He’s danced for some of the greatest dance companies in the world but tonight, in Maitland, Janos Szabo will face one of his biggest challenges yet. Earlier this year, the Hungarian ballet dancer took over the reins of the iconic East Maitland Dance Academy following the death of Maitland dance dame Daphne Parker and tonight Janos will stage his first concert in his role as principal and director of the dance school.


TRIBUTE: Janos Szabo with dancers Kate Fincher, Aimee Bennett, Isabella Moore, Victoria Scott and Shantelle Ibanez. Picture by Stuart Scott

“My goal is to serve in Daphne’s way and to do the best,” Janos said in an earlier interview with the Mercury. “It’s been a huge change coming from the professional dancing world to the dance teaching world, but Daphne was here to help me.” Ms Parker, or Miss Daphne as she was affectionately known, died late last year following her battle with cancer. She was 66. But the spirit of the Maitland dance legend has not faded.

“For Janos, turning to full-time teaching after a lifetime of dancing has given him the opportunity to share his knowledge and love of dance,” Janos’ wife Annabella Redman said. “The East Maitland Dance Academy has always been recognised for its standard of training and Janos is continuing this tradition.” Tonight’s concert will also include a tribute in memory of Ms Parker and a scholarship in her honour. The performance, at Maitland Town Hall, will start at 7pm and tickets are available at the door.