AYDF – International Festival (7 – 12 July 2019)

Presented by Ausdance Victoria, in partnership with Youth Dance Australia, international and National Youth dance companies will participate in a five-day exchange, creativity, performance and training in Melbourne. The week will culminate with public performances across two nights, showcasing the skill, innovation and creativity of the youth dancers.

Artistic Director: Alice Lee Holland
Associate AD: Adam Wheeler


The Australian Youth Dance Festival (AYDF) is the nation’s first dance-specific festival for youth.

In 1996, Ausdance National identified a major gap in the networking of youth dance practitioners and young artists. Many young people were already expressing themselves through dance in unique and creative ways. However, in a country this size, there was virtually no contact with their peers with similar interests in other cities and towns. By initiating a youth dance festival, Ausdance also hoped to address some of the social issues faced by young people isolated by distance, population, regional and racial tensions. Creative art is a common support and channel of expression for young people; dance being one of the mediums. Through AYDF, we aim to provide young people a forum for healthy exchange and to begin their professional development.

AYDF aims to:

  • Empower and engage young people through creative arts/dance
  • Encourage participation and learning, and to provide young people skill-up opportunities to be the next generation of creators
  • Enable young people to network and form relationships with their future colleagues
  • Connect young people with their peers and provide them the opportunity to create with the same generation of people who  share similar interests
  • Allow young people to be mentored by a network of industry leaders in a supportive, non-competitive environment, to be the  next generation of leaders
  • Continue shining a light on the vibrant and diverse youth dance sector in Australia


Previous Australian Youth Dance Festivals

Ausdance National devised and produced the first four festivals held in Darwin, NT (1997), Townsville, QLD (1999), and Armidale, NSW (2001 and 2004).
In 2006, Ausdance Victoria hosted the festival in Horsham, VIC
In 2009, Ausdance WA presented the festival in Mandurah, WA. 
In 2012, Ausdance NSW hosted the festival in Gosford, NSW.
In 2014, Ausdance SA presented the festival in Renmark, SA.
In 2017, Ausdance Vic hosted the festival for the first time in a major city, Melbourne VIC.

Read about previous AYDFs here