This year, Garry Trinder is celebrating 25 years of directing the New Zealand School of Dance. 

Garry’s impressive career began when he was 18, joining Scottish Ballet, as a dancer.  In moving into management, he served six years as Artistic Director of Hong Kong Ballet & two years as Director of Dance for the Natal Performing Arts Council (NAPAC) in South Africa.  He holds a Master’s degree from Trinity Laban Conservatoire & an Advanced Diploma in Education from Newcastle University.

Garry Trinder, Artistic Director, New Zealand School of Dance. Photo credit: Stephen A’Court. COPYRIGHT ©Stephen A’Court

Garry joined the New Zealand School of Dance on 15 January 1998, and since then, he has been a driving force in modernising the school and ensuring the highest quality of dance instruction. His direction has been instrumental in producing some of the world’s most accomplished dancers, with many NZSD alumni now appearing in top-tier dance companies all over the world.

Under his leadership, the School has extended its professional training reputation globally. Garry has forged relationships with acclaimed international ballet competitions and established exchange programmes with highly regarded conservatoires. In 2005, the School was endorsed by Youth America Grand Prix and, in 2006, became a Partner School of the prestigious Prix de Lausanne. These connections have helped further the reputation of the School as a world-class training institution. 

In recognition of his services to dance, Garry was made a Member of the New Zealand Order of Merit in 2013.

Garry has seen NZSD through significant milestones and successes, including the move from Cable Street to Te Whaea: National Dance & Drama Centre,  launching The New Zealand School Of Dance Foundation and creating both the School’s Associates and Scholars Programmes.

Furthermore, his leadership during the last two years has been critical as the School navigated some of the most difficult and challenging times throughout the pandemic. Despite the immense disruptions, Garry ensured that students were able to continue their learning in a safe, secure and effective manner. The School would like to express its heartfelt gratitude and appreciation to Garry Trinder for his tireless dedication to the ongoing success and excellence of dance training in New Zealand. His unwavering belief in his students’ abilities to excel has been an inspiration to all. His commitment to providing the best possible training and resources to his students has been an invaluable asset to the School, as well as his leadership and guidance throughout the pandemic. We thank him for his continued commitment and contribution to the School and the cultural landscape of New Zealand.