Stephen Page nominated for Australian of the Year

State and Territory Finalists were recently announced for the National Australia Day Council's Australian of the Year Award 2007. Alongside three other nominees, Bangarra's Artistic Director Stephen Page has been short listed for the New South Wales category of the award.

Stephen Page is the first Indigenous dancer/choreographer to have achieved international recognition. He studied dance at the National Aboriginal and Islander Skills Development Association and after graduating in 1983 began a professional career as a dancer with the Sydney Dance Company.

In 1988 he toured overseas with the Aboriginal Islander Dance Theatre and, after joining as principal choreographer, in 1991 was appointed artistic director of the Bangarra Dance Theatre which he has built into one of Australia's leading dance companies - Indigenous or non-Indigenous. Under Stephen's direction, the company developed a particular style of performance drawing on both traditional and urban Aboriginal cultures.

Stephen choreographed the flag handover ceremony for the Atlanta Olympic Games and directed the Indigenous segments of the opening and closing ceremonies of the Sydney Olympic Games. His film and theatre credits include the contemporary operatic film Black River, numerous music video clips, and most recently directing his brother David in his highly acclaimed one-man show Page 8, which toured the UK .

Awarded annually, the Australian of the Year Award recognises individuals based on their achievements and contribution to the nation, as role models for all Australians.

Nominees for New South Wales, Australian of the Year Award 2007:

Dr Tim Flannery, Scientist, writer, thinker
Gabi Hollows, Visionary
Professor Kim Oates AM, Child abuse researcher
Stephen Page, Artistic Leader

The national award recipients will be announced in Canberra on Australia Day Eve 2007.

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