Tag Archives | Heathcote

Dorothy Heathcote’s life celebration – Pam Bowell’s address

This week the celebration of Dorothy Heathcote’s life was held in Spondon, Derbyshire, UK. It was great that our own Sarah Marino was able to attend, to represent Drama NZ and Mantle of the Expert practitioners from this part of the world.

Pamela Bowell gave a moving address at the ceremony and she has given permission for this to be reproduced here. It’s a lovely snapshot of what it was like to work alongside DH, and the legacy she has left behind.




Heathcote life celebration and memorial website

This week we received a message from the Heathcote family with information about Dorothy’s Life Celebration, which is to be held on 11th December at St. Werburgh’s Church, Church Street, Spondon, DERBY DE21 7LL in the UK. The celebration will be followed by a party.
If there is anyone from NZ who is able to attend this celebration that would be great – you would be representing many of us who would like to be there. You are asked to  RSVP to mariannekevin@yahoo.co.uk (or by post, but not telephone) so numbers attending can be catered for. In lieu of flowers, or for those unable to attend, you might like to consider a charitable donation to the Dorothy Heathcote Drama Award at www.justgiving.com/dorothyheathcote This website will accept donations from the UK and abroad.
In advance of the Life Celebration, Marianne is very keen for many people who have photographs and written memories of Dorothy to mail hard copies to her,  ideally with photographs labelled on the back with names/approximate dates.
Marianne says “This is something that will be very special to us as a family and we would like to treasure it and pass it on to Anna and future generations.”
Marianne also invites us all to visit www.dorothyheathcote.org which has just been launched as the only official website endorsed by the family and dedicated to the life and work of Dorothy, to be used as the international meeting place where all memories of Dorothy and her work can be shared, and her practice carried forward. There is a special ‘affected by DH’ page where you can add your name to a list of all those who knew or were touched by Dorothy. For those who haven’t already read it, Dorothy’s official obituary and photograph are also on this website.

A mighty tree has fallen – passing of Dorothy Heathcote

Kua hinga he totara i te wao nui a Tane –
“A mighty totora has fallen in the forest of Tane”


Many people will have already heard the sad news that the progenitor of Mantle of the Expert, Prof. Dorothy Heathcote passed away over the weekend. Dorothy’s contribution to drama education was of course immeasurable. We are all very fortunate to have lived and learned in her shadow. I know that Dorothy was very proud of the work that was happening in Mantle of the Expert in New Zealand and always took a keen interest in developments here.

Her passing serves as a reminder to keep planting the seeds and growing our own forest of Totora here in Aotearoa. I have been reflecting on how many people in NZ must have been touched by the power of her work. She visited here a number of times during the 70s and 80s and inspired a whole generation of teachers and policy makers. She was with us again via live link at the Weaving Our Stories conference in 2009 and the stunning address she gave on that day seems to take on extra import in light of her passing.

Dorothy’s amazing life story is captured beautifully in the attached obituary which was supplied by her family. Your comments are invited (either here, or on the Drama NZ website) and will be relayed to the Heathcote family.

Dorothy Heathcote Obituary



Dorothy Heathcote awarded MBE

Exciting news today – the much admired inventor of the MOTE system, Dorothy Heathcote, has had her contributions to education honoured with the awarding of an MBE. Here’s what the British drama society said about Heathcote’s contribution to education and children’s lives – hear hear from here!

During a career spanning more than 60 years, her seminal work in the field of drama education has had a global impact on the way in which drama, theatre and the curriculum are perceived. The practice of the many thousands of teachers who have been touched by Dorothy’s ways of working has be profoundly changed and the learning experiences of many thousands of children have been immeasurably enhanced.

I will be sending congratulations to Dorothy on behalf of NZ MOTE practitioners. If you would like to include a personal message, either email me  or post a comment to this post.