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Dance Academy is an Australian television series that focuses on the efforts of a group of hopeful young dancers at The National Academy of Dance who aspire to become members of a professional company. Xenia Goodwin plays Tara Webster, a naive young girl from the outback who dreams of becoming a principal dancer one day. Her struggles to adjust to the competitive and strenuous lifestyle at the Academy make up the bulk of the series.

Dance Academy was created by Joanna Werner and Samantha Strauss. It is a co-production of the German channel ZDF, Australia's ABC, Werner Films Productions, Screen Australia, Film Victoria and Film New South Wales. Casting for the series was completed in 2009 and included auditions based on the actors' abilities in dancing and drama. The first series premiered on ABC1 on 31 May 2010. The series won several awards, including a Silver Logie Award for Most Outstanding Children's Program in 2011. The second series premiered on ABC3 on 12 March 2012.

The first series centres on Tara's struggle to adapt to the challenging and fast-paced life at the Academy. Her best friend Katrina is the daughter of a world famous prima ballerina, but takes her position for granted. Kat's half brother Ethan catches Tara's eye, but he is older than her and wants to concentrate on the creative side of dance to follow in his father's footsteps and become a famous choreographer. Meanwhile, Sammy struggles between his love of dance and his father's desire that he pursue a medical career. Ambitious Abigail has no qualms about stepping on any of her classmates in her quest for the top, while Christian only comes to the Academy because his only other option is a juvenile correctional centre.

Monday 9:00 PM et/pt on ABC3
3 Seasons, 66 Episodes
May 31, 2010
Drama, Kids & Family, Music
Cast: Xenia Goodwin, Alicia Banit, Dena Kaplan, Jordan Rodrigues
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Dance Academy Full Episode Guide

  • In their Company interviews, the students finally learn if they will receive a professional contract with the National Ballet Company.

  • Auditions for the Company have arrived, rousing superstitions, old rivalries and the performances that will determine the rest of the dancers' lives.

  • The final auditions are approaching, but the dancers learn it'll be a whole new playing field; Christian and Tara come to a resolution.

  • Christian and Ollie prepare for a major hip-hop competition, Kat prepares to audition for a minor role in Coppelia, and Ben takes a stab at revenge.

  • A career-making opportunity brings out the best and worst in everyone, and an injury that sidelines Ollie prompts him to use someone to get ahead.

  • The Third Years teach a class to a group of local kids, Tara feels old wounds re-opening, and Abigail has to face her past before she can let it go.

  • Grace seems to have found a perfect match with life on the road, until Zach clamps down on declining standards during the Third Year regional tour.

  • Abigail auditions for a guest role in a dance movie, while Grace does everything she can to ensure she's allowed to go on the Third Year tour.

  • Saskia schemes to arrange an early audition for her favorite student, but has disastrous results; Ollie creates a professional music video.

  • Ben has to choose between the girl he cares for and the opportunity to partner with a principal dancer, while Ollie challenges Abigail to a dance-off.

  • It's an overwhelming first few days for the fill-in dancers. Christian continues to shirk responsibility and avoid returning to the Academy.

  • Tara's plans for Abigail's surprise party clash with a tantalizing opportunity for Third Years to audition for the National Company's current ballet.

  • Abigail and Tara team up against a formidable enemy and Christian has to choose between being with the girl he loves and his desire to escape.

  • Fighting shock and numbness after a sudden tragedy, Tara is struggling to find her motivation as dancer.

  • Sammy decides to alter his Prix de Fonteyn solo one day before the start of the International Round.

  • Ben tries a variety of tactics in rehearsals for "Peter Pan" to prove to Tara that he's a leading man.

  • Grace continues to make a play for Zach's attention, leading her to manufacture a serious accusation.

  • The Academy students experience stinging prejudice from the judges during the National Round of the Prix de Fonteyn.

  • Abigail's best efforts to balance her ballet commitments with the fringe musical splinter when a leaked staff email discounts her chances in the Prix de Fonteyn and her over-supportive mother Anthea unexpectedly arrives at the Academy.

  • Abigail's efforts to balance her ballet commitments with the fringe musical splinter when a leaked email discounts her chances in the Prix de Fonteyn.

  • Tara hunts for a new crush, and the director of a fringe musical tries to convince Abigail to be the star of his show.

  • During an excursion to the circus, Christian's dad makes promises he's unable to keep.

  • Tara becomes unhinged when Grace tempts her to get less serious.

  • Sammy and Ollie's friendship heads into new territory when they go on a road trip so that Sammy can compete in a Prix de Fonteyn regional round.

  • As Tara negotiates her return to the Academy, Ethan's search for ongoing employment leads him to accept a position choreographing a fringe musical.

  • While recovering from her broken back, Tara discovers a hidden side to Ben.

  • Tara risks serious injury and possible expulsion to compete in the Prix de Fonteyn preliminary round.

  • Saskia's bullying of Tara results in a painful injury. Kat convinces Miss Raine to grant her an audition to return to the Academy.

  • Grace encourages Tara to take action against Saskia's cruel treatment of her.

  • Sammy returns home for his Grandpa Morrie's funeral and to ask his father to support his Academy tuition.

  • Exams are over, and with one night of freedom, both the boys and the girls go on a mission to prove they'll have more fun without each other.

  • Realizing that Saskia's continuing critique of her dancing could jeopardize her midyear exams, Tara takes action.

  • Concerned that the time she spends with Christian is cutting into her dance study, Tara suggests that they "pause" their relationship.

  • Sammy's little brother Ari arrives at the Academy, making Sammy's hectic schedule even more chaotic.

  • Ethan clashes with Abigail in his attempt to create a spectacular dance performance for the showcase.

  • Tara is overjoyed when starlet Saskia Duncan is appointed to teach the Academy second years.

  • Kat's struggle to find friends at normal school brightens when she's able to choreograph a project for drama class.

  • Tara finds a new hero in Saskia Duncan, the youngest principal dancer in the Company's history.

  • In the Middle, Somewhat ElevatedTara reunites with her friends for her second year at the Academy and learns exciting news about a prestigious dance competition.

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