About Flipside

The Flipside Project:

Is a contemporary dance and collaborative choreographic program for young people (aged 7 – 18) and emerging artists (18 – 26) based in Newcastle, the Central Coast and Greater Hunter. 

The Flipside Project provides opportunities for young people and emerging artists to collaborate with some of Australia’s most esteemed professional contemporary and independent dance theatre choreographers; inspiring and mentoring them through a long term collaborative, creative process.  

The Flipside Project provides the opportunity to create and perform in full length contemporary dance works that simulate the professional dance industry, collaborating with professional composers, visual designers and production teams.

The Flipside Project, is not a private dance school, but a youth dance company that offers unique dance experiences for young people through performance and creative projects supported by Ausdance NSW, artsNSW, the NSW Department of Education and Communities, the City of Newcastle & the University of Newcastle

Flipside’s Intensives Programs are devised to simulate the working processes of a professional contemporary dance company, through daily morning contemporary technique class, creative task development, choreography and rehearsals, working together to create new full length contemporary work.

The Flipside Project strengthens the presence of contemporary youth dance in a non-traditional dance school setting, in Newcastle, the Central Coast and Greater Hunter, creating a non-competitive, inclusive hub for young and emerging dancers: extending their networks and profile both in the professional arts and broader community.

In 2016 The Flipside Project  will engage choreographers:  Joshua Thomson (Legs on the Wall, Shaun Parker) Marnie Palomares (Shaun Parker, Lucy Guerin Inc, Chunky Move), Kristina Chan (Legs on the Wall, Sydney Dance Company, Tanja Liedtke), Adam Blanch (Sydney Dance Company, Queensland Ballet, Australian Dance Theatre), Rhiannon Newton (Buzz Dance Theatre)

The Flipside Project offers:

Intensive choreographic programs:  Junior (8 – 12 years) , Senior (13 – 18 years) and Emerging artist (18 – 26 years ) Ensembles work collaboratively with professional choreographers on new contemporary pieces and the development of full length contemporary works in conjunction with emerging composers and visual designers. The Intensives are all devised to simulate the working processes of a professional contemporary dance company, through daily morning contemporary technique class, creative task development, choreography and rehearsals, working together to create new full length contemporary work.

Master Classes: Junior and Senior week-end based intensive programs with Australian professional choreographers, focused on technique, skill development and performance.

Emerging artist program: Bridges the gap between dance school and the tertiary sector providing young artists with strong contemporary foundations in technique, duo and partnering, improvisation and creative task building. The program prepares students for auditions into BA courses at WAAPA: West Australian Academy of Performing Arts, VCA: Victorian College of the Arts, QUT: Queensland University of Technology and beyond

In schools workshops: Flipside Dance Inc can come to your primary or secondary school to provide one off workshops or longer term dance programs and choreographic development.


Ruth Osborne has devoted her professional life to youth dance, challenging old ideas and developing new methods. She is nationally respected for her teaching and choreographic work. She has developed dance in primary and secondary schools, tertiary institutions, private dance studios, summer schools and regional outreach tours. She has mentored choreographers and dancers, including both young emerging artists and senior dance professionals. Her professional dance career extends over 40 years and includes performing, teaching, choreographing, directing, collaborating and mentoring. She has served on many arts related boards including Ausdance WA (President), The West Australian Ballet, WAAPA Advisory Panels, Arts WA Peer Assessment Panel, STEPS Youth Dance Company and Youth Arts Incorporated. After extensive training and experience across all dance sectors in Sydney, Ruth moved to WA and in 1976 established the Contemporary Dance Centre, where she was Artistic Director until 1999. She taught at WAAPA from its inception; and was a founding board member, choreographer and Artistic Director of STEPS Youth Dance Company for 10 years. She has choreographed for local, national and international television and film; and many large scale events including the Opening Ceremonies for the 6th and 8th World Swimming Championships; the Pacific School Games; collaborations for the Festival of Perth in 1995 and 1997; and Australia Day celebrations. Ruth joined The Australian Choreographic Centre in Canberra as Manager of Youth Dance Practice in 1999, under Director Mark Gordon. She established the highly successful Quantum Leap youth choreographic ensemble, and developed ongoing programs, focused on choreographic literacy, for young people auditioned from Canberra and the region. These bridged community and professional practice, with professionally produced performances in major theatres and institutions in Canberra, and regional and interstate tours. Ruth established the Licence to Move program to encourage boys into dance, and directed the highly acclaimed Industrial Hardware dance project series for young men and boys. In 2003 she won the Canberra Critics Circle Dance Award for her ongoing work with Quantum Leap and in particular “boys in dance”. In 2005 she was short-listed for the prestigious Australian Dance Awards ‘Lifetime Achievement Award’, and for Services to Dance in 2008, 2009, and 2010 . In 2008 served as an adviser to the Dance Board of the Australia Council. She won the Australian Dance Awards‘ 2011 Award for Services to Dance — “for her superlative teaching and wide-ranging services to dance for over four decades; for an outstanding contribution to dance education and to the development of youth dance practice in Australia.” She was the Artistic Director of the Australian Dance Awards in 2012 and 2013.