McKechnie, Shirley (1926-)

Libraries Australia
http://nla.gov.au/anbd.aut-an49682885
NLA Persistent Identifier
http://nla.gov.au/nla.party-675055

Biographies

Shirley McKechnie was born Shirley Gorham in Melbourne, and received her early schooling at Albion State School, and Williamstown High School. Although educated for a career in science McKechnie's training in movement and dance began at the age of four and she also took lessons in ballet with Jennie Brenan from the age of ten.

After matriculating, McKechnie worked in the research laboratories of the Melbourne and Metropolitan Board of Works while taking dance and composition classes at the Studio of Creative Dance, Melbourne, with Daisy Pirnitzer and Hanny Kolm (Exiner), both teachers being exponents of the modern European dance tradition brought to Australia by Gertrud Bodenwieser in 1939. She also danced with the performance group attached to the Studio of Creative Dance. In 1945 McKechnie began teaching dance at a small school she established with the encouragement and support of the Ferntree Gully Arts Society. She continued to teach at this school until her marriage to Ken McKechnie in 1948. After the birth of her second child, she established a second school in Beaumaris, Melbourne, in 1955. This school became the foundation for her long career as a teacher, choreographer and dance director.

In 1963 McKechnie founded the Australian Contemporary Dance Theatre, whose dancers were drawn from the older students of her school. McKechnie was the company's director and main choreographer between 1963 and 1973. During this time she choreographed a number of works for the company including Sketches on Themes of Paul Klee (1964), Earth Song (1965), Vision of Bones (1966), Sea Interludes (1966), Hymn of Jesus (1967), Of Spiralling Why (1967), The Other Generation(1968), Landscape of Dream and Memory (1970), The Finding of the Moon (1972), and Canon for Four Dancers (1973). During this period she also wrote and choreographed a lecture and performance titled The Dancer, the Dance and the Audience.

After graduating from Monash University with an honours degree in English literature in 1974 McKechnie founded and directed the first degree course in dance studies at an Australian tertiary institution at Rusden College, now Deakin University, in 1975. In her role as dance educator and advocate for the dance she was also a co-founder of the Australian Association for Dance Education (AADE), now Ausdance, founding chair of the Tertiary Dance Council of Australia, founder of the Green Mill Dance Project, and a member of the research team for Conceiving Connections, a three year-study (2002-2004) building on the research project Unspoken Knowledges. Conceiving Connections aimed to ?increase our understanding of dance audiences by addressing problems that have been identified by the dance industry as critical to its viability among the contemporary performing arts in Australia'.

McKechnie is currently a professorial fellow at the Victorian College of the Arts. She has received numerous awards in recognition of her services to dance in Australia. They include an Order of Australia in 1987, a Kenneth Myer Medallion for the Performing Arts in 1993, the Ausdance 21 Award for outstanding and distinguished service, and two Australian Dance Awards, including that for lifetime achievement in 2001. In 1998 she was elected an honorary fellow of the Australian Academy of the Humanities.

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Resources for Shirley McKechnie

Resources by Shirley McKechnie (35)

  1. Papers of Shirley McKechnie
    McKechnie, Shirley, 1926-
    [ Unpublished : 1938-1996 ]
    At National Library
    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 18.754)

    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 18.754)

  2. Interview with Shirley McKechnie / interviewer, Mark Gordon
    McKechnie, Shirley, 1926-
    [ Sound : 1989 ]
    At 2 libraries
    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 16.542)

    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 16.542)

  3. Shirley McKechnie interviewed by Mark Gordon
    McKechnie, Shirley, 1926-
    [ Sound : 2008 ]
    At National Library
    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 14.745)

    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 14.745)

  4. Shirley McKechnie / research and interview by James Murdoch
    McKechnie, Shirley, 1926-
    [ Video : 1988 ]
    At 8 libraries
    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 6.919)

    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 6.919)

  5. Concepts and structures for a dance education : what is known? how is it known? / Shirley McKechnie
    McKechnie, Shirley, 1926-
    [ Book : 1982 ]
    At CDU Library
    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 5.998)

    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 5.998)

  6. Leigh Warren interviewed by Shirley McKechnie for the Australian choreographers oral history project
    Warren, Leigh
    [ Sound : 1990 ]
    At National Library
    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 5.187)

    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 5.187)

  7. Jacqui Carroll interviewed by Shirley McKechnie for the Australian choreographers oral history project
    Carroll, Jacqui
    [ Sound : 1990 ]
    At National Library
    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 5.157)

    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 5.157)

  8. Neil Adams interviewed by Shirley McKechnie in the Australian choreographers oral history project
    Adams, Neil M
    [ Sound : 1992 ]
    At National Library
    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 5.153)

    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 5.153)

  9. Thinking in four dimensions : creativity and cognition in contemporary dance / Robin Grove, Catherine Stevens and Shirley McKechnie
    Grove, Robin
    [ Book : 2004-2005 ]
    View online (conditions apply)
    At 14 libraries
    Thinking in four dimensions : creativity and cognition in contemporary dance / Robin Grove, Catherine Stevens and Shirley McKechnie
    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 4.872)

    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 4.872)

  10. Anne Woolliams interviewed by Shirley McKechnie in the Australian choreographers oral history project
    Woolliams, Anne, 1926-1999
    [ Sound : 1987 ]
    At National Library
    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 4.716)

    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 4.716)

More...

Resources about Shirley McKechnie (5)

  1. Papers of Shirley McKechnie
    McKechnie, Shirley, 1926-
    [ Unpublished : 1938-1996 ]
    At National Library
    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 17.831)

    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 17.831)

  2. Interview with Shirley McKechnie / interviewer, Mark Gordon
    McKechnie, Shirley, 1926-
    [ Sound : 1989 ]
    At 2 libraries
    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 16.164)

    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 16.164)

  3. [Biographical cuttings on Shirley McKechnie, dance educator, containing one or more cuttings from newspapers or journals]
    [ Published : 1900-1990 ]
    At National Library
    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 15.693)

    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 15.693)

  4. Shirley McKechnie interviewed by Mark Gordon
    McKechnie, Shirley, 1926-
    [ Sound : 2008 ]
    At National Library
    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 14.589)

    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 14.589)

  5. Portraits of Dame Margaret Scott and Shirley McKechnie / Lynkushka
    Lynkushka, Angela, 1947-
    [ Photograph : 1994 ]
    View online
    At National Library
    Portraits of Dame Margaret Scott and Shirley McKechnie / Lynkushka
    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 9.879)

    This resource is very relevant to your query (score: 9.879)

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  1. Green Mill Dance Project (1992 - 1998)
    Green Mill Dance Project (1992 - 1998)
    Created by NLAdance, 4 items.

    The Green Mill Dance Project, also know as the Melbourne Festival of Choreography and Dance, was founded in 1992 as an annual national dance forum. The project was named after the Green Mill dance ...

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  2. Armidale Summer Schools (1967 - 1976)
    Armidale Summer Schools (1967 - 1976)
    Created by NLAdance, 15 items.

    Four summer schools, momentous occasions in the development of dance in Australia, were organised by the University of New England and held on its Armidale (New South Wales) campus in 1967, 1969, 1...

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  3. Nuti (1990 - )
    Nuti (1990 - )
    Created by NLAdance, 12 items.

    Nuti, choreographed by Meryl Tankard, with visual projections by Regis Lansac and music by Colin Offord, premiered in Canberra at the National Gallery of Australia on 30 March 1990. Perfor...

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  1. Kinder, Jenny (1951-)
    ... Born in Melbourne, Jenny Kinder began her early dance training with Shirley ...
    This resource may be of limited relevance to your query (score: 0)

    This resource may be of limited relevance to your query (score: 0)

  2. Ellis, Simon (1968-)
    ... of teachers such as Don Asker, Fiona Reilly, Joseph Scoglio and Shirley McKechnie ...
    This resource may be of limited relevance to your query (score: 0)

    This resource may be of limited relevance to your query (score: 0)

  3. McMicken, David (1959-)
    ... where he studied under Shirley McKechnie, Jenny Kinder, Bob Thorneycroft and Kathryn ...
    This resource may be of limited relevance to your query (score: 0)

    This resource may be of limited relevance to your query (score: 0)

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  1. Dance in Australia : influences and present trends / issue editor, Meg Denton
    Denton, Margaret Abbie, 1937-
    [ Book : 2001 ]
    At Uni of Melb Library
    This resource may be of limited relevance to your query (score: 0.227)

    This resource may be of limited relevance to your query (score: 0.227)

  2. Images of women in peace and war : cross-cultural and historical perspectives / edited by Sharon Macdonald, Pat Holden, and Shirley Ardener
    MacDonald, Sharon
    [ Book : 1987-1988 ]
    At 32 libraries
    Images of women in peace and war : cross-cultural and historical perspectives / edited by Sharon Macdonald, Pat Holden, and Shirley Ardener
    This resource may be of limited relevance to your query (score: 0.106)

    This resource may be of limited relevance to your query (score: 0.106)

  3. Practice-led research, research-led practice in the creative arts / [edited by] Hazel Smith and Roger T. Dean
    Smith, Hazel, 1950-
    [ Book : 2009 ]
    View online (access conditions)
    At 43 libraries
    Practice-led research, research-led practice in the creative arts / [edited by] Hazel Smith and Roger T. Dean
    This resource may only be vaguely related to your query: matching terms may only have been found in the full text contents of the resource (score: 0.003)

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  4. Innovation in Australian arts, media, design : fresh challenges for the tertiary sector / edited by Rod Wissler ... [et al.]
    Wissler, Rod
    [ Book : 2004 ]
    At 53 libraries
    Innovation in Australian arts, media, design : fresh challenges for the tertiary sector / edited by Rod Wissler ... [et al.]
    This resource may only be vaguely related to your query: matching terms may only have been found in the full text contents of the resource (score: 0.003)

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  1. Shirley McKechnie
    [ Video : 1988 ]
    Languages: Undetermined
    At 2 libraries
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  2. Cole Porter's Can-can : original Broadway cast recording / [music and lyrics by Cole Porter ; book and direction by Abe Burrows]
    Porter, Cole, 1891-1964
    [ Sound : 1953-2004 ]
    At 6 libraries
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  3. Quantum leapers : a film / by Sue Healey
    Healey, Sue, 1962-
    [ Video : 2005 ]
    At 2 libraries
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  4. Lerner, Loewe, Lane, & friends
    Loewe, Frederick, 1901-1988
    [ Sound : 1998 ]
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  1. Papers from the Green Mill Dance Project
    Green Mill Dance Project
    [ Unpublished : 1991-1997 ]
    At National Library
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    Gentile, Modesta, d. 2008
    [ Unpublished : 1968-1990 ]
    At National Library
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  3. Papers of Christopher Sexton
    Sexton, Christopher, 1961-
    [ Unpublished : 1929-2008 ]
    At National Library
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  1. Portraits of Dame Margaret Scott an...
    Lynkushka, Ange...
    [ Photograph : 1994 ]
    Portraits of Dame Margaret Scott and Shirley McKechnie / Lynkushka
  2. Made to Move '98.(Riverside Eagle S...
    McKechnie, Shir...
    The Bulletin with Newsweek
    [ Article, Photograph : 1998 ]
  3. Salome.(Sydney Dance Company)(Playh...
    McKechnie, Shir...
    The Bulletin with Newsweek
    [ Article, Photograph : 1998 ]
  4. Steps in the right direction. (Aust...
    McKechnie, Shir...
    The Bulletin with Newsweek
    [ Photograph, Article : 1998 ]
  1. Website: Australia dancing
    www.australiadancing.org
    Matching pages:
    View 262 matching archived pages
    This resource is likely to be relevant to your query (score: 0.188)

    This resource is likely to be relevant to your query (score: 0.188)

  2. Website: National Library of Australia staff papers
    www.nla.gov.au
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    View 6 matching archived pages
    This resource may have relevance to your query (score: 0.011)

    This resource may have relevance to your query (score: 0.011)

  3. Website: Ausdance : Australia's professional dance advocacy organisation
    www.ausdance.org.au
    Matching pages:
    View 185 matching archived pages
    This resource may be of limited relevance to your query (score: 0.008)

    This resource may be of limited relevance to your query (score: 0.008)

  1. Family Notices
    The Sydney Morning Herald (NSW : 1842 - 1954) Monday 17 March 1947 p 16 Family Notices
    ... memories of our only child dear little Peg who pas«ed away March 17 1926 Loved and longed for always bv her ... March 17 1946. Inserted by her loving son-in-law and grand-     children Bill, Vera, Shirley ... 9502 words
    This resource is likely to be relevant to your query (score: 1.964)

    This resource is likely to be relevant to your query (score: 1.964)

  2. Family Notices
    The Advertiser (Adelaide, SA : 1931 - 1954) Tuesday 13 November 1951 p 18 Family Notices
    ... , Priscilla, the beloved wife of Malcolm McKech-nie, and loving mother of Alan, Arthur, Harry, Don, Norman and ... . who passed away Jovember 12. 1926. — Always renembered by his wife, daughter lilda. and family ... 7686 words
    This resource is likely to be relevant to your query (score: 1.528)

    This resource is likely to be relevant to your query (score: 1.528)

  3. Family Notices
    Chronicle (Adelaide, SA : 1895 - 1954) Saturday 21 April 1928 p 43 Family Notices
    ... , Walter, and Freddie, aged 42 years. God knows best. McKECHNIE.— On the 14th April, at Thirdavenue, ... Enfield, Jchn Mai .film, rteirly loved son of Mr. and Mrs. Donald McKechn'e aect! 8J years. McKECHNIE.— On ... 13611 words
    This resource is likely to be relevant to your query (score: 1.362)

    This resource is likely to be relevant to your query (score: 1.362)

  1. Australians making dances: the spatial imperative. -Dame Peggy Van Praagh Memorial Address-
    McKechnie, Shirley
    Australian Association for Dance Education. Conference
    [ Article : 1991 ]
    This resource may be of limited relevance to your query (score: 0.093)

    This resource may be of limited relevance to your query (score: 0.093)

  2. Dame Peggy van Praagh. -Founding artistic director of the Australian Ballet-
    McKechnie, Shirley
    Dance Australia
    [ Article : 1982 ]
    This resource may be of limited relevance to your query (score: 0.093)

    This resource may be of limited relevance to your query (score: 0.093)

  3. The choreographic dilemma: matters of art, status and value
    McKechnie, Shirley
    Brolga
    [ Article : 1996 ]
    This resource may be of limited relevance to your query (score: 0.09)

    This resource may be of limited relevance to your query (score: 0.09)

  4. Dance to entrance. -Dance in Australia at a turning point-
    McKechnie, Shirley
    Bulletin (Sydney)
    [ Article : 1996 ]
    This resource may be of limited relevance to your query (score: 0.09)

    This resource may be of limited relevance to your query (score: 0.09)