1 December 2020 12:18

The Isobel Anderson FRAD Memorial Awards and Joan and Monica Halliday OAM FRAD Memorial Awards 2020 finally reached their conclusion… 

Thanks to a global pandemic, national lockdown and the resulting shuffling of exam schedules, students who participated in the 2020 Isobel Anderson FRAD Memorial Awards and Joan and Monica Halliday OAM FRAD Memorial Awards had a long wait between the semi-finals and finals this year.

After a series of preliminaries, the semi-finals for both Awards had just been completed in March as the national COVID-19 lockdown came into place and there was some question as to when, or if, the chosen candidates would be able to compete in the finals. Thankfully New South Wales was out of lockdown by mid-year but by then students and teachers were focusing on catching up on missed studio time, training and preparing for exams to take place before the end of the year.

Not wishing the candidates to miss out, RAD Australia managed to squeeze in the finals in November (8 months later!) as students are now beginning to wind down for the Christmas break. Thanks to a range of COVID Safety precautions and various restrictions, the finals were run somewhat differently and unfortunately without an audience. But thankfully dance magazine dancetrain was on hand to capture the action and will publish a feature in their forthcoming Jan/Feb edition of the magazine. Our sincere thanks to our generous host Felicity Knight and Rhapsody Studios who were able to accommodate the finals in their spacious studios.

With the two adjudicators James Taylor and Sharyn Constable, pianist Grant Kennedy and RAD staff in attendance to impress, the candidates all rose to the occasion admirably and with enthusiasm. The candidates showed remarkable professionalism and offered support and congratulations to one another on their performances, enjoying the opportunity to catch up with dancers from outside of their own studio.

Despite a difficult year for business, long term RAD and Awards sponsor Bloch were generous enough to provide prizes for the winners.

Overall winners included

Isobel Anderson Memorial Award 
Abbi Lewis from Sonja Dene Dance Studios (pictured Image 1. left)

Isobel Anderson Awards: Martin Rubinstein Award for a Male Dancer                                                           
Arjan Jayawardena from The Conlan College (pictured Image 1. right)

Joan & Monica Halliday Awards: Bloch Encouragement Award
Charlie Carberry from Mosman Dance Academy (pictured Image 2. second from the left)


Congratulations to all our winners, finalists, and those who competed in the earlier stages of the competitions. You can download a full list of the winners below:-

Isobel Anderson FRAD Memorial Awards Winners 2020

Joan & Monica Halliday OAM FRAD Memorial Awards Winners 2020

With sincere thanks to the generosity of