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A Centre for Excellence in Our Local Community

Image supplied by: Catapult.

Catapult Dance Choreographic Hub is gaining a growing reputation as one of the country’s leading contemporary dance and multi-arts organisations for established and emerging artists, young people and the local community. This month I caught up with Cadi McCarthy, Artistic Director and Founder of Catapult, to chat about the year ahead.


INTOUCH: Catapult is gaining national recognition for its work in the contemporary dance space. What are you most proud of from the past year?

Cadi: I am proud of what we as an organisation delivered across our 2022 program, which was incredibly diverse and included professional dance-theatre performances, professional choreographic residencies, dance on film exhibitions, professional children’s performances, major inter-generational works, the Hunter Youth Choreographic Awards, regional and national tours and more. It was a massive year.

What are you looking forward to in 2023?

2023 is another full year of programming, too much to list everything here, but I have to mention our new year-long emerging artist initiative Activate, supported by the Create NSW Service Needs Funding grant. It provides emerging choreographers and physical theatre practitioners linked to the Hunter with development programs, residencies, mentoring, business development programs, and networking opportunities.

Our Propel choreographic and multidisciplinary residency program, supported by the Australian Council for the Arts, includes Hysteria at The Lock-Up in May. We are also creating a series of films with singer/songwriter Ena Malibu and supporting the first stage development of Alexandra Ford’s new work. Our children’s programming continues with the creation of a professional new work, Fragile, for 8–12 years that complements the children’s performance At The Beach.

We will host the Hunter Youth Choreographic Awards again, and our youth initiative, The Flipside Project, will head to Canberra for the MEET-UP Festival. Our professional company will hit the road again with a regional tour of Awkward. It is going to be another busy year.

What programs are available for people to join/participate in?

Catapult Community Programs will continue with our weekly open classes for adults, young people and children. In addition, we provide classes in contemporary technique and Creative Kids programs, and there are classes for pre-professionals through to absolute beginners, all taught by professional dance artists.

Catapult’s youth initiative: The Flipside Project, is a nationally awarded contemporary choreographic dance program where young people work collaboratively with professional choreographers, composers and designers. The Flipside Project challenges pre-conceptions of what dance is and offers new possibilities of what it can be. The project is unique, providing contemporary dance experiences that are non-competitive, creative and reflect the choreographic processes of the professional arts industry. There are three ensembles: junior (8-12), senior (13-18) and emerging artists (18-26) who create original works that are presented to audiences locally and nationally.

We will also return to schools to teach workshops and intensive programs to primary and secondary students. To find out more or to apply for any of our programs, visit

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