Manukau Courier : March 8th 2011
www.manukaucourier.co.nz Tuesday, March 8, 2011 Have we got NEWS for you! News that you can Read, Hear & Watch! Our amazing new online editions take the news into a new dimension. Reads like a newspaper with easy-to-read turning pages -- and packed with extra features that connect you to news like never before. News coverage that puts you on the scene with Turn the page to a new era in local news -- the total multi media news experience! Just click on "Latest Edition" at www.manukaucourier.co.nz Turn on to our online editions NOW. The latest local news online -- anywhere, anytime. MULTIMEDIA YOUR NEWS State of Grace Let's dance: Black Grace apprentice Thomas Fonua, from Mangere will take to the stage alongside a crew of teens in UrbanYOUTH Movement's performance of Who are You? Photo: FIONA GOODALL By MELISSA KINEALY Teenager leads young hopefuls on to stage TEENAGER Thomas Fonua finally has the chance to show his home town just what he's been doing with his dream dance apprenticeship. The 18-year-old from Mangere will appear on stage in Who Are You, an Urban- YOUTH Movement perform- ance, alongside a group of youngsters he's helping to mentor. The show is on at the Mangere Arts Centre next week as part of the Auckland Arts Festival. Thomas is a student with New Zealand's renowned Black Grace Dance Company after landing a two-year apprenticeship with his first performance with Urban- YOUTH in 2009. Black Grace started the progressive mentoring sche- mein1999inabidtoadda youth voice in its Pacific Con- temporary dance style. Now Thomas is leading other young hopefuls on to the stage. The dancers aged 16 to 21 are being taught life skills through performance and tools they can apply to life like work ethic and conse- quences. It's all about attitude and discipline, Thomas says of his dedication to dance and his willingness to mentor others. Attitude is more important than great technique for aspiring dancers, he says. And how far you're trying to push yourself,'' he says Thomas quickly found out how far he could push himself -- shortly after he joined the company it left on an over- seas tour to Switzerland, the United States and Canada and Germany. Among all the travelling and the dancing he somehow managed to squeeze in his studies for NCEA Level 2. He passed with merit. When I started with UrbanYOUTH Movement I was trying to find a way to get through stresses of home and school and get rid of it through dance. I was overwhelmed and privileged to get the appren- ticeship.'' He's hoping there will be a job offer from Black Grace when his apprenticeship ends later this year. But for now the focus is on the Auckland Festival -- there are great expectations for the performance, he says. He's putting in 12-hour days and says the energy is high in the studio with the young dancers rehearsing every day after school, includ- ing Saturdays. The show itself is about how their generation res- ponds to perceptions of young people and perceived atti- tudes such as laziness and lack of commitment. Black Grace UrbanYOUTH Movement is directed by Neil Ieremia and will be performed at the Mangere Arts Centre -- Nga Tohu o Uenuku at 7.30pm from March 16-19. Tickets are $30 for adults and $20 concession and are available at www.iticket. co.nz -- special group prices also apply. Go to www.manukaucourier.co.nz to see video footage of UrbanYOUTH Movement in action.
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