Faculty

Amanda Bollinger, teacher at Amanda Bollinger Dance Academy - www.vaganova.com.au - Photo by Stephan Bollinger - www.stephanbollinger.com - All rights reserved.

Amanda Bollinger

Director / Classical Ballet

Amanda graduated from the Berlin State Ballet School in Germany, where she studied the Vaganova method of classical ballet. She went on to dance with the Metropol Theatre Berlin, was principal artist with the Space Dream Musical Theatre, the Ballett-Compagnie Deutschland and Disney’s multi-million Euro production of “The Hunchback of Notre Dame”. Amanda performed with the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra, and she was one of only four soloists chosen from around Germany to dance in the TV Gala “Sommernacht der Klassik” at the Semper Opera house DresdenRenowned Belgian choreographer Marc Bogaerts created “Bolero”, a neo-classical piece, especially for Amanda, which was performed for the Prince of Belgium in Gent.

Amanda is an accredited teacher and international examiner of the Australian Conservatoire of Ballet.

Layla Burgess, teacher at Amanda Bollinger Dance Academy - www.vaganova.com.au - Photo by Stephan Bollinger - www.stephanbollinger.com - All rights reserved.

Layla Burgess

Classical Ballet

Layla Burgess was born in Queensland and commenced her training at the age of 4. In her later years she joined our academy. Layla has won numerous competitions including the “most promising dancer” at the Murwillumbah repertoire and first place at the Brisbane senior repertoire. In 2016 Layla made it to the top 25 of the Youth American Grand Prix finals in New York City. There she won a contract with the American Ballet Theatre Studio company in New York City. After joining the studio company, Layla went on to perform with the main company whilst they toured California performing “Nutcracker” and worked with many professional dancers and choreographers. A few of her highlights were working with Liam Scarlett for a group piece in collaboration with the Royal Ballet School. She also worked with Marcelo Gomes where she was chosen as one of the few to be choreographed on for a new pas de deux. Layla has recently turned her focus into teaching and is loving broadening her horizons into the new generation of young ballerinas

David Semple

Classical Ballet

David completed his training at the Australian Ballet School before joining the Queensland Ballet Company. He danced classical solo and principal roles including Swan Lake, Copeilia, Nutcracker, Sleeping Beauty, Giselle and Othello. He also enjoyed performing in many other works from choreographers including Natalie Weir, Paul Boyd, William Forsythe, John Neumeier, Stephan Thoss and Davide Bombarda.

David began his teaching journey as a Pilates Instructor working in injury rehabilitation, later added ballet teaching where he combined his experience with Pilates to help young dancers gain a greater understanding of their bodies.

Laura Hidalgo

Classical Ballet

Born in Argentina, Laura moved to France at age 13 to complete her training at L’Institute Superieur d’Art Bordeaux, France, and won numerous international competitions. After completing her training Laura joined American Ballet Theatre in New York, where she stayed for four years. She relocated to Europe in 2006, working with Dutch National Ballet and the Staatstheatre Nurnberg before joining the Royal Ballet of Flanders as Principal dancer. She was principal guest artist with the Slovenian National Ballet.

In 2015, Queensland Ballet invited her to become guest Principal Artist and quickly became one of their permanent ballerinas.

Amy Donnelly, teacher at Amanda Bollinger Dance Academy - www.vaganova.com.au - Photo by Stephan Bollinger - www.stephanbollinger.com - All rights reserved.

Amy Donnelly

Contemporary & Classical Ballet

One of four original ABDA students, in 2011 Amy pursued fulltime training with Canada’s renowned Professional Program of the School of Contemporary Dancers, affiliated with the University of Winnipeg. She also studied ballet and contemporary pedagogy, improvisation, composition and lighting design, and had the pleasure of working with and performing works by Canada’s internationally renowned contemporary artists, including Rachel Browne, Brent Lott from Winnipeg’s Contemporary Dancers and Tedd Robinson.

Upon graduating in 2015 Amy interned with Mascall Dance in Vancouver and became a Canadian-certified Personal Trainer. Since returning home in late 2016, Amy has devoted her time to teaching the next generation of dancers and furthering her studies in Exercise Science to become a physiotherapist.

Taylor Murphy

Classical Ballet

Taylor began dancing at age 4 with ABDA. She competed in numerous local and international competitions, including the Alana Haines Australasian Awards, gaining a scholarship to The Australian Ballet School, Summer School. Taylor achieved Distinction in all her grades and also spent three seasons with BCYB. In 2017, she received the Australian Day Award, Cultural Award, for the her contribution to the Arts. Taylor continued her classical training at The Australian Conservatoire of Ballet (ACB) in Melbourne. Taylor has become an accredited teacher for the ACB and continues her tertiary studies in Sport and Exercise Science.

Riannon McLean, teacher at Amanda Bollinger Dance Academy - www.vaganova.com.au - Photo by Stephan Bollinger - www.stephanbollinger.com - All rights reserved.

Riannon McLean

Contemporary

Riannon graduated with a Diploma in Dance Performance from the New Zealand School of Dance in 2000 as “distinguished graduate”.  Riannon has had an extensive professional performance career spanning over thirteen years, touring extensively, both nationally and in Eastern Europe, Central Asia and North America. Riannon has worked for Merenia Grey Dance Company (NZ), Dance North, Australian Dance Theatre and most recently Expressions Dance Company. Her choreographic credits include works for Choreodrome, (UK) Dance North, Dance North’s Extensions Youth Company, Townsville. Cecchetti Conferences, contemporary solo QLD Cecchetti Medals, QUT guest choreographer, and Aboriginal Centre for Performing Arts. Riannon’s renowned teaching capabilities and mentorship qualities have seen her teach as a guest artist for LDTX Beijing (China), Cathy Sharp Dance Ensemble (Switzerland), Australian Ballet Gala (Melbourne), Victorian Academy of Ballet (Canada), Expressions Dance Company, QUT, WAPPA, 2Ballerinas, QDSE, RAW Dance Company, Brisbane Contemporary Dance Intensive, ACPA, Daniel Jaber and Lina Limosani of Limosaniprojekts. Riannon is also a qualified Xtend Barre instructor and Pilates Mat Instructor.

Jake McLarnon

Contemporary

Jake completed his training at Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts and joined Australian Dance Theatre. He performed with Australasian Dance Collective (ADC) before returning to Australian Dance Theatre to perform “Objekt”. Jake became an ADC company member and contributed to the development of many new work.

As a choreographer, Jake created a work for the Tenerife Festival, “Iso” for ADC’s Converge as well as works for the ADC Youth Ensemble.

Aside from teaching, Jake has taken up a position at HOTA Gallery exploring his connection to the arts across various mediums.

Ariane Murray, teacher at Amanda Bollinger Dance Academy - www.vaganova.com.au - Photo by Stephan Bollinger - www.stephanbollinger.com - All rights reserved.

Ariane Murray

Character Dance

Ariane Murray was born in Paris and commenced dancing at 5, later studying full time at the Victorian College of the Arts for 4 years where she completed her Bachelor of Arts (Dance).

She performed with Bellder Ballet Theatre for 3 years before changing to the commercial dance industry for 10 years.

Ariane has been teaching ballet and contemporary for over 25 years, however, as a registered teacher for the ICDS (International Character Dance Syllabus), she has spent the last 5 years focusing on her love of Character Dance, which is essential to todays dancers.

Kiarna LaRosa, teacher at Amanda Bollinger Dance Academy - www.vaganova.com.au - Photo by Stephan Bollinger - www.stephanbollinger.com - All rights reserved.

Kiarna LaRosa

Jazz

Kiarna started dancing at the age of two, studying all styles of dance including -Ballet, Contemporary, Jazz, Tap & Musical Theatre. Kiarna has studied RAD ballet, BDA tap, jazz and CSTD contemporary, gaining her teachers qualifications in Tap and Jazz at the age of 16. Kiarna has worked with many industry professionals: Jack Chambers, Andrew Fee, Matthew Browning and Carly O’Connor just to name a few.

Kiarna studied with RAW Dance Company, graduating in 2015 with her Diploma in Musical Theatre.

Kiarna is now part of the team at Raw teaching and performing for the company.

Mary Bertossa, teacher at Amanda Bollinger Dance Academy - www.vaganova.com.au - Photo by Stephan Bollinger - www.stephanbollinger.com - All rights reserved.

Mary Bertossa

Yoga

Mary found Yoga in 1991 and first taught in the late 90’s. With a resolve to continued learning the years have unveiled some incredible jewels of this ancient tradition. With a firm foundation in Iyengar Yoga and study of Ayurveda, certificates in Yoga Therapy, E-RYT 200 hours, E-RYT 500 hours, Mary is a fourth series Ashtanga practitioner with a daily practice of Pranayama and Zazen.

Classes may be therapeutic, where the student can gently touch the pain, be it physical or emotional and release it with awareness, or dynamic, physically strong with emphasis on connecting breath to movement, a moving meditation, well-being of our bodies.

TOP