Anja Ali-Haapala

As an audience researcher, Anja specialises in behind-the-scenes enrichment programs in the dance industry. She is currently completing her PhD in Performance Studies (Queensland University of Technology) which explores how open rehearsals affect spectator-dancer relationships in the context of mainstream ballet and contemporary dance companies. Through her research, Anja has worked with The Australian Ballet, Sydney Dance Company, and Expressions Dance Company. She has presented her research findings at Australian and international dance and performance studies conferences.

As a performer and maker, Anja has had the pleasure of developing and performing a character over a period of 8 years, with director and co-performer Kari, in an environmental-focused street theatre act entitled Frog-On. This act’s performance credits include Woodford Folk Festival, a residency at the Eumundi Markets and numerous Brisbane City Council public events. Anja has worked with many artists, including Tiina Alinen, Keith Hawley, Avril Huddy, Vanessa Mafe, Grant McLay, Courtney Scheu, and Jordin Steele.

As a dance educator, Anja has coordinated and lectured into dance subjects at Queensland University of Technology, including dance history, analysis, world dance, commercial dance, music theatre skills, and dance audience studies. She also enjoys working in school and community contexts.