Young Woman Ballet Dancer Performing


Anneliese gilberd academy


Anneliese Gilberd


Classical Tutor

Abigail Boyle


AGA Graduate Henry Seldon - Hong Kong Ballet Company

Our Story..

The Anneliese Gilberd Academy (AGA) was created in 2011 with the specific goal of preparing dedicated students for a full-time career in classical ballet and contemporary dance. From training at the New Zealand School of Dance and the Royal Ballet School in London (as one of the first AGC Young Achiever recipients) Anneliese forged a career as a professional ballerina in the Royal New Zealand Ballet. Dancing professionally for 12 years, where she toured the world and performed many soloist roles.

Anneliese has used her experience to develop a classical ballet and contemporary programme that reflects what students will experience when entering a full time school, training and preparing them for the demands of a high level tertiary programme and then professional company. Class numbers are restricted to deliver focused and tailored training in an immersion environment.

AGA has enjoyed immense success with graduates now working professionally across the world with companies including the Royal New Zealand Ballet, West Australian Ballet, Victorian State Ballet and Hong Kong Ballet. Students have also successfully transitioned on to high-level professional institutions including The New Zealand School of Dance, Alvin Ailey Dance School - New York, Tanya Pearson Classical Coaching Academy, Australian Conservatoire of Ballet, Queensland Ballet School, Sydney Dance Pre Professional and Transit Dance among others.

AGA prides itself in providing a caring and holistic approach to all students training. The personal attention and design of the programmes is what sets our academy apart. We are immensely proud of our continued 100% graduate student success rate .

Young Woman Ballet Dancer Performing

Mission Statement

Our mission is to provide specialised classical ballet and contemporary coaching within a secure and supportive environment for serious and gifted dancers. The sole purpose of our coaching programme is to encourage and inspire you to become the dancer that you are capable of being and the performer you aspire to become within a classically orientated studio.

Our coaching will prepare you physically for the daily demands that will be placed on you within a full time professional school environment, mentally to push yourself and achieve your goals and emotionally to stay strong within yourself. You will be coached and trained so that you are fully prepared, confident and supported when taking one of the most important steps towards becoming a professional dancer - auditioning for full time professional schools

Training Programmes

& Classes


Aspirational Full Time Programme

Our NEW AGA BESPOKE Full Time Programme is for gifted classical ballet dancers looking for a full time training option that has been tailor-made specifically for them. Bespoke has been created by our highly respected AGA Director Miss Anneliese Gilberd. Bespoke offers a daily full time training programme of structured classes that evolve with your ongoing needs, while fully preparing you for your next pre professional ballet school and furthermore, a professional career in dance.

What makes Bespoke incredibly special, is that it is not until our students have been personally selected and accepted into our BESPOKE programme, that Miss Anneliese will then, alongside our amazing industry professional Bespoke core faculty, create the timetable. The timetable will consider the individual needs of each student in order to support each of their personal dance development goals and requirements. The aim of the Bespoke programme is to nurture and support each of our gifted dancers emotionally and physically, while we assist them in moving to the next level of higher dance training.

Our highly experienced faculty will support our students continued dance development, by helping them to attain their own short term goals as well as supporting their long term objective of being accepted into a highly respected, professional ballet school.

Each of our Bespoke students will be trained to the highest level in Classical Ballet, by industry professionals on a daily basis, as well as being supported and encouraged to be healthy, strong and educated dancers.

The Bespoke programmes core focus is on our students balancing their high level of dance training alongside their physical health, well-being and happiness.

AGA Graduate Izzy Hoult - New Zealand School of Dance

AGA Graduate Orla Riches - New Zealand School of Dance


3 Tier Development Programme

Our Atelier 3 Tier Devopment programme is AGA’s holistic based immersive coaching programme that was created in 2021 to offer aspiring dance students a 3 tier training programme that can grow with them and support their ongoing academic schooling.

Level 1 works harmoniously alongside your academic schooling timetable and offers 3 after school sessions per week training In all dance genres . This programme supports our talented dancers to fully immerse themselves in becoming fully rounded artists while we support, guide and encourage their ability alongside nurturing their full potential .

Level 2 & 3 offers our dancers the opportunity to join our Bespoke Classical Ballet Full Time Programme on a Friday and/ or Saturday alongside their 3 Atelier after school sessions. Atelier has been created by our highly respected AGA Director Miss Anneliese Gilberd and offers a daily training programme of structured classes that will fully prepare you for professional ballet schools and in time a professional career. What makes Atelier special is that it supports our students choice to continue their academic daily schooling whilst still receiving a high level dance education.

All of our Ateliers will be trained to the highest level in Classical , Contemporary , Neo & National Character. Our Ateliers will be trained by industry professionals on a daily basis, as well as being nurtured, supported and encouraged to be healthy, strong and educated dancers.

Our programmes core focus is on our students balancing their high level dance training alongside their academic studies,

whilst also supporting their physical and mental health and happiness.

Flexible Ballet Dancers stretching their Leg

Royal Academy of Dance Examination Syllabus

As a quality dance school we are very proud to be affiliated with, and teach the syllabus of, the most respected and well-known ballet education organisation anywhere.

The Royal Academy of Dance or the RAD is one of the most important dance education organisations in the world. They have a series of exams that are seen as setting standards for classic ballet around the world and are one of the most important organisations for anyone interested in dance.

More About the Royal Academy

The RAD was founded in 1920 with the aim of setting standards for teaching dance around the UK. Today, the institute has a presence in 85 countries around the world including 36 offices and boasts some 14,000 worldwide members. Over 1,000 students are enrolled in the teacher training programmes offered by the academy and there are some 250,000 students following the syllabi for the exams. The current patron of the Royal Academy of Dance is her Royal Highness the Duchess of Cornwall.

How Strict are RAD Exams?

The RAD have organised a system that includes a number of different exams and assessments as students move through their different syllabi including those suitable for a wide range of age groups. They have a graded system with a big focus on creativity and musicality with all who pass the exams receiving a certificate of achievement as well as medals in some cases.

Ballet teachers are responsible for deciding when a student is ready to take an exam and to move them through the different levels. However, there are target age groups for the different stages to help give an idea of when a child may be ready to progress.

Children must be five years old before they can start the graded syllabus.

The following minimum ages apply:

Grade 4 - age 10yrs , Grade 5 - age 11yrs , Vocational levels - 11+ years : Intermediate , Advanced 1 & 2 , Solo Seal

Young Woman Ballet Dancer Performing

Open Classes

AGA welcomes all dancers who would like to attend a class with us on a casual basis.

We offer a selection of Classical and Contemporary dance classes for all ages from youth to pre professionals as well as beginner and Advanced Adult ballet.

For those of you who are passionate about wanting to extend your learning, meet new people and experience our beautiful studio environments with our amazing selection of professional tutors feel free to join us for class to be inspired and energised!

Contact us for our current timetable to select your chosen class/es

Casual Class rate - $30 per class


Term Fee - $250 per Term (10 classes)

Beauty of ballet

National Affiliate Programme

National Training Programme (NTP)

We are thrilled to welcome new students into our 2024 National Affiliate Training Programme!

Our NTP (originally called NCP) has been in operation since 2012, since that time, there have been a significant number of NTP students who have joined our Full-Time Program and successfully moved on to Professional schools then gained Company contracts.

NTP students may attend our Christchurch-based programmes conducted in school terms for as little or as long as personal circumstances allow. For example, some students may attend for 3 consecutive days; others may visit once per month or for 2 weeks consecutively. Students are invited to join our BESPOKE and Atelier Programme classes.

we invite students who are wanting to extend themselves and their dance development.

Acceptance into this programme is by private or video audition.


We are very proud of the wonderful tutors involved in our school.

They all have a rich and successful background in their chosen professions and come to our school with a wealth of experience, knowledge and skill. It is their combined talents focused on fully developing our students in their chosen art form that sets us apart.

Anneliese Gilberd

Royal NZ Ballet

ARAD, Diploma in Dance


Anneliese Gilberd is a distinguished ballet dancer known for her grace, elegance, and captivating performances. Born with a passion for dance, Anneliese began her journey in the world of ballet at the young age of 5 with the Lynne Harrison Acedmy of Dance in Wellington

Her illustrious career led her to become a prominent member of the prestigious Royal New Zealand Ballet (RNZB) , where she showcased her talent on both national and international stages. Anneliese's repertoire spans a wide range of classical and contemporary ballet, enchanting audiences with her emotive storytelling and exquisite technique.

Anneliese's dedication to her craft has been recognised through numerous accolades, including the prestigious AGC Young Achiever Award, highlighting her outstanding achievements and commitment to excellence. Her talent also earned her a coveted scholarship to the Royal Ballet School in London, awarded by the Royal Academy of Dance (RAD), where she further refined her skills under the guidance of world renowned instructors.

Anneliese's pursuit of excellence earned her a place as a Finalist in the esteemed Adeline Genee Award in London, a testament to her exceptional talent and dedication to the art of ballet.

As a seasoned performer and educator, Anneliese brings a wealth of experience to her role as the Director of the Anneliese Gilberd Academy. Her commitment to nurturing young talent and instilling a love for dance is evident in her teaching approach, where she combines technical precision with artistic expression.

With her guidance, aspiring dancers at AGA are empowered to reach new heights of artistic excellence and personal growth, embodying the timeless beauty and artistry of ballet under the mentorship of a true luminary in the field.

Anneliese Gilberd

Abigail Boyle

Royal NZ Ballet

RAD Professional Dancers Postgraduate Teaching Certificate

Classical Tutor

Abigail Boyle was born and trained in New Zealand, joining the Royal New Zealand Ballet in 2006. She has received acclaim for her performances in both classical and contemporary works and inspired many choreographers to create roles especially for her. During her time with RNZB, Abigail danced soloist and principal roles and was appointed Ballet Mistress for Tutus on Tour 2017. In addition to Ballet, Abigail starred in the TV series ‘Secret Lives of Dancers’, Toa Fraser’s ‘Giselle’ (2013), and ‘The Heart Dancers’, a documentary film concerning the development of the making of The Piano: The Ballet, by Rebecca Tansley (2018). Abigail is celebrated as “one of New Zealand’s finest stage artists of recent years” recognised for her authentic, honest, fluid, and expressive style. Abigail’s principal roles include Carmen in Didy Veldman’s Carmen, Odette/Odile in Russell Kerr’s Swan Lake, Aurora in Greg Horsman’s The Sleeping Beauty, Myrtha in Ethan Stiefel, and Johan Kobborg’s Giselle and Ada in Jiří Bubeníček The Piano: The Ballet. Her final ballet, Artemis Rising, was written as a celebration of her career. Critics acclaimed her “power, sensitivity and effortless grace”, concluding that “Boyle is emerging from a remarkable thirteen-year career with the Royal New Zealand Ballet, a woman and an artist in ascension”. Following retirement in early 2019, Abigail completed the Professional Dancers’ Postgraduate Teaching Certificate with the Royal Academy of Dance and founded her own ballet coaching company, Abigail Dance Coaching. Abigail joined AGA as the Senior Classical tutor in 2024 where she looks forward to sharing her knowledge and vast experience, as well as inspiring and motivatingall the students at our academy.

Richard Hansen

Business Manager

Richard is Anneliese's husband and manages the day to day business affairs of the academy. He is a multi award winning TV producer. His producing credits include New Zealand Idol, New Zealand's Got Talent, 2000 Today (Global Millennium Television Special), and The World Of Wearable Art Awards TV Specials.

Lucy Chung

Contemporary Tutor

Lucy Chung is originally from Whakatü, Nelson and is of Chinese and Päkehã descent. Lucy has always had a passion for dance, training in ballet, contemporary and jazz as she was growing up. In 2018 she attended Anneliese Gilberd Academy where she trained for a year before being accepted into The New Zealand School of Dance. Lucy graduated as a contemporary major from The New Zealand School of Dance in 2021. Since then she has worked with Chrissie Parrott as part of Deco Dance and was chosen as a member of Footnote's annual ChoreoCo show choreographed by Elijah Kennar.

Lucy is excited to return to AGA as a tutor whilst she studies osteopathy at Ara.

Louisa Potter

Dance Pilates Tutor

Originally from the Kãpiti Coast, Louisa found her love of movement and teaching through dance. Having studied at the New Zealand School of Dance and discovering Pilates with Jocelyn McGregor, and a brief stint as a dancer, both in New Zealand and the UK, she went on to train in London with the UK’s leading Pilates expert, Alan Herdman, in 2003. Louisa worked in his Marylebone studio for the following 10 years gaining valuable experience and guidance from Alan and his network of teachers and collaborators.

In addition to working with the general population at Alan's, and several other London studios, Louisa particularly valued her time working with young adults,16-22, at Millennium Dance vocational stage school 2004-2011 and the last 15 years teaching at London’s Central School of Ballet’s senior school, this job was an absolute joy, challenging and extremely rewarding and she was only drawn away by the call of home.

Louisa returned home to New Zealand in 2023 with her husband and two boys to bring up her family in beautiful Aotearoa :)

Therese Coffey

Dip Sports Education

Stott Pilates Tutor

Therese is a qualified Stott Pilates practitioner and holds a sports education diploma in personal training, sports nutrition, sports therapy and aromatherapy. She tutors Pilates to assist our AGA dancers with strength and flexibility while also improving muscular balance, co-ordination and injury rehabilitation.

Maureen Coulter


RAD & Character Tutor

Dr Maureen Coulter is a qualified and registered Royal Academy of Dance teacher with many years experience training students for both the RAD grade and vocational exams. She operated her own dance school in Christchurch for 15 years, later working as a free-lance ballet teacher while pursuing university studies and gaining a degree in secondary teaching.

In 2004 Maureen was awarded her PhD which examined the role of the dancer as an aesthetic icon of Symbolist literature.

In 2005 Maureen moved to Hong Kong to teach English Literature at YMCA Christian College, where she also introduced Drama classes and developed a Performing Arts programme, including Dance. She directed, choreographed and designed annual school musical theatre productionsand qualified as a Cambridge Drama examiner and gained the LAMDA Teaching Certificate in Communication.

During her time in Hong Kong, Maureen maintained her ballet training and taught Dance History and Dance Aesthetics at the Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts. She also trained as a flamenco dancer, performing regularly with the Clara Ramona Flamenca dance troupe.

On her return to Christchurch in 2017, Maureen established her own Flamenco dance academy, Flamenco del Sur, andresumed ballet teaching, successfully training students for RAD vocational exams. In 2022 and 2023 Maureen was engaged by the RAD as a Mentor for trainee ballet teachers.

Eve Condon

NZ Certificate in Exercise

New Zealand School of Dance - Certificate in Dance Performance

NZ Certificate in Study & Employment

Pathways - Major - Health Promotion

Health & Wellness Tutor

Eve is a graduate of AGA and trained at the New Zealand School of Dance as a Classical Major. While there she gained knowledge, expertise and wisdom from many world class tutors and artists. She graduated from the NZSD in 2019 with a Diploma in Dance Performance. Eve is now sharing her own wisdom, expertise and passion with the next generation of dancers and plans to combine her dance training with the health and fitness industry.


Anneliese Gilberd Academy

Level 2, Papa Hou

4 Rolleston Avenue

Central City


0211 763 653

Ballet dancer performing on stage in theate