Rugby museum enters international video dance-off contest



The New Zealand Rugby Museum’s entry into the international Museum Dance-Off Competition.

It might be lo-fi and the star may be a bobble-head Richie McCaw, but a video entered into the International Museum Dance-Off Competition by the New Zealand Rugby Museum is high-fun. 

The international video competition features museum staff dancing their way onto the global stage against regions as far-flung as Antarctica. The best dance video wins by popular vote and the polls are open between 12am and 11:59pm on Tuesday. 

It was museum researcher Bettina Anderson’s idea. She saw it as a chance to put the little museum, mostly run by volunteers on the map.

“There are only five entries from New Zealand out of the 50 or so global ones and we’d love for rugby to take the Oceania title.”

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Anderson was the one behind the camera, Samsung Galaxy A3 phone, and “roped in” were the museum’s features director Stephen Berg, museum volunteer Marj Fox and contract preparator Catherine Hehir.

The New Zealand Rugby Museum's features director Stephen Berg starred in a video for the Museum Dance-Off competition, ...


The New Zealand Rugby Museum’s features director Stephen Berg starred in a video for the Museum Dance-Off competition, alongside a plastic Richie McCaw, volunteer Marj Fox and staff member Catherine Hehir.

They starred alongside a plastic Richie McCaw and Berg said Anderson used some ingenious technology.

“She made a sort of cradle out of her son’s Lego for the phone and Richie, and filmed it that way.”

​A ruler, rubber bands and an app called Clayframes to do the stop motion were also used and Hehir’s son was another “ring in” for the editing.

The whole process only took a few hours with minimum choreography. Berg said he wasn’t much of a dancer so figured “giving it some gusto” was the way to go.

“Marj and Catherine were great and Marj insisted on wearing Otago colours. I really just jumped around and made a fool of myself. It would be pretty neat if our little museum could get somewhere though, against all the others all over the world and some of the videos are pretty sophisticated.”

The Museum Dance-Off Competition has been running for five years with this being the last one. Berg said for the staff at the New Zealand Rugby Museum it was also a chance to show people another side to them.

“People that work in museums, we get this reputation – a bit like librarians – that we are all quiet, shy and timid people that like spending their time in dusty, dark rooms. But we aren’t really.”

To vote in the New Zealand round of the competition, visit  








 – Stuff

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