Tutors

Cindy Diver

PG Dip Grad (with distinction) Theatre Studies, University of Otago

DIRECTOR AND SENIOR TUTOR

Cindy is a Dunedin based professional actor, director, writer, and the owner-manager of Theatreworks Ltd. Over the past twenty five years she has been fortunate enough to work full time in the industry she loves, working as a production manager in television, casting director for film and TV, stage manager, playwright, producer, director, technician, and event manager, all of which has given her a well rounded skill set in all aspects of the performance industry. In 2011 she went back to study and completed a Post Graduate Diploma in Theatre Studies at Otago University with distinction. For ten years Cindy was the performer’s rep on the Fortune Theatre Trust, was a founding member of Kilimogo Productions and is currently on the board of Wow! Productions Trust. Cindy has been teaching and managing the classes for InterACT since in 1996 and is passionate about teaching and unearthing the creative side of her students. . 

 

Jodie Bate

SENIOR TUTOR

After graduating From Toi Whakaari, New Zealand Drama School in 2003, (which included two months study at La Mancha school of image and gesture in Santiago, Chile) Jodie has enjoyed working in Theatre, dance and television both in New Zealand and Europe. 2009 saw Jodie solidify her passion in physical/dance theatre through a period of working with ‘Point Zero’, a physical theatre company based in Oxford, UK with whom she travelled to France and Switzerland performing both solo and company devised works. Prior to her time in Europe Jodie presented TV2’s ‘The Go Show’, and lent her hand to script writing, puppetry and choreography for ‘The Go Show’, TVNZ6’s ‘Kidzone’ and ‘What Now?’ Other highlights include four professional plays at Dunedin’s Fortune Theatre and a five month season of Michealanne Forster’s ‘The Great Storm of 1868’ in Oamaru. Jodie has also appeared in numerous Dance theatre productions with Scrambled Legs and Jolt Dance /Theatre companies.

 

Shannon Colbert

BA (honours) Theatre, MFA Performance, Roosevelt University, Chicago Grad Dip Teaching (Primary), Otago UniversityA Theatre Studies, University of Otago

TUTOR 5-6yrs Class

Shannon has just completed the intensive Graduate Diploma in Teaching (Primary) at Otago University and has loved the opportunity to teach in the classroom. She has recently returned to New Zealand, with her partner and two boys, aged four and seven, after living in Chicago for the last twenty years. She received two scholarships from Roosevelt University, in Chicago, to complete Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in Theatre. In Chicago she performed with several Chicago Store front theatres, Summer Shakespeare festivals, and enjoyed filmed and live industrial work. She also fell in love with teaching, thanks to working with the preschoolers at the Day School in downtown Chicago.

 

Alice Keirle

SENIOR TUTOR

Alice has always had a passion for Drama and it was her early years of being involved in school productions, speech lessons and Shakespeare in the Park in Invercargill that inspired her to move to Dunedin to study Theatre Studies at the University of Otago.  During her time there she directed a number of plays for the Lunchtime Theatre programme and the Dunedin Fringe Festival.  Her involvement in the Dunedin theatre scene also ignited an interest in the technical aspects of theatre with a focus on lighting design and operation.  Over the years she has operated lights at the Fortune Theatre and worked on various music festivals and concerts through her job at Southern Lights and Services.  In 2010 Alice steered her career in a new direction and trained to be a primary school teacher.  On top of helping out with interACT, Alice is enjoying inspiring a group of Year 5 and 6 students at a primary school in Port Chalmers. On top of helping out with interACT, Alice is enjoying inspiring a students at a primary school in St Leonards this year.


Sara Tunoka

BA Theatre Studies, University of Otago

SENIOR TUTOR

Sara Tunoka has enjoyed a vibrant career in theatre in Dunedin from acting onstage in several productions to choreographing musicals and stage managing shows. Sara also trained at the University of Otago with a bachelor’s degree in theatre and has had a large involvement in developing and directing youth theatre, recently working with ASB in their financial literacy programme “getwise”. Sara comes to interact with an impressive resume of local and national work with also having a large career in corporate training throughout New Zealand.
She brings her passion for education, the arts and working with talented young people to interact once again this year as one of our guest tutors.



Tara Leckie

Assistant Tutor

Tara has been passionate about drama since a young age. She was taught at Interact and is now at in her first year at Otago University, studying Media Studies, Politics and Theatre Studies. She took drama in high school and joined her school's Theatre Sports club, where she enjoyed helping instruct and manage sessions, sparking an interest in teaching. In 2015 she took part in the National Shakespeare Schools Production, and also competed in the 48HOURS Film Competition, helping to concrete her interest in script writing and directing.

 

Mackenzie Diver Phelan

Assistant Tutor

Mackenzie was born into theatre world by her two actor parents, and was raised at the side of the drama classes in the art of Meisner and Stanislavski. She is currently in Otago University as a third year Anthropology student and taking drama papers to further her love for the arts. She feels that children benefit from having even a little of the arts in the world-  as it helps with their creativity and expanding world views, and important life skills such as empathy and reading body language.

 

 

Courtney Drummond

Assistant Tutor

Courtney's involvement in theatre is broad having come up through the interACT ranks as a student she is currently studying Theatre Studies at Otago University she is involved in a range of productions at Allen Hall for Lunch Time Theatre. Courtney has been stage crew as well as being on stage for local productions. Her other wide range of skills include stage management, sound, costuming, choreographing and directing. Courtney has been a member of 'The Playhouse Theatre' in Dunedin for the past five years.

 

 

Alfie Richardson

Assistant Tutor

Alfie has been involved in many areas of theatre. After jumping from Helen O’Grady drama academy and into Interact, he continued to grow his love for the theatre in school productions and other films and productions. Most notably, Alfie played the lead in his last school production and won best student director award at the Sheila Winn Shakespeare festival for his work in choreographing and adapting an extract from Hamlet. He also explored the backstage areas of theatre when stage managing multiple productions. He hopes to continue performing with the playhouse children’s theatre and one day direct his own full show.

 

 

Tia Hibbert

Assistant Tutor

Tia found her love for theatre, with all it's ups and downs, at a young age when she performed in her first Interact production and tripped over a fake rock on stage. Undeterred by this minor set back her passion for drama continued to grow. She attended Interact all through her schooling as well as taking part in school productions, the National Shakespeare competition and being cast as an extra in the film, The Light Between Oceans. She joined her school's theatre sports club and enjoyed the opportunity it gave her to help others gain confidence and to have fun. From 2014 onwards she has taken part in the national 48HOURS Film Competition which sparked her interest in scriptwriting and directing. She is now in her first year at Otago University where she is studying  Media Studies and Theatre Studies.