Stage Challenge® involves dancers, actors, performers, lighting liaisons, teachers, set and design crew and make-up teams.

Genevieve Mora, a 21-year-old New Zealander who’s now based in Los Angeles talks to TEARAWAY about participating in Stage Challenge with her former school, Epsom Girls’ Grammar – and why she thinks participating in the longest-running youth event in NZ is so important.

We also chat to Genevieve about how being involved in performing arts has helped to get her to where she is now – studying at the prestigious Lee Strasberg Theatre & Film Institute in Los Angeles.


Have you always wanted to pursue a career in the entertainment industry?

Looking back at home videos from when I was younger (four years old) it’s interesting to see how I behaved in front of the camera. I would often ask mum to film me doing weather reports and would always end the home videos with “Thanks for watching TV2”. So I guess that’s a ‘yes’.

Acting has always been something I have been interested in. During my high school years I took drama classes and in my last two years at high school I flew out to LA for three weeks to attend an acting summer camp. I think I was about 16 when I decided that I didn’t want acting to just be a hobby of mine, I wanted it to be a career. Life is short and I think it’s so important to do something you truly love and acting makes me so happy. I’m at my happiest when I’m in front of the camera.


What was your favourite highlight of participating in Stage Challenge?

The highlight of Stage Challenge would have to have been the final performance at ASB Theatre. The amount of work that goes into Stage Challenge is huge and to see it all finally come together was amazing.


Describe your overall Stage Challenge experience.

I was part of Stage Challenge in my earlier years of high school. I am not very talented when it comes to dancing but I had seen Stage Challenge and heard so many great things about it that I KNEW I had to get involved in any way possible. I was in the Epsom Girls’ Grammar School’s set crew and had an absolute blast. Bringing someone’s set idea to life was a very rewarding experience.


Why do you think Stage Challenge is an important event for students to be part of?

Stage Challenge brings people together. I went to a huge high school and through Stage Challenge I got to meet and make friendships with people I otherwise may not have crossed paths with. It is an opportunity for people to show their talents and be part of a magical performance.

Stage Challenge is all about working together as a team and I think that is an important skill for anyone to have. It gives students the opportunity to plan, create and bring to life a performance. It takes a lot of hard work and focus, but the reward of knowing that you helped put an incredible show together is very exciting!


Do you have any advice for future Stage Challenge participants?

My advice would be to get as involved in the whole process as possible. The friendships you make, the skills you learn and the challenges of putting together a student-run performance is life changing.


Don’t miss the 2016 Stage Challenge touring this May and June! To find more information and for this year’s show dates, head along to