More than 50 years later, NIDA has grown to 170 full-time students annually, approximately 70 full-time staff members and added courses in acting, directing, writing for performance, design for performance, technical theatre and stage management, costume, properties and objects, cultural leadership, voice and staging.
- In February, Robert Quentin, the founding director of NIDA, holds the first acting class; he hopes to break away from the ‘shadow to English understatement’ and develop a distinctly Australian style of acting
- NIDA’s first play is Thornton Wilder’s Our Town
- The first NIDA productions are staged in the Physics Lecture Theatre and Science Theatre of the University of New South Wales (UNSW)
- NIDA moves to its new home, The White House and old Totalisator building at UNSW, and stays there until December 1987
Old Tote Theatre
- Opens at UNSW
- NIDA establishes The Old Tote Theatre Company
- NIDA establishes the Jane Street Season of Australian and classical plays in association with the NIDA Advanced Course
- The Old Tote Theatre Company separates from NIDA to become in independent company
- UNSW’s ‘Old Tin Shed’ was renamed as the NIDA Theatre
- NIDA moves to its new building with construction generously supported by the Commonwealth Government, located adjacent to the Parade Theatre on Anzac Parade
- NIDA applies to the Centenary of Federation Fund and there is promise of a new theatre
- The new NIDA building is officially opened by The Honourable John Howard MP, Prime Minister of Australia
- The renovated building wins the Sulman Award for public architecture
NIDA Open Program
- NIDA Open Program is established
- Final performance in the old Parade Theatre on 24 October – the play is Stephan Jeffrey’s The Libertine
- New Parade Theatre is officially opened by Mel Gibson, who contributed generously to the building fund
- First Parade Theatre production is the Australian premiere of Nick Enright’s Country Music
And the rest...
- During the Sydney Olympic Games, NIDA contributes the only original production to the Sydney 2000 Olympic Arts Festival with There’s No Need to Wake Up
- NIDA opens with a two-year course in Acting
- A two-year Production course is added
- Both the Acting and Production courses become three-year courses
- A three-year Design course and a one-year graduate course in Directing are introduced
- A two-year Associate Diploma Course in Theatre Crafts (specialising in either scenery, properties and costume) is introduced
- Three one-year graduate diploma courses in Voice Studies, Movement Studies and Production Management are introduced
- Bachelor of Dramatic Art is replaced the Diploma of Dramatic Art for students of Acting, Technical Production and Design
- Bachelor of Dramatic Art in Production Crafts replaces the Associate Diploma in Theatre Crafts
- Advanced Diploma of Dramatic Art in Scenery Construction is introduced
- Accreditation of a one-year Master of Dramatic Art in three streams: Voice Studies, Movement Studies and Directing (a Playwriting stream was accredited in 2006)
- Bachelor of Dramatic Art in Production replaces the Bachelor of Dramatic Art in Technical Production
Awards and acknowledgements
- Milia d’Or Award for Best Educational Title (2000)
- Australian Interactive Multimedia Industry Association (AIMIA) Award for Best Arts and Cultural Title or Website (1999)
- Winner of the New York Festivals International Interactive Multimedia Competition’s Gold Medal for Education (1999)
- British Film Academy of Film and Televisions Arts (BAFTA) award for Interactive Treatment (1998)
- The International EMMA award for Best Educational Product (1998)
- The International Emma Gold Award for Best Overall Product (1998)
- The Australian Senate congratulates NIDA on its great contribution to enriching Australia’s culture over the past 40 years.
History of the Theatres
NIDA Parade Theatres includes NIDA's five theatre spaces: Parade Theatre, Parade Playhouse, Parade Studio, Parade Space and the NIDA Atrium.
History of the NIDA Theatres
- The old Parade Theatre is converted from a lecture hall into a theatre space for the Old Tote Theatre Company.
- The Parade Theatre becomes NIDA’s main theatre.
- NIDA moves to its new building adjacent to the Parade Theatre on Anzac Parade.
- NIDA applies to the Centenary of Federation Fund to build a new theatre.
- Final performance in the old Parade Theatre on 24 October – the play is Stephan Jeffrey’s The Libertine.
- The Commonwealth Government’s historic building is replaced by the new NIDA Building funded from the Centenary of Federation Fund.
- The new NIDA building is officially opened by Prime Minister John Howard on 26 October.
- The renovated building wins the Sulman Award for Public Architecture.
- The new Parade Theatre is officially opened by Mel Gibson, who contributed generously to the building fund.
- The first production in the Parade Theatre production is the Australian premiere of Nick Enright’s Country Music, opening on 17 July.
- The second Parade Theatre production is the Australian premiere of John Clark’s Jarrabin, adapted from Dorothy Hewitt’s The Jarrabin Trilogy.
- NIDA undertakes a series of projects to expand and update the building, including:
- four new tutorial rooms
- an additional room accommodating 100 people
- the conversion of the NIDA Atrium into a fully-equipped, weather-proof outdoor theatre.
- NIDA expands its digital capability with: online learning management system and high definition video conferencing facilities.