Issue 2 - 4 March 2013 enews home

Horse lecturer gallops off to the circus


By Patrick Nelson


VET lecturer Kerrie Cokley ... focusing on the wellbeing of horses in the Cavalia circus

A lecturer from Charles Darwin University’s Katherine rural campus is about to begin work under the big top of a glamorous travelling animal circus.

Horse instructor Kerrie Cokley has taken industry leave in order to accept an offer with Cavalia, a grand-scale equestrian and performing arts production that is about to begin a five-month tour of Australia.

“I’ll be working with the stable management team and as a veterinarian technician, fully focusing on the care and wellbeing of the horses,” Ms Cokley said.

“It’s a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. Not only will it allow me to keep my industry skills up to date but I’m working with 50 of the most magnificent horses in the world.”

Cavalia, which integrates acrobatics, dance, aerial stunts, live music and equestrian arts, features 36 acrobats and performers and 14 different breeds of horse.

“It’s all very magical and inspiring and explores the relationship between humans and horses," she said.

Ms Cokley is well versed in preparing animals for large-scale productions, having managed horses, camels and sheep for the “Outback Spectacular” show on the Gold Coast for three years.

She had also worked on Territory cattle stations before joining CDU’s Primary Industries team in 2010 as lecturer, work place assessor and apprentice coordinator.