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Dr Tania Kopytko

Tania Kopytko is the Executive director of DANZ - Dance Aotearoa, a role she took on in August 2004.

DANZ is the service organisation for the dance industry and supports the development of dance in many different ways - through training and advice including projects in education supporting dance in schools. DANZ is based in the new Wellington Arts Centre in Abel Smith Street.

Originally from Palmerston North, and of Belarusian and New Zealand descent, Tania started her dance training like many, by learning ballet from the age of 7. Since then, over the years she has learned and performed in many different styles, but has a particular interest in community dance and using dance as a tool for development.

Tania studied anthropology at Massey University and went on to complete a PhD in dance anthropology at the Queen's University of Belfast, Northern Ireland in 1991. Her subject of study was a comparison between ballet and breakdance - looking at who owns, controls, and teaches the styles and their cultural, social, and economic context.

Prior to joining DANZ Tania worked extensively, both overseas and in New Zealand, in arts and dance administration, taught dance at community and tertiary level, and worked freelance to develop community development projects using art as a tool for development.