The dance of a lifetime for a young performer

Published: 12 Feb 2020

Emmalese Dunn has been performing on stage since she was four years old.

Now 18 years of age, Emmalese was awarded the $1000 Jack Sturgeon Bursary at a special morning tea before today’s ordinary meeting of council.

She will use the funds to further her studies and ultimately pursue a career in musical theatre. She has a particular interest in the cruise ship entertainment industry.

Mayor Greg Williamson said Emmalese was extremely talented in her chosen field.

“Her achievements spread far and wide and start from a very young age,” Cr Williamson said.

“Her passion, drive and dedication towards musical theatre is admirable,” he said.

Emmalese will begin a three-year Bachelor of Theatre majoring in Musical Theatre at Central Queensland University (CQU) in Mackay this year.

Emmalese said the bursary would go towards commuting from Calen to Mackay to attend university and achieve the best possible results.

“I will devote as much time as possible to my studies, which requires quite a lot of contact time including dancing, singing, acting and piano class,” she said.

“Upon graduating university, I would like to move down to Sydney or Melbourne to pursue a career in performing arts.

“I would love the opportunity to work on a cruise ship, because the idea of traveling around the world whilst doing what I love is very exciting to me.”

Emmalese is extremely appreciative of everyone who has helped her get to where she is today.

“I’d like to give a big thank you to my parents for their ongoing emotional and financial support as well as driving me to and from lessons,” she said.

“And a big shout out to my teachers Daphne Grinberg, Miss Stella, Miss Kyra, Miss Toni, Sharon Thompson and Miss Harvison who have taught me singing, acting and dancing over the years.”

The Jack Sturgeon Bursary is a $1000 grant open to Year 12 students who have been accepted into tertiary studies in performing arts or music.

Fact box: Jack Sturgeon was a well-known Mackay identity and life-long supporter of local performing arts. The award recognises his service and enthusiasm for performing arts and seeks applicants who demonstrate that same enthusiasm.