Shirley McKechnie

Australia, 1988

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Episode of Series “Dance: Videos of Australian dancers and choreographers”.
Shirley McKechnie trained in the Bodenweiser technique with Hanny Kolm and Daisy Pirnitzer. McKechnie speaks about her formative years and her desire to develop a philosophy of art and, through that, a philosophy of life. McKechnie started the “Contemporary Dance Theatre of Melbourne” with a group of her students and together they explored a range of techniques in order to develop a style relevant to the Australian experience. McKechnie played a pivotal role in establishing dance training at a tertiary level in Australia and was a co-founder of the “Australian Association of Dance Education”. McKechnie recalls her relationship with Dame Peggy van Praagh and their shared desire to develop the intellectual ability of dance artists. Through her involvement with education departments, arts organisations and performing companies, McKechnie has had a profound influence on the direction of dance training in Australia. Researched and interviewed by James Murdoch.


production company

Australia Council


Peter Campbell



Production places
Production dates

Appears in

Dance: Videos of Australian dancers and choreographers

Group of items

Dance: Videos of Australian dancers and choreographers


Collection metadata

ACMI Identifier




Subject categories

Archival, Cinemagazines & Newsreels

Archival, Cinemagazines & Newsreels → Archival materials

Archival, Cinemagazines & Newsreels → Interviews


Documentary → Documentary films - Australia

Music & Performing Arts → Choreography

Music & Performing Arts → Dancers

Music & Performing Arts → Dancers - Australia - Interviews

Music & Performing Arts → Modern dance

People → McKechnic, Shirley

Short films

Short films → Short films - Australia






VHS; Access Print (Section 1)

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