Tara and her family’s lineage can be traced back to the Logan River region and the Munaldjali people. She is a direct descendent, and strongly identifies with her Indigenous history. She also acknowledges the rich tapestry that makes up her identity, the mix of First Australians and Scottish and Irish ancestors.
Tara was born and raised in Darwin, starting her journey into dance at a young age. Whilst growing up, Tara had the opportunity to be involved in the performing arts, working with dance companies including Juniper Tree Dance Collective, Gary Lang NT Dance Company, and Tracks Dance Company. Being involved with the dance community in Darwin led to rich exchanges with the Indigenous communities in the Northern Territory. Participating in residencies and teaching and leading workshops enabled Tara to gain invaluable insight into the living cultures in the northern part of Australia.
Tara completed a Bachelor of Dance Performance in 2007 at Adelaide Centre of the Arts. Her time here awakened her curiosity and depth of passion for dance. Her incredible teachers Lisa Heaven, Peter Sheedy and Sally Collard-Gentle imprinted on her early on in her studies and Tara continues to carry this knowledge with her. Whilst at ACArts, Tara worked with nationally and internationally with respected artists including Leanne Ringlestein, Troy Mundy, Aiden Kane-Munn, Lina Limusani. After graduating, Tara explored independent opportunities, which included choreographing a work-in-development for Imoves (2010), the dance film What Remains by Jason Lam, working as a Youth Leader with Kurruru Arts, Reel Dance (2010), Fringe at the Bank (2009), and a project with Betchay Mondragon to empower the long grass community through performance.
Tara joined Bangarra in 2011. She dove into the company, exploring culture and deepening her roots while sharing Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander stories on stage, in communities, and on Country. Tara saw sharing First Nations stories as both an honour and a great responsibility. During her time with Bangarra, Tara worked with Stephen Page, Frances Rings and other company Dancers and Choreographers during the creative process; these experiences are now part of her own personal dilly bag of knowledge, which she accesses when she is exploring choreography. Tara's highlights with the company include the International Tours of Spirit, ID (2011), and Blak (2013); the remount of the iconic work Ochres, especially her duet with Dancer Luke Currie-Richardson; and her nomination in Dance Australia Critics' Survey for her performance in the lead role in Brolga - the same role she was able to perform in her hometown.
Tara acknowledges two Rehearsal Directors that enriched her dancing and changed the way she approached movement, class, and her artistic practice. Catherine Goss was the first Rehearsal Director that helped shape Tara's beginning with the company. As a Senior Artist, Anton brought his cultivated insight into artistic process and artistic expression, providing opportunities to challenge Tara's pathways of moving, and mentoring her through teaching practices that led her to devising and teaching company class regularly.
Since leaving the company at the end of 2018, Tara has had the opportunity to progress her teaching practice further through the Pre-Professional Year at Sydney Dance Company, Brent Street, Dance Central and Methodist Ladies College.
She is also examining her own dance practice, “hoping to strip away the layers to reveal a truer, ‘authentic self’ and new integrity for movement pathways.” She aims to generate a dance language that is unique to herself and her heritage.