Loughlan Prior is an award winning Aussie/Kiwi choreographer, fusing both classical and contemporary dance to construct narrative and virtuosic performance works.
He is the Choreographer in Residence at the ROYAL NEW ZEALAND BALLET and the Creative Director of PRIOR VISUAL, a project based film collective.
A graduate of the New Zealand School of Dance, his choreographic work began as early as his first school years where he received the Warrandyte Youth Arts Award. He joined the Royal New Zealand Ballet in 2010, and in 2015 was awarded the Harry Haythorne Choreographic Award by the Ballet Foundation of New Zealand. In 2016, Loughlan received the Tup Lang Choreographic Award from Creative New Zealand and was appointed to Choreographer in Residence by Artistic Director Patricia Barker in 2018.
Prior is passionate about producing theatre, film and multi-media projects; DANZ (Dance Aotearoa New Zealand) proclaimed him 'a creative tour de force’ in 2017. To date his stage and screen work has been presented in New Zealand, Australia, Canada, Denmark, Hong Kong, Germany and the United States.
He has created a number of acclaimed works for the Royal New Zealand Ballet; his choreographic style being described by the New Zealand Herald as 'dance that uses extreme geometries, refinement and innovative partnering.’ His works for the Royal New Zealand Ballet include Diminished Illusions, EVE, LARK, Ideale, The Long and the Short of It and Toi Art; a short film in collaboration with Te Papa Museum to launch the new National Gallery Collection.
As a soloist with the Royal New Zealand Ballet he has danced a variety of contemporary and classical roles in works by noted choreographers George Balanchine, William Forsythe, Jiří Kylián, Alexander Ekman, Andonis Foniadakis, Liam Scarlett, Benjamin Millepied, Paul Taylor, David Dawson, Penny Saunders, Larry Kegwin, Javier De Frutos, John Cranko, Daniel Belton, Christopher Hampson, Didy Veldman, Mark Baldwin, Sarah Foster-Sproull and Garry Stewart.
In 2016, Ideale, a duet created for Laura Saxon Jones and William Fitzgerald, was featured as a special guest appearance from Royal New Zealand Ballet on TV3's popular primetime show DANCING WITH THE STARS. Curious Alchemy, created for the New Zealand School of Dance in 2017, premiered at Toronto’s Assemblée Internationale, hosted by the National Ballet School of Canada, and was performed later at the School’s 50th Anniversary Celebration programme. Dance Europe described the work as a display of 'complex partnering, precision and confidence'.
In 2018 the Royal New Zealand Ballet presented The Long and the Short of It in the companies Tutus on Tour Programme, featuring legendary Kiwi performer Sir Jon Trimmer. His work They/Them premiered at Grand Rapids Ballet in February as part of the companies MoveMedia Programme and his work Mosaik, created for the Palucca Hoschule für Tanz, premiered in May at the SemperOper Dresden, Germany.
In 2019 Prior will premiere a new work The Appearance of Colour for Queensland Ballet's contemporary program Bespoke, at the Brisbane Powerhouse Theatre. He will also premiere HANSEL & GRETEL, a brand new full-length production for the Royal New Zealand Ballet, with a specially commissioned score by New Zealand composer Claire Cowan and designs by Kate Hawley.
In 2014 PRIOR VISUAL was initiated out of a desire to explore dance and film integration. The goal was to promote a playground for the creation of a number of short film works.
Memory House premiered at the New Zealand International Film Festival in 2014, later screening at the Film Society of Lincoln Centre's Dance on Camera Festival in 2015. DAVID, a collaborative production between the Royal New Zealand Ballet and leading New Zealand fashion house Zambesi, premiered at the Short Film Corner of the Cannes Film Festival in 2015.
Outlier, a project in collaboration with Melbourne artist Andrew Treloar, received second prize in the Danish #60secondsdance film competition in 2017. Genome, in collaboration with visual artist Max Patté and cinematographer Jeremy Brick, was featured in Wellington's LUX Festival and screened at the San Fransisco Dance Film Festival in 2016.
The Horizon from Owhiro Bay, created in 2018, takes its title from New Zealand composer Gareth Farr's piano work of the same name and features Canadian-born RNZB dancer Sara Garbowski and New Zealand dancer Harrison James, Principal at the The National Ballet of Canada.
A constantly working mind with a burning passion for creation
- Dance Aotearoa New Zealand
A display of complex partnering, precision and confidence
- Dance Europe
Loaded with choreographic energy and ideas
Snappy pas de deux, and slick duets
- Dance Australia
Prior is certainly a name to watch
- Lucire, NZ