Paea Leach

Paea is a Ngāti Kuri (Northland Aotearoa) & Australian dance artist based in Naarm (Melbourne). Her creative and choreographic work, thinking, practise and sharing of dance is a weft of languages that deliberately entangle contemporary dance, feminist politics, bodily poetics, somatic practices and western medicine/science(s). Trained at WAAPA @ ECU (Perth), she worked for renowned companies Chunky Move, Eastman (Belgium), Australian Dance Theatre (2002 – 2016). She has been commissioned to work and create work within and beside cultures (Asialink artist in residence 2011, A.R.T resident Townsville 2021), communities (Back to Back theatre), festivals (Faux MO 2020) and to contribute as a performer to an array of independent dance and theatre projects. Currently, she will be found performing in improvisation evenings in Melbourne or contributing to intimate projects in undercurrent ways.

Paea has taught dance and movement to all kinds of humans and bodies – professionals, undergraduates, prison inmates – in Australia, Europe, Canada, Asia. She acts as mentor and sometimes dramaturge and facilitator and is the mother to two excellent children. Her Master of Fine Arts (MFA) by Research, undertaken at VCA/Uni Melbourne (completed 2020 with full scholarship), argued for a re-approach to the (overuse of) embodiment; instead building an argument for the potency of ‘something else’, naming it as kinaesthetic attention. This is where the work of the dancer resides; the essential ground from which complex velocities and affect are made emergent in the doing of the dancing. Further, that agency is something we feel and enact (or do not) bodily. To complexify the language and cast off into worlds of scientific enquiry, to weave the thinking back through the body conduit by looking from a different POV entirely, she is currently also a student of Osteopathy at RMIT (completion 2025), where neuroscience has been the most captivating journey thus far.

Acknowledgement of Country

Strut Dance acknowledges and pays respect to the past, present and future Traditional Custodians and Elders of this nation and the continuation of cultural, spiritual and educational practices of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples should be aware that this website may contain images or names of people who have passed away.