month international study abroad dance program known as Dance Journey! The program’s faculty is composed of some of the best choreographers and dance teachers in Israel and worldwide.

Keia is our second student to gain an overseas scholarship this year! She joins David Bioni-Odo who recently won a scholarship to study dance at Banff Centre’s Indigenous Dance Residency Program in Canada.

Keia, who graduates from ACPA in December with an Advanced Diploma in Dance will leave Australia in February 2017 to take up this scholarship.

Not only will students study dance but they will also be given the opportunity to learn more about the Israeli culture. The Dance Journey program also offers Hebrew classes, tours around Israel, volunteering activities among local communities and more.

October 6, 2016

ACPA Alumni in the press: Actor Jeremy Ambrum

Actor Jeremy Ambrum picked up a new skill while filming Channel 7’s The Secret Daughter

Daily Telegraph – October 4, 2016

ACPA student wins international dance scholarship

The Aboriginal Centre for the Performing Arts (ACPA) is celebrating the success of one of its students who has been accepted into the Banff Centre’s Indigenous Dance residency program in Canada.

David Bioni-Odo has been chosen as one of only 12 Indigenous dancers from around the world, to participate in the month-long residency program, which focuses on refining and enriching the artistic process of the participants. David auditioned for a scholarship for the program via video, with a self-choreographed dance piece.

David, who is currently completing his Advanced Diploma in Performing Arts at ACPA, said, “I’m overwhelmed but really excited about the residency. This will be my first time going overseas. The teachers at ACPA always encourage us to try out for things like this, and this time it paid off”.

David will be spending a month in Canada working alongside other talented dancers and acclaimed choreographers from around the globe. The four-week intensive program focuses on technique, improvisation, and cultural process and knowledge in performance. The program will culminate with the development of a short, choreographic work to be performed in-house, and on stage in Banff.

The Banff Centre is Canada’s arts and cultural organisation, providing multidisciplinary programming, and advancing the practice of artists and leaders.

September 3, 2016

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