Newtown High School of the Performing Arts

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Newtown High School of the Performing Arts
Newtown School of the Arts.JPG
St George's Hall
Newtown[1], New South Wales
Type Public (selective performing arts)
Motto Equality, creativity, excellence
Established 1990 (1990)
Principal Stephen Gray and Peter Shields[2]
Grades 7–12
Enrollment approx 1000
Blue and red
Formerly Newtown Boys High School and Petersham Girls High School

Newtown High School of the Performing Arts (NHSPA) is a state government school located in the suburb of Newtown in Sydney, New South Wales, Australia. It is one of the very few performing arts and visual arts schools in Australia. All the students that attend the school are required to study Drama, Music, Dance and Visual Arts as part of the school’s curriculum for the first two years of secondary school. The school participates in a few concerts both on and off school grounds in all types of performing and visual arts as well as video, technical, costume and design.

The school is run by the New South Wales Department of Education and Training.


The school was founded in 1990 as the first state selective high school for performing arts in New South Wales. NHSPA was formed from the merger of the nearby Petersham Girls High School and Newtown Boys' High School on the latter's King Street site. Newtown's foundation principal was Robin Amm, formerly the principal at Petersham Girls.

The school remains open and accessible to the local population, however a larger percentage of prospective students from outside the local acceptance boundaries can audition to obtain a place at the school.[3]


The campus is located on King Street, Newtown and bounded by Newman and Whitehorse Streets. The campus has a large paved playground and a grass oval. The various faculties within the school are located in different areas ranging from A to G Blocks and the gymnasium located near the school oval. The school also has an operational theatre, known as the Studio Theatre, that it uses for its biannual Showcase concerts and other productions. The school also manages the adjacent St Georges Hall which is used for larger productions and school activities.

Cafe next to one entrance to the school


The student body consists of 1,061. Approximately 1/2 of the student body is recruited through a short audition process. 30 pupils are in the music class, 30 in drama and 30 in dance per year, although families living within the catchment area are prioritised to send their children there. Students can audition to gain entry to the school for Years 7 and 11.

Student leadership[edit]

Prefect Body[edit]

The Prefecture at NHSPA consists of Year 12 students who are elected by both their fellow students and teachers. Its primary role is act as role models for other students and represent the school at any public event.

Student Representative Council[edit]

Newtown High School of the Performing Arts has an elected Student Representative Council (SRC) composed of two students from each grade. Members are elected for a one-year term by the students. The SRC underwent significant reform in 2004 when the students drafted and adopted a formal constitution, and the council changed from a volunteer institution to its current elected structure. The SRC's primary objectives are to provide input on policy that affects students and to run charity fundraisers.


NHSPA offers these subjects for the HSC:[4]

Extracurricular activities[edit]

The most notable extracurricular activities available to the students of the high school are the ensembles and companies in the Music, Drama and Dance departments. These are:[5]

Notable alumni[edit]


  1. ^ "School Contacts". 
  2. ^ "Staff". 
  3. ^ Oliver, Mr A. "Auditions (Closed)". 
  4. ^ Oliver, Mr A. "Curriculum 2016". 
  5. ^ Oliver, Mr A. "Co-Curricula Activities". 

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 33°53′58″S 151°10′43″E / 33.89948°S 151.17851°E / -33.89948; 151.17851