Sixteen dedicated young performers are fundraising to attend one of the Southern Hemisphere's most sought-after performance programmes.

The children, all students of Michelle Glover Academy of Dance, plan to attend a week- long workshop at Sydney's Brent Street Studios in January 2021.

Aged between eight and 16 at the time of the trip, they all have a background in dance, theatre and vocal work.

It's the first time in 33 years as a dance teacher that Michelle Glover will lead such a trip.


"It's the right time. I've got this dedicated group of performers learning multiple genres. Many sing and over half of the group was in Hāwera Repertory Society's recent Annie production.

"They're a really talented bunch of kids and this will extend them in ways they'll never get here in Hāwera. I've always wanted to do this and it's the first time I've had the same like-minded children who could really benefit from it," she says.

Jamie Sayers, 16, is hoping this experience will help her get into a performing arts school. She's currently a student teacher at the studio.

"I want a degree in performing arts and then I'll try and do television. This is further experience."

Jamie has done three Hāwera Repertory shows and began dancing at five.

"It's so fulfilling - using your performance to make people think about something. It's going to be intense but fun and I know I'll grow from it."

Julia Scott, 11, views the trip as a pathway to a future in performance and Maggie Cleaver, 7, loves hearing audiences respond to her performances. Maggie's older brother Otis is one of three boys on the trip.

It's an expensive endeavour. It will cost over $35,000 to get all 16 to spend one week in Sydney and Michelle says there isn't much funding available for performing arts experiences.


"A lot of the funding we've tried to apply for isn't available to an overseas venture. If we don't raise the money, we don't go."

They're hoping to get as close to 100 per cent of the cost as possible.

■ The students are opening their studio rehearsal night up to the public on Saturday June 22 at the Hāwera Memorial Theatre, 6pm to 8pm, to help build their stage skills. Food and drinks will be available. A koha is appreciated and will go towards trip funding.