18 Jul 2013

Pioneering Days

In 1953, Poul Gnatt and his troupe of dancers travelled the length of New Zealand, bringing ballet to even the smallest of rural towns. They made the best of what they had: old wooden stages, halls with bird's nests, honky-tonk pianos in lieu of full orchestras, and a touring truck which doubled as a dressing room. Clarissa Dunn and Hannah Darroch trawl the sound archives for some insight into the early years of the company - uncovering a treasure trove of characters and fond memories of those pioneering days.