Saranja Crowe
Commissioner Leigh Johns, Sara Andrlon and Noah Dunlop. Photo by Lynette Wills

Chair of The Australian Ballet School joins the Order of Australia

Leigh Johns, Chairman of The Australian Ballet School, has been awarded a Medal of the Order of Australia (OAM) in the Australia Day Awards 2017.

Mr  Johns, a Fair Work Commissioner since March 2013, received the award for meritorious services to the community through the performing arts, primary health care and to industrial relations.

Mr Johns joined the Board of The Australian Ballet School in 2002 and became its Chairman in 2011. Lisa Pavane, Director of the School, has praised Mr John’s service to Australia's national centre for elite vocational classical dance.

“Leigh Johns has been a valuable contributor to The Australian Ballet School’s success over the years. As a board member and then as Chairman, Leigh has been instrumental in realising the aims of the School by striving to accomplish the visions and ambitions of its Directors during his tenure;  firstly for Marilyn Rowe OBE and now for myself. Leigh has applied his valuable guidance most recently to the School’s project of creating a Boarding Programme and through his considered oversight and skills engaging with stakeholders has seen Marilyn Rowe House open to boarders in 2016. We congratulate Leigh on this honour and thank him for his service to The Australian Ballet School.”
- Lisa Pavane

Mr Johns said he was truly honoured to receive the OAM for the volunteer work he had performed.

“As Australia’s national centre for elite vocational classical dance and the school of the Australian Ballet, The Australian Ballet School is an important national institution, and I feel blessed to be able to contribute in a small way to its important mission.
Seeing The Australian Ballet School produce dancers of the highest calibre for our parent company and companies around the world has been the greatest gift of my involvement.”
- Leigh Johns

Mr Johns also receives his OAM for services to Melbourne’s Inner South Community Health Service and Victoria’s premier Midsumma Festival.

Other health groups Mr Johns has been involved with include the YMCA from 1988-1993, Napier Street Aged Care Services from 1993-1999, the Victorian AIDS Council from 1997-98, the AIDS Trust of Australia from 1997-98 and Vic Health from 2005-2013.

Before his appointment to the Fair Work Commission, Mr Johns was previously Australian Building and Construction Commissioner and Chief Counsel at the Workplace Ombudsman. He is a barrister and solicitor who earlier worked for a number of leading law firms.

About the Australian Ballet School

As Australia's national centre for elite vocational classical dance and the school of The Australian Ballet, we aspire to be at the forefront, internationally, as providers of a unique, professional dance training programme that:

  • produces dancers with a distinctive Australian style
  • balances technique and artistry with educational needs and holistic care
  • trains teachers and develops the artistic leaders of the future
  • advances the art of ballet   

The Australian Ballet School will continue to produce dancers of the highest calibre for our parent company, The Australian Ballet and companies around the world. Our aim is to balance the rigorous demands of professional training with a creative, caring and challenging environment where excellence can flourish.

Our environment is conducive to producing artistic, educated and outstanding dancers of the highest international standard. We aim to nurture young talent so that every provision is made for the best to be the best – to guide students to develop into well-balanced human beings, with a strong ethical sense – well fed in body, mind and spirit.

Coming Soon

We invite you to join The Australian Ballet School at its performances in 2017.

9 May
Morning Melodies - Arts Centre Melbourne

June, July and October                 
Dancer’s Company Regional Tour

27 August                                           
Showcase 2017 at Arts Centre Melbourne

1 - 2 September                               
Showcase 2017 - Sydney

8 - 9 December
Coppélia - Arts Centre Melbourne




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