Venue 1 - Papa Tuatahi

Papa Tuatahi is our headlining venue that platforms new and archival dance film created by artists from Aotearoa and beyond. throughout our Ka Awatea season you will experience a wide range of filmic styles that question and probe societal structures, bring joy through satire, showcase student works and encourage us to look inwards at our own hauora.

Don’t Stop the Dance

Carolyn Sylvester

“The Bee Gees were right – you should be dancing!” 

“Dance is the Kale of exercise.”

“Dance like your Doctor is watching”

"I believe that everybody would like to live an independent and healthy life, for as long as possible. Physical activity is one of the lifestyle factors that can contribute to this, counteracting several risk factors and slowing down age-related decline. I think dancing is a powerful tool to set new challenges for body and mind, especially in older age." 1


The science says that dance is the best form of exercise for the body and the brain as you age.  But is that why older New Zealanders are dancing into their mature years? 

This short documentary film explores why people dance into maturity in New Zealand.  It looks at the benefits that people have gained, as well as discovering the diversity and scope of mature movement up and down the country.

With dancers between the ages of 40 and 85, in disciplines from contemporary, to tap, ballet and everything in between, this is a celebration of mature movement and the spirit of dance. 

Director/Camera/Edit – Carolyn Sylvester

Cast: Andrew Shepherd, Fleur De Thier, Michael Parmenter, Marlene Le Cren, Susan Jordan, Warwick Shillito, Tracy Scott, Kerry Anne Stanton, Patty Reed, Rachel McAlpine, Jan Bolwell, Kathleen Curwen-Walker , Debbie Stevens, Laurie Lemelson, Kate Rebecca and Sarah Jane from Molls Dolls, Megan Adams.

Dancers from: NZDC Feisty Feet, AAAB Senior Swans, RASA Dance, Rebound Dance Company, Zimmers Dance, Firefly Belly Dance, Crows Feet, Molls Dolls, Balfolk Auckland, TAPAC, Michael Parmenter, NZDC m&b class, Lucy Marinkovich, Douglas Wright and Kilda Northcott

Thanks to TAPAC, Seasoned Symposium - Celebrating Mature Movement, New Zealand Dance Company Feisty Feet, Wellesley Studios, RASA School of Dance, Dance for Life Studios, Rebound Dance Company, Molly Chapman and Molls Dolls, Crow's Feet Wellington, SeniorsDANCE, Zimmers, Douglas Wright EstateBalfolk Auckland, WOW, Tempo Festival, and all  the dancers all over the country who happily let me film them dancing with all their hearts.


1 Kathrin Rehfeld, Patrick Müller, Norman Aye, Marlen Schmicker, Milos Dordevic, Jörn Kaufmann, Anita Hökelmann, Notger G. Müller. Dancing or Fitness Sport? The Effects of Two Training Programs on Hippocampal Plasticity and Balance Abilities in Healthy Seniors. Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, 2017; 11 DOI: 10.3389/fnhum.2017.00305

21st October - 24th October
From 1pm on 21st October
5 mins
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"I've been dancing since I can remember, and discovered that really if I’m not dancing my life just feels rubbish.  I’ve been working as a TV director and Producer for 26 years, and finally get the chance to combine two of my greatest joys, Dance and Film.  I dance with Megan Adams at TAPAC, and am on the organising committee of our first ever national Mature Movement Dance event “Seasoned 2021– Maturity in Movement”, happening in Christchurch April 2021." - Carolyn Sylvester