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Dance Australia

Dance Australia June-July 2019

Dance Australia is the most respected dance journal in the country. The articles and reviews are written by the cream of Australia’s dance journalists. The beautiful photographs and glossy design make the magazine a work of art in itself –a keepsake for anyone who loves dance.

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6 Issues

in this issue

1 min
vale jonathan taylor

BARELY had Dame Margaret Scott, AC, DBE, been laid to rest earlier this year when another VIP of the dance world died. Jonathan Taylor had no medals, but he deserved them as much as did Dame Margaret. He was the artistic director of Australian Dance Theatre from 1976 to 1985 and dean of dance at the Victorian College of the Arts from 1988 to 1997. Although he was about 20 years younger than Dame Margaret, they shared a common heritage. Both were dancers with Ballet Rambert, a company whose bold and adventurous spirit reached into Australia through these two pioneers. As Michelle Potter writes in her obituary (p.13), Taylor and his family of wife and three children uprooted their lives in England to come to Adelaide and accept an invitation to…

1 min
bangarra to tour to every capital

2019 is Bangarra Dance Theatre’s 30th anniversary. The company is celebrating with a triple bill, entitled “Bangarra: 30 years of sixty five thousand”, referring to the 65,000 years of Indigenous culture and storytelling from which the company draws inspiration. The tour schedule is Bangarra’s most ambitious to date, and takes in every A ustralian capital city. In recognition of the talent that has come through the company, Frances Rings’s 2004 work, Unaipon (Clan), will be restaged. Unaipon celebrates the life of David Unaipon (1872-1967), whose journey took him from the shores of Lake Alexandrina in the Ngarrindjeri nation to his place on the Australian 50 dollar note. In Unaipon, Rings presents a rich dance portrait of the man who made the connection between aerodynamics and the flight pattern of the boomerang, and…

1 min
on light and sound

INDEPENDENT choreographer Rachel Arianne Ogle is presenting consecutive seasons in Perth this June, with a remount of her 2014 work precipice, followed by its sequel i have loved the stars too fondly to be fearful of the night, which had its debut at Melbourne’s Dance Massive in March of this year. Inspired by tectonic shifts, gravitational torsion and states of emotional rupture, precipice sees a dance of abandon and precarious control unfold within an installation of light designed by Benjamin Cisterne and sound by Luke Smiles. This season of precipice will be performed by Tyrone Robinson, Niharika Senapati, Yilin Kong and Imanuel Dado and will run from May 9 to June 1 at the State Theatre Centre of WA. (www.ptt.wa.gov.au) Bringing together the same creative team as precipice, i have loved the…

2 min
balanchine workshops

THIS July, International Ballet Workshops will be offering students in Australia and New Zealand a rare opportunity to learn the Balanchine Style® and Technique® . International guest teacher Elizabeth Walker will be travelling from New York to join the workshops. Walker spent 19 years with New York City Ballet, during which time she performed multiple principal roles by George Balanchine and Peter Martins, and was a featured dancer/demonstrator in the video series “Balanchine Essays”, a visual catalogue of Balanchine’s teaching points and style. She has taught for many years, including for six years on the faculty at the School of American Ballet. “I’m so excited to be teaching Balanchine’s style in Australia!,” she says. “My hope is that the students’ experience with Balanchine will open their dance world to more depth of…

1 min
a new take on swan lake

CONTEMPORARY ballet company Les Ballets de Monte-Carlo will visit Melbourne this winter, with LAC, a modern take on Swan Lake. Choreographed by the company’s director, Jean-Christophe Maillot, LAC is an updated version of the classic tale. Set to the original Tchaikovsky score, Maillot’s ballet is a story of love triangles. The Prince’s childhood sweetheart, the White Swan, is kidnapped by Her Majesty the Night. Haunted by that lost love, the grown-up prince is unable to choose from the prospective brides presented to him. When Her Majesty the Night attempts to match him with her own daughter, the Black Swan, chaos and tragedy ensues. Maillot’s choreography combines neo-classical lines with a modern sensibility to give this fairy tale a sharp edge. Presented as part of The Australian Ballet’s 2019 season, LAC runs from June…

1 min
somatic awareness in dance training

Somatic awareness (bodily forms of knowledge) is of central importance to dance training at a tertiary level, based on an anatomical and experiential understanding of a student’s body and how they perform movement. Somatics is developed from sensory perception (noticing and being aware of the internal processes and initiations of movement) and provides students with a greater understanding of the creative possibilities of movement. Some dance training methods encourage increased use of muscular tension to demonstrate technical skill. However, research shows a decrease in sensitivity to somatic perception the more muscular tension a dancer uses. Therefore, dancers may inadvertently train themselves to become less sensitive to their bodily perception through the use of excessive tension. This issue is particularly important for dance training that promotes competition, which may not allow for somatic-based…