Dena Kaplan

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Dena Kaplan
Dena Kaplan at the 2012 AACTA Awards (6795417599).jpg
Kaplan at the 2012 AACTA Awards
Born Dena Amy Kaplan
(1989-01-20) 20 January 1989 (age 28)
Johannesburg, South Africa
Occupation Actress, dancer, model, DJ
Years active 2005–present
Relatives Gemma-Ashley Kaplan (sister)
Ariel Kaplan (sister)

Dena Amy Kaplan (born 20 January 1989) is a South African-born Australian actress, singer dancer, and DJ. She is best known for her role as Abigail Armstrong in Dance Academy.

Life and career[edit]

Kaplan was born in Johannesburg, South Africa. She has an older sister Gemma-Ashley Kaplan and a younger sister Ariel Kaplan. Ariel Kaplan is best known for her role as Lisa Atwood #2 on The Saddle Club. She moved to Australia in 1996, at age seven.[1] Kaplan lives in Sydney, Australia and enjoys traveling during her spare time.[2]

Kaplan attended Mount Scopus Memorial College and had dance training at numerous schools, including Australian Ballet School, Jane Moore Academy of Ballet and City Dance Centre. She first appeared onstage alongside David Campbell in The Production Company's Carousel, playing Louise, a non-singing solo ballet part in the second act of the show. Her second major appearance was as a dancer/singer in Disney's musical production of The Lion King.[3] She moved to New York City to study at the Ailey School and Broadway Dance Center, and was cast in a Broadway musical, but was unable to accept the offer. Kaplan's mother and grandmother were both ballet dancers. After watching Gemma taking ballet lessons Dena followed in her footsteps. A TV series that will star Gemma, Dena, and Ariel is currently being workshopped. [4] Kaplan's father was a musician and her grandfather was an actor.[5] Dena comes from a Jewish family.[6]

Her first television role was in 2005 on the Network Ten spy series Scooter: Secret Agent as one of the party girls.[7] In 2007, she appeared as Deborah Statesman in an episode of Australian police drama City Homicide.[8] In 2009, she played Keli in an episode of Flight Of The Conchords [9] and starred in the film In Her Skin alongside Rebecca Gibney. She was then cast in the series "Dance Academy"[10] and in the same year was cast as Stephanie Wolfe in City Homicide. In 2011, Kaplan starred as the love interest in Chris Sebastian's music video for "Flow". During 2013 she was cast in the role of Sarah Brennen in Camp.[11] Dena Kaplan is an ambassador for Soi Dog Foundation.[12] Kaplan and her sisters are ambassadors for The Australian Cervical Cancer Foundation.[13]


Kaplan with Jared Daperis, 2013
Film and television roles
Year Title Role Notes
2005 Scooter: Secret Agent[7] Party Girl Episode: "Operation: Double Oh"
2007 City Homicide[8] Deborah Statesman Episode: "The Ripe Fruits in the Garden"
2009 In Her Skin Pregnant Girl with Pram
2009 Flight of the Conchords[9] Keli Episode: "Unnatural Love"
2010 City Homicide Stephanie Wolfe Episode: "Atonement"
2010–13 Dance Academy[10] Abigail Armstrong Main role
2012 Tricky Business Minnesota Smith Recurring role
2012 Mrs Biggs Trish Episode: "1.5"
2013 Camp[11] Sarah Brennen Main role
2014 Doctor Blake Mysteries, TheThe Doctor Blake Mysteries Amelia Yorke Episode: "Crossing the Line"
2015 Della Mortika Beatrix Della Morte Short film; in post-production
2016 Honey 3: Dare to Dance Nadine Direct to video
2017 Dance Academy: The Movie Abigail Armstrong Theatrical Film


  1. ^ "Dena Kaplan". Archived from the original on 5 October 2010. Retrieved 10 July 2010. 
  2. ^ Dance Academy’s Jordan Rodrigues & Dena Kaplan
  3. ^ "Disney Ensemble Cast: Dena Caplan". Disney. Archived from the original on 27 July 2010. Retrieved 10 July 2010. 
  4. ^ Interview: Dena Kaplan
  5. ^ Neighbours' Ariel Kaplan on Imogen future: 'She has another freak-out'
  6. ^ Interview with new Neighbours star Ariel Kaplan
  7. ^ a b "Scooter: Secret Agent: episode guide". Retrieved 10 July 2010. 
  8. ^ a b "City Homicide: episode guide". Retrieved 10 July 2010. 
  9. ^ a b "Dena Kaplan Flight Of The Conchords". Retrieved 10 July 2010. 
  10. ^ a b "Dance Academy on ABC3". Australian Broadcasting Corporation via Throng. 2010. Retrieved 9 July 2010. 
  11. ^ a b Goldberg, Lesley (25 February 2013). "'Brothers & Sisters' Alum Rachel Griffiths to Star in NBC Summer Series 'Camp'". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 22 August 2013. 
  12. ^ Dena Kaplan from NBC’s ‘Camp’ Talks to Us About Her Healthy Living Philosophy, Body Image, & Shares A Favorite Recipe
  13. ^ Our Ambassadors

External links[edit]