TAPAC was created by the community for the community. It is the product of a long term commitment from a core group of dedicated Aucklanders with a passion for the performing arts.
The idea for TAPAC was born in the late 1980s, as the Performing Arts School of NZ under the Artistic Direction of Jo Kelly, accelerated in capacity and demand. Unitec’s Screen and Performing Arts Department evolved to fulfil some of this need, but it was decided that the community also needed its own performing arts school – somewhere that catered for all levels of expertise, from established professionals to emerging artists and community groups.
Performing arts stalwarts Jo Kelly, Wendy Preston MNZM and Maggie Eyre drove this vision forward. In the late 90’s, they were joined by artist Barbara Ward, who helped TAPAC find a home in the grounds of Western Springs College. WSC’S Principal, the late Ken Havill, lent his support to the project.
Together they lobbied potential stakeholders and investors for a shared community space where performing artists could rehearse, perform, learn and connect with other like-minded creatives.