18 February 2023

Teaching artist Cassandra Wynan ready to make a difference in her community

| Shri Gayathirie Rajen
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NIDA CONNECT's Acting and Performance teaching artist Cassandra Wayne

NIDA CONNECT’s Acting and Performance teaching artist Cassandra Wynan. Photo: Supplied.

Leeton-born and bred Cassandra Wynan is hoping to share her love of arts and encourage her students to explore and extend their own creativity and skills.

Cassandra has been chosen to teach the Acting for Performance strand of the National Institute of Dramatic Arts’ (NIDA) regional program NIDA CONNECT at the Roxy Institute of Performing Arts (RIPA) in Leeton.

NIDA CONNECT is a national program designed for and dedicated to outer metropolitan and regional communities across Australia and provides a wide range of creative opportunities across live and digital storytelling.

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The program will provide access to world-class creative industry training for local teaching artists and aspiring young people – regional students aged 15 to 18 looking to train in acting, writing, design and technical production.

Cassandra told Region that being chosen as one of the four teaching artist’s for NIDA’s regional program was an exciting opportunity to upskill and to share her “love for the arts with the amazingly supportive regional community”.

“This is an extremely significant program for our community as it is providing our regional students with extensive creative and performing arts opportunities outside of the city,” Cassandra said.

Leeton High School

As a teacher at Leeton High School, Cassandra put on musicals every two years. Photo: Supplied.

“Students can then share their passion and experiences with others, utilising this knowledge in our community for future productions in our Leeton Roxy Community Theatre.”

Cassandra studied a Bachelor of Arts (acting) and then completed a Masters of Teaching (secondary), both at Charles Sturt University in Wagga.

Since graduating, she has been a drama and visual arts teacher at Leeton High School.

“At [Leeton High School], we put on a school musical every two years,” Cassandra said. “My first year was the musical Back to the 80’s (2019), followed by Shrek the Musical (2021) and then this year, we are excitedly starting rehearsals for School of Rock the Musical (2023).”

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She has also done courses with Bell Shakespeare in Sydney, and participated in community theatre productions, including acting in the Leeton Roxy Theatre’s production of Henry V, alongside Jake Speer.

Teaching and making a difference to the students are satisfying for Cassandra.

“It’s a rewarding experience to be working with passionate and like-minded students who find pure joy, developing confidence and expression in the performing arts,” she said.

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