New RAD Director Announces Special Awards

Rebecca Taylor Takes to the Stage at Royal Academy of Dance

Rebecca Taylor RAD National Director, Australia
Rebecca Taylor RAD National Director, Australia

Announces Prestigious Awards for 3 RAD Members

After being announced as the new National Director of the Royal Academy of Dance (RAD) Australia in March, Rebecca Taylor has officially stepped into the role, succeeding Bronwyn Watkins, the longest serving National Director (29 years) of the RAD in Australia, which is the largest RAD national office outside London.

Rebecca Taylor joins the RAD following 12 years in a variety of roles at the Sydney Opera House and before that as a professional dancer. As National Director of RAD Australia, she is responsible for the management and development of the RAD in Australia, ensuring the impact of its diverse work is felt across the national dance sector. Her leadership qualities and strategic background have made her a key recruitment for the Academy as it prepares to celebrate 100 years globally in 2020, with celebrations starting with a special conference in Melbourne in January.

Luke Rittner, Chief Executive, Royal Academy of Dance said, “Rebecca Taylor was an outstanding candidate for the post of National Director of the Royal Academy of Dance in Australia, and she takes on the leadership of the Academy at a key moment in our history as we approach our centenary in 2020. Rebecca has a passion for dance and brings with her a wealth of experience and expertise gained during a highly successful career, both as a professional dancer and in senior posts in arts administration. I know she will lead the Academy in Australia with distinction.”

“I am committed to working hard to ensure the programs, activities and services of the RAD continue to be delivered with excellence, and focus on providing the best possible experience for our students, teachers and members into the future. I am honoured to be joining such a strong and vibrant community of teachers, students, examiners, staff and supporters – a community dedicated to ensuring the continued growth of dance in quality, access and impact. I am also excited by the opportunities to further develop the RAD as a leading voice in the Australian dance sector and the benchmark for dance training and education, and to cement our goals as one of Australia’s pre-eminent dance organisations,” said Taylor.

One of Taylor’s first tasks as National Director is to announce three very special RAD Awards will be presented to Australian members for their outstanding contributions and service to the RAD and dance in Australia. Celebrated RAD Registered Teacher Prudence Bowen will be awarded a Fellowship of the Royal Academy of Dance (FRAD) posthumously at an event early next year. Queensland-based RAD Registered Teacher and respected member of the dance community Valerie Bayley will also be awarded a FRAD. Finally, RAD Registered Teacher and recently retired Regional Manager for Victoria and Tasmania, Jane Hollier will be awarded a President’s Award for her remarkable service to dance and the RAD in both regions.

“These awards are a mark of the respect and appreciation the RAD has for its longest serving and distinguished members. They demonstrate the enormous pride we have in the talent and dedication that is at the very heart of our membership, which benefits not only the Academy but our students and the wider dance community. It gives me great pleasure to announce these very well-deserved awards for Prudence, Valerie and Jane,” said Taylor.

Prudence Bowen, Valerie Bayley & Jane Hollier. Images courtesy