As the Artistic Director of Ulysses Dancers, Jane Pirani has choreographed many works since she co-founded Ulysses Dancers in 2007. Jane gives her time to Ulysses Dancers on a voluntary basis, investing in the region's performing arts development. Alongside her husband, Andre Reynaud, Jane is also a Director of the Ann Roberts School of Dancing.
Jane's mother Ann Roberts founded the school, and Jane trained at the school prior to leaving to study fine art at university. She is the mother of two adult children; Emmanuel and Isabelle, both of whom have developed their own careers in performing arts.
After completing her degree in fine arts, Jane become a professional dancer in France, where she worked for two years with Maggi Sietsma. It was in France that she met her future husband, Andre.
After returning to Australia, Jane taught dancing at the Ann Roberts School of Dance and in 1986 founded Extensions - the youth link to Dance North. Jane was Artistic Director of Extensions for eleven years before taking on the role of Artistic Director of Dance North in 1997, a position she held for seven years. During this time, Jane took the professional dance company to a national and international stage with new works produced each year by herself and guest choreographers. She worked collaboratively with other choreographers, producing unique works including Luuli, performed with the Lardil dancers from Woomera Aboriginal Islander Corporation, Mornington Island. This production toured across the top of Australia, regional Queensland and capital cities over three years.
Jane has worked as a freelance choreographer before and after her time with Dance North. She has choreographed works for Expressions, Queensland Ballet, Adelaide Centre for Performing Arts and Buzz Dance Theatre.
Her experience also includes work with young performers creating large scale productions that have toured Adelaide, Perth, Townsville, Brisbane, Xian City, China and Aberdeen, Scotland. In addition she has directed large scale community events such as VP50 where she worked with 650 school children to create a lantern extravaganza for the closing celebrations.
Jane is thrilled with the growth of performing arts in north Queensland and the development of contemporary dance in particular. By giving young dancers and emerging choreographers the opportunity to continue to develop their craft through participation in Ulysses Dancers, Jane is confident the artistic diversity within the region will continue to flourish.