Staff Profiles

Full time teaching faculty staff

Sally GardnerSally Gardner
has a background as a dancer-choreographer in companies in London (Dancework), New York (Robert Kovich and Dancers, Sara and Jerry Pearson, and Judith Moss and dancers), Sydney (Russell Dumas's Dance Exchange) and Melbourne (Dance Works). Sally is involved in presenting, publishing and reviewing and she is co-editor of Writings on Dance journal. Her research interests lie in the areas of dancing experience, modern/post-modern and contemporary dance concepts, values and processes, philosophy of the body, and the historically and culturally specific modes of dance training. Awards include Australia Council Awards for individual dance development and production; Centre National du Livre, France translator's grant for her translation of 'Poetics of Contemporary Dance' by Laurence Louppe.

shaun mcleodShaun McLeod
comes from a background as a dance practitioner and as a dancer he danced with Australian Dance Theatre, Danceworks, One Extra and Company in Space, as well as dancing in various independent projects. He has also choreographed in Melbourne over many years creating or collaborating on works such as In Visible Ink (1995 Green Room award nomination), Cowboy Songs (1997), Fallow (for Danceworks in 1997) and Chamber (2002 winner of Green Room award for best video). Recent work has focused on improvisation and he has maintained a performance improvisation practice as a regular performer at events such as The Little Con, Conundrum and The Dance Card. He was invited to perform at the 2005 Seoul International Crossover Improvisation Festival in South Korea, was a participant/researcher in the improvisation event Precipice 2006 at the Australian Choreographic Centre, Canberra and performed in john cage’s musicircus for the 2008 Melbourne International Festival of the Arts. In April 2009 he presented The weight of the thing left its mark at Dancehouse. He is interested in the ways in which performance improvisation intersects with choreography and particularly enjoys the qualities of attention and the presence that manifest in improvisation. His publications include the monograph Chamber. Dance improvisation, masculine embodiment and subjectivity and a chapter in the book Practice as Research. Approaches to Creative Arts Enquiry (Eds - Barbara Bolt & Estelle Barret). He is committed to the idea that arts practice constitutes a form of knowledge and is a rich research methodology.

Sessional teaching staff

In addition to the above full-time members of the dance faculty, members of the broader professional dance community contribute to dance teaching at Deakin. The participation of these artists is vital in giving students access at first hand to current professional contemporary dance practice, its networks and orientations. The following artists contribute to the dance program on a recurring basis:


sophie cowanSophia Cowen
is an independent dance artist and dance teacher based in Melbourne. She holds a B.A in Dance Choreography from the School for New Dance Development (Amsterdam 2004) after initially obtaining dance qualifications from the Northern Rivers Conservatory for the Arts (N.S.W. 1996). Sophia has worked as a performer for N.O.R.P.A Dance Theatre (N.S.W.), Janis Claxton (N.S.W.), and Martin Butler (Amsterdam) as well as collaborating with artists from various disciplines for numerous performances and events. Her artistic process has most recently been supported by Victoria University through the solo residency program.  


anne-marie ellisAnn-Maree Ellis
Ann-Maree's dance and movement training stems principally from training in Contact Improvisation and related practices such as Body Mind Centering and Alexander Technique for the past 12 years. In 2005 she studied with Nancy Stark Smith and KJ Holmes in the USA. She is one half of the performance duo 'Gravitate' with Josef Lehrer and is a founding member of the monthly dance improvisation evening 'The Little Con'. She is currently undertaking the Solo Residency Program at VUT. She recently completed her Graduate Diploma in Experiential Creative Arts Therapy with Melbourne Institute of Experiential Creative Arts Therapy.


Olivia Millard           
Olivia has worked with dance companies ‘2 Dance Plus’ (now ‘Buzz Dance Theatre’) and Melbourne based ‘Danceworks’, performing works by Sandra Parker, Rebecca Hilton, Ros Warby and Trevor Patrick. She has received grants from ArtsWA for dance creationand has been commissioned to create works for Buzz Dance, STEPS Youth Dance Company, Link Dance Company, WAAPA and the Asia Young Choreographers’ Project. In 2003 Olivia received a Creative Development Fellowship from ArtsWA.Olivia has worked with independent choreographers, Sue Peacock, Paul O’Sullivan, Danielle Micich, Phillippa Clarke, Paul Gazzola, Paea Leach, Shaun McLeod and Rosalind Crisp. Olivia worked as a lecturer in contemporary dance at WAAPA from 1999-2006. She is a PhD candidate in the School of Communication and Creative Arts at Deakin.
In 2012 Olivia is teaching dance technique.


Trudy Radburn
Trudy Radburn is a choreographer, performer and teacher. She studied dance at Queensland University of Technology, The London Contemporary Dance School and has Masters in Choreography from the Victorian College of the Arts. She has performed extensively in Australia, Europe and Asia. In Europe she has worked with chorographers and companies including Sean Tuan John (Belgium), Jasmin Vardimon (UK), Imlata (UK) and Dance Theatre of Ireland. In Australia she has worked with Strange Fruit (2001-07), Hallitmeuller, Louise Taube, Tamara Saulwick and Phillip Gleeson.
Her choreographic work includes 'inner sole' (UK), 'Cupidity' for Strange Fruit which premiered at the Vancouver International Children's Festival (2004), 'Absolute Pearl' for Strange Fruit which toured to Europe (2006-07), 'the petal waltz' (2005-06) presented in The Joker season for the Melbourne International Comedy Festival and her solo work 'a tad absolute' (2002) presented as part of the little Asia Project (Melbourne, Tokyo Taipei, Seoul, Hong Kong). Trudy's most recent work 'poupee' (2006-09) premiered at Fortyfive Downstairs in February. Trudy is a panel member for Arts Victoria. She is teaching dance technique at Deakin in 2011.


Linda Sastradipradja
Linda Sastradipradja graduated with a Bachelor of Arts (Distinction) from the Victorian College of the Arts School of Dance, majoring in both dance performance and movement education. Linda performed with dance companies in Hong Kong (City Contemporary Dance Company), and in Australia (DanceWorks), and taught a kinetic studies movement program at the Victorian College of the Arts School of Drama, before moving to New York in 1990. From 1990 - 2002, Linda danced and toured internationally with several New York based choreographers and dance companies including Mikhail Baryshnikov's White Oak Dance Project (working directly with choreographers including Merce Cunningham, Mark Morris, Twyla Tharp and Meg Stuart), Sara Rudner, Dennis O'Connor Dance, Dana Reitz, and Molissa Fenley.
Since returning to Melbourne in 2002, Linda has continued working in association with some of Australia's foremost practising dance artists, educational institutes and companies. These include the Victorian College of the Arts School of Dance, Chunky Move, Opera Australia, NAISDA Dance College, Deakin University's School of Contemporary Arts, Lucy Guerin Inc, Bangarra Dance Theatre, Australian Dance Theatre and BalletLab. Linda teaches classical and contemporary dance techniques, repertoire, and kinetic studies programs and Master Classes to other Australian and visiting international dance companies. In collaboration with Rebecca Hilton, Linda is establishing regular studio practice sessions for dance artists to explore their developing and evolving artistic practices throughout the duration of their artistic careers.
Linda currently dances with Russell Dumas' Dance Exchange, performing an extended duet (for which she received an Australian Critics award for Most Outstanding Performer of 2009), most recently performing it at NYC's Baryshnikov Arts Centre in 2010. Linda has been invited to work collaboratively on a dance work with Sara Rudner during 2012-13, and will perform at the June Events Festival of the Atelier de Paris - Carolyn Carlson with Dance Exchange in June 2012.
Linda has performed and taught for theatre companies in the US, and has choreographed for theatre, film projects and music videos. PACE, the music video which she choreographed and performed in for Australian band The Restless, was nominated for a 2009 SHOCKWAVES NME award (UK). In 1997 she worked as a dancer, actor, and assistant movement teacher to Sara Rudner at the Alley Theatre in Houston, Texas, on their epic production of The Greeks. She was Assistant Choreographer and Rehearsal Director to John Carrafa for the music/dance/martial arts theatre production, Monkey - Journey Beyond the West, which premiered at Brooklyn Academy of Music's Next Wave Festival in November 1997 and has subsequently toured internationally. Linda has also created many images with renowned dance photographer Lois Greenfield, and is included in Greenfield's exhibitions, yearly calendars and her dance photography book Airborne.
Linda was BalletLab's Artistic Associate and Producer from 2003 to June 2007, and has contributed to a number of Australia Council resource projects as a consulting artist and writer. She has contributed articles for RealTime magazine's dance education issues in 2010 and 2011. Linda is currently a panel member for Arts Victoria's Arts Development and Presentation granting program.
Previous grants and awards from the Dance Board, Australia Council for the Arts include an international travel/study grant (1990), and selection as a dancer for the Australia and New Zealand Choreographers and Composers Course directed by Graeme Murphy and Nanette Hassall(1986). Linda was twice the recipient of the VCA's Christiansen Bond Award for artistic excellence and achievement.
Linda is teaching third year technique in Trimester 1 and second year technique in Trimester 2 2012.


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