Tanja Liedtke Archive

The Tanja Liedtke digital Archive contains a broad selection of items that tell the story of Tanja Liedtke’s remarkable professional life. From the beginning of her career in the late 1990s, Liedtke showed the signs of the artist she was to become. Determined, thoughtful – an artist with endless imagination, who tackled the challenges she was faced with in order to make the most of every opportunity afforded to her. The reviews, articles and other documents in the digital Archive illustrate the considerable contribution that Tanja Liedtke made to dance not only in Australia, but in Europe and other international centres in Asia and the USA.

This digital Archive is drawn from the larger Tanja Liedtke collection which is held at the National Library of Australia (NLA). Most of the NLA’s Tanja Liedtke collection is made up of articles, flyers, programs and writings that Liedtke had saved over the course of her professional life as a dancer, choreographer and director. There are also many items referring to Liedtke’s passing as well as memorials to her life and her artistry.

The initial sorting of the material was facilitated by Tanja’s partner, Solon Ulbrich with assistance from Tahli Corin and Joshua Tyler, before transference to the Tanja Liedtke Foundation. The Foundation then made arrangements to have the material processed in catalog format for the NLA. The Sydney Dance Company and a number of Liedtke’s close colleagues provided additional material.

This digital version of the Tanja Liedtke Archive is presented and made available through the support of the Tanja Liedtke Foundation. The Foundation would like to thank Solon Ulbrich, Kristina Chan, Paul White, Lee Christofis, Janine Kyle, Sophie Hyde, Keith Gallash (RealTime Arts), Annie Grieg (Tasdance), Garry Stewart (ADT), Phil Callaghan (Ausdance SA), Karen van Ulzton (Dance Australia), Artshub, Steffi Bursch, Emilia Batchelor and Sean Batchelor for their support and assistance in preparing the Tanja Liedtke Archive.

Short Biography of Tanja Liedtke

German born Tanja Liedtke began her dance and theatre studies in Madrid, then continued her training at the ELmhurst Ballet School and Ballet Rambert School in London. In 1996 she moved to Australia, where she studied with renowned ballet classical ballet teacher, Tanya Pearson in Sydney. In 1998, Tanja successfully auditioned for Australian Dance Theatre (ADT) in Adelaide where she worked initially under the directorship of Bill Pengelly and from 1999, choreographer Garry Stewart. Tanja danced with ADT for four years, touring across Australia, Asia, UK and North America. In 2003 she joined Lloyd Newson’s DV8 Physical Theatre (UK) for the award winning Channel 4 film and European tour of The Cost of Living, and the 2005 creation and international tour of Just for Show. As Tanja’s career and profile as a dancer was growing and strengthening, she was also simultaneously developing her choreographic voice. Following several successful early works, Tanja was commissioned to create works in Australia, South America, Europe and Asia. During her career, Tanja received several awards, including Dance Australia’s Critic’s Choice for most promising choreography in 1999 and 2000; the Australian Dance Award for Outstanding Achievement in Choreography for her work Twelfth Floor and construct, in 2006 and 2010 respectively; the Helpmann Award for Best Choreography (for construct) in 2008. In May 2007 Tanja was appointed Artistic Director of the Sydney Dance Company, just shortly prior to accidental death in August of the same year.

Tanja’s legacy is maintained through the ongoing inspiration of her work and her life. The Tanja Liedtke Foundation was established in May 2008 and works to preserve Tanja’s artistic legacy and support new ventures in dance theatre creation through exchange and partnership.