Our Director, Emma Staltari together with, Event Manager Sian Jackson have worked alongside each other in the industry for the last 7 years.


Our company DanceAUS Group, has built a 30 + location wide network for dance in South Australia with a national network plan currently being delivered.
We have also worked in many other performing arts events and programmes delivering vocal, dance and theatre.

Our core values and purpose has led us to the Schools Challenge event, being ‘inspiring people through the performing arts’.

In talking to many teachers who haven’t yet found the right program to be involved in, we have listened, and WE ARE HERE!

In being a part of the Schools Challenge, you will be cared for with the biggest hearts in the biz!

Emma Staltari


Emma began her performing arts journey in 1991 at the age of six, enrolling at a local dance school on the Fleurieu Peninsula where she learnt dance for the next 11 years and in 2000 became an assistant dance teacher at the school.

She was a co-ordinator of many dance programmes through secondary school years choreographing Eisteddfods, dance productions and concerts. Emma was also a youth leader for a government programme, Active8. Through this group she travelled interstate to conferences working with youth and leadership. She also had the opportunity to work with various arts organisations such as Carclew Youth Arts, Country Arts SA and AIT Arts while with the Active8 programme.

In October of 2003 at 18 years of age, Emma registered her own business known as DanceSA. Our company DanceAUS Group, has built a 30 + location wide network for performing arts in South Australia with a national network plan in the works.

Emma also founded and directed the Adelaide Festival Centre’s On Stage holiday performing arts programme in its first three years.

"Creating an opportunity for thousands of students, who are able to experience the benefits of performing arts is aligned with my purpose and amongst my greatest achievements. I continuously strive to further my knowledge in the performing arts, events and business management through courses and specialised coaching."

Sian Jackson

Event Manager

Sian was first introduced to dance at age 3. She started with ballet, then added jazz, tap, contemporary, hip hop, musical theatre and Brazilian samba to her repertoire.

Sian successfully completed SACE dance and gained a Certificate IV in Dance in 2012. She has worked with international choreographers and was invited to audition for Cirque Du Soleil in Montreal and the Australian Ballet School. Sian has completed and passed all Cecchetti exams up to Advanced 1 and is currently studying to undertake the Cecchetti teachers exam. You can see Sian dancing with Brazilian Dance Fusion, performing in floor shows and at events across the state.

2019 marks 10 years of teaching for Sian and she loves working with students of all ages to make their dreams a reality. She teaches at multiple dance schools and in primary schools as well as teaching dance programmes at the Adelaide Festival Centre. Sian cannot wait to see stories come alive with the Schools Challenge!

Josh Smart

Technical Advisor

Josh has worked in Technical Production since school, moving on to study at the Adelaide College for the Arts. Alongside this Josh started his own business, Smart AudioVisual in 2009.

Josh has worked for Country Arts SA, Staging Connections, HAYCOM, The Garden of Unearthly Delights and Brighton Performing Arts Centre.

Josh has worked on events large and small, including The Rolling Stones, ACDC, Soundwave and Big Day Out, and is currently Head of Sound at Central Audio Visual and Adelaide Oval.

We are privileged to have Josh in our team.

Adam Moore

Technical Advisor

 Adam has worked in the video industry for the last 15 years including stage manager for many conventions in Adelaide.

He has produced Title Reels for Supernatural, The Vampire Diaries and Dr Who Conferences.

He has had the privilege of working with William Shatner, Robert Englund, Billy Piper, Billy Boyd, Matt Smith, Karen Gillan, Benedict Cumberbatch, Jason Momoa and many more international stars.

Adam currently runs EventClips specialising in the production of dance and event videos.

Andrew Costello (Cosi)

Event Host

Cosi was born in Murray Bridge and then grew up in Kadina on the Yorke Peninsula. Cosi joined Amanda Blair and James Brayshaw on the SAFM team after winning the SAFM GREAT RACE in 2000.

SOUTH AUSSIE WITH COSI is now a household name in SA and has been on air over 6 years! It combines Cosi’s three loves his family, his state and travelling. Cosi is all things South Australian, he is proud and passionate about his state and wouldn’t live anywhere else.

Cosi won the Young Journalist Of The Year Award for his report on homelessness. He also picked up the Australia Commercial Radio Award for Best Documentary 'Rising Homelessness'.

Cosi’s tireless efforts to make a difference through the Cows for Cambodia project shine bright and shows a force of human kindness.

He currently is part of the Hit107 breakfast radio team, broadcasting a fun and relatable radio show to listeners across Adelaide!

Cosi has one of the states strongest social media followings with over 250,000 South Aussies following his daily movements on social media!

Cosi is a family man and loves his beautiful wife Sam and their three children!

Sean Riley


Sean Riley is an award-winning playwright & director, and is considered one of Australia's leading creators of theatre for and by young people.  His most recent work, This Bloody House, premiered in 2018. Grave Child, premiered at the 2017 DreamBig Festival by SAYarts in association with S.A History Trust.  His play, Aftershocks toured metropolitan schools in 2016, and  Warren, was premiered by SAYarts in September 2014.


Prior to this, The Visitors and One by One; Urban Myth Theatre Company for Come Out 2013.  His plays Skip Miller’s Hit Songs, and Also a Mirror, were premiered by Brink Productions and Urban Myth Theatre Company respectively, for the 2011 Adelaide Fringe Festival.  In 2008, his play The Angel and the Red Priest premiered at the 2008 Adelaide Festival of the Arts.


His play for young audiences, Beautiful Words was premiered by Oddbodies Theatre Company to enormous critical acclaim in May 2006, winning the Adelaide Theatre Guide’s Award for Best Dramatic Production of the 2005/06  season and the Adelaide Theatre Critic’s Award for Best New Play. Prior to its opening, Beautiful Words won the Jill Blewett Playwrights Award in 2004 and was short-listed for the Patrick White Playwrights Award. The play was  published by Currency Press in May 2008, and is on the SACE reading list.

Larissa McGowan


Born in Brisbane, Larissa began her dance training at the Queensland Dance School of Excellence (QDSE), where she won the Queensland Ballet Scholarship to the Victorian College of the Arts (VCA), as well as the prize for 'Most Outstanding Dancer’. In her graduating year at VCA, Larissa won the award for 'Most Outstanding Talent'.


Larissa joined ADT in 2000 and has since toured extensively worldwide performing in Be Yourself, G, Devolution, HELD, Vocabulary, Nothing, The Age of Unbeauty, Birdbrain and Attention Deficit Therapy. In 2008 Garry Stewart named Larissa, Associate Choreographer. Larissa was also Co-choreographer of Habitus for 2016 Adelaide Festival.


Following winning the 2003 Green Room Award for Best Female Dancer, Larissa won multiple awards in 2004, including Best Female Dancer in a Ballet or Dance Work at the Helpmann Awards and the Australian Dance Award for Outstanding Performance by a Female Dancer.

Her work, Zero-sum, made its world premiere at WOMADelaide 2009. She followed this up with a highly successful appearance as a guest choreographer on two seasons of So You Think You Can Dance. Her work Slack was part of the Sydney Opera House's New Breed season & remounted in 2012 for Link Dance Company. She created Transducer as part of Tasdance’s double bill ‘Voltage’ & remounted as part of Co:3’s premier launch. Her work Skeleton premiered in the 2013 Adelaide Festival and Dance Massive. It also toured to the Dublin Dance Festival and nominated for the 2014 Australian Dance Awards. Fanatic was made on Sydney Dance Company, which premiered in Spring Dance, Contemporary Woman and toured nationally as part of SDC’s triple bill season De Novo. Larissa’s work Mortal Condition premiered in 2016 at the Adelaide Festival Centre and again at the Adelaide Fringe Festival 2017.

She has made works for students at VCA, AcARTS, Ev & Bow, ADT Youth Ensemble. Additional movement direction includes, Slingsby Theatre Company’s Wolf, State Theatre Company of SA’s Romeo & Juliet, Mneumonic and Little Bird, Brink Theatre Company’s Harbinger, Mass presented by State Opera of South Australia. Rehearsal Direction for Tasdance, Gravity & Other Myths, Restless Dance Theatre and Assistant Choreographer for The Boy Castaways by Michael Kantor. Video clip choreography includes Megan Washington’s Saint Lo & Claws, Sheppard’s Edge of the Night & Coming Home, Jessica Mauboy’s Sunday, Montaigne’s Ready. From 2015-17, Larissa was curator of DanceXtend for Country Art SA. She has been Adelaide Fringe Festivals Parade choreographer. She performed in Jerome Bell’s Gala at the 2017 Adelaide Festival and Brink Productions Memorial in 2018. Larissa recently choreographed Playlist, PYT Fairfield and premiered her solo work Cher at the 2019 Adelaide Cabaret Festival.

Ryan Turner


Ryan is an experienced dancer from Adelaide with over 15 years of dancing, performing and choreographing.

He is a performer and choreographer with Ding Productions and has choreographed dance pieces for the Adelaide Strikers, Adelaide 36ers, Australian Cricket T20 Tour of Australia, BMW Mini launch and Variety SA Gala Ball.

Ryan is also the director of ADM ‘Adelaide Dance Movement’. In addition he is a head Hip Hop teacher and choreographer at various dance studios across South Australia.

Ryan teachers a variety of Hip Hop Dance styles for all levels of dance experience which has evolved during his visits to USA where he learned from many notable teachers.


Schools Challenge is Australia newest performing arts event for schools.