- Transforming the form: changing structures and their effects
- The subtleties and nuances of innovation.
- Discourse: How is dance written about, spoken about and communicated?
A partnership between the Australia Council for the Arts and Ausdance National, the NDF is a biennial gathering for the Australian professional contemporary dance sector. It fosters the artistic development of dance in Australia by providing a platform for discussion between Australian choreographers, dancers, independent artists, artistic directors, educators, researchers and dance producers.
Keynote #2 Jerril Rechter interviewed by Fiona Winning
Date: 20 March 2015
Contemporary dance happens here: deploying dance in regional settings
Date: 20 March 2015
Chair: Annette Carmichael.
Speakers: Jacob Boehme, Lesley Graham, Britt Guy, Julian Louis
This panel features dynamic and diverse representation from some of Australia’s leading voices within the regional arts sector. They will engage you in a debate on notions of excellence, community engagement and being objectified as ‘regional'.
The academic artist: oxymoron or creative synergy?
Date: 20 March 2015
Chair: Cheryl Stock
Speakers: Shaun McLeod, Julie-Anne Long, Jo Pollitt
There are ongoing tensions between academics who employ artistic practice as part of their skills set versus artists who enter the academy through a higher degree or taking up a university job opportunity. This panel will address both the pitfalls and opportunities when academic research interacts with creative practice. How one area supports and engages the other is a multifaceted and complex endeavour.
Dance Massive artists panel
Date: 20 March 2015
Chair: Emily Sexton
Speakers: Martin del Amo, Anouk van Dijk, Clare Watson, Zaimon Vilmanis, Katrina Lazaroff
Dance Massive Artists Panel A panel of diverse artists all presenting a varied spectrum of completed and, in-progress works as part of Dance Massive 2015, this discussion will invite conversation regarding current trends in Australian choreographic practice and the significance of presenting work within a Festival context.
Dance criticism, writing and discourse
Date: 20 March 2015
Chair: Ashley Dyer
Speakers: Matthew Day, Jordan Beth Vincent, Jana Perkovic, Vicki van Hout
'The perfect dance critic does not exist.' Miguel Gutierrez.
The role of the critic is no longer merely about helping an audience discriminate between 'better' and 'worse'. This panel discussion unpacks the changing value of discourse and critical writing. It engages thoughtful artists and dance writers who ask the sometimes fraught questions: What is the role of the critic? For who or what are they writing? Can anyone be a critic? What role can writing and discourse play in influencing the development of dance practice? And how does it affect dance as a form?
Crossing borders: International collaboration
Date: 20 March 2015
Chair: Jeff Khan
Speakers: Tim Darbyshire, Thomas E. S. Kelly, Pirjetta Mulari (Dance Info Finland), Paul Selwyn Norton, Ade Suharto
This discussion explores Australia-international exchange from the perspective of artists, curators, and organisations. What are the benefits of international exchange and how can it develop artists' practices? What are some best-case examples of genuine exchange between practitioners from diverse backgrounds and perspectives? Where, how and why do artists want to be working in this context?
From black box to white box
Date: 20 March 2015
Chair: Hannah Mathews
Speakers: Phillip Adams, Atlanta Eke, Alison Currie, Latai Taumoepeau
This panel seeks to map out the historical lineage and contemporary concerns of creating and presenting choreographic works within gallery spaces. By reflecting on past examples and considering the current trend towards using the white cube as a context for dance, the session will address the interests and concerns of choreographers who cross dance with visual arts practice.
Date: 21 March 2015
Chair: Andrew Morrish
Speakers: Michelle Ryan, Kate Sulan, Janice Florence, Philip Channells
Some of Australia’s leading dance practitioners, who work in dance and physical performance with or alongside artists with disability, discuss process, performance, access, aesthetics and disability politics.
NAISDA's 2015 auditions for the 2016 intake are at NAISDA Dance College 21–25 September 2015.
Audition is by application and invitation only. Audition applications close Friday 7 August 2015.
For more information and to apply for a NAISDA audition, visit the NAISDA website and download the Audition Pack.
UNESCO International Arts Education Week is an arts education advocacy event that draws attention to the role arts education plays in a global agenda of peace and cultural understanding.
This year's theme is arts education for sustainable development.
We support arts education for sustainable development as the theme for International Arts Education Week because we believe that arts education promotes personal and social well-being. Arts education develops students’ self-esteem, social interactions and confidence.
The long list of nominations is being shortlisted by the Australian Dance Awards selection panel.
The shortlist will be announced in July, with winners announced at the 2015 Australian Dance Awards in Adelaide on Saturday 12 September.
- What: One Body, One Career—Anouk van Dijk’s Countertechnique method intensive
- When: 29 June – 10 July 2015.
- Where: Melbourne, Australia.
The intensive is for professional dancers and advanced students interested in pursuing a long, healthy and successful career in dance.
It is curated and taught by Chunky Move Artistic Director, Anouk van Dijk, in conjunction with Countertechnique Master Teacher Nina Wollny and American Alexander Technique expert Tom Koch.
First-time participants will gain an intensive introduction to the distinct elements and methodology that form Countertechnique, Anouk van Dijk’s movement system and training method. Returning participants have the opportunity to deepen and expand their understanding. Through theory, physical practice, discourse and workshops, participants will gain a set of practical tools that they will be able to draw from and apply in their daily dance practice.
16 – 18 October 2015
World Dance Alliance Singapore is proud to present the 2015 Annual General Meeting of World Dance Alliance Asia-Pacific alongside Asia-Pacific Dance Bridge 2015: Connectivity Through Dance.
Asia-Pacific Dance Bridge 2015: Connectivity through Dance aims to cultivate dance connectivity within Singapore’s own dance community as well as forge alliances between dancers, academics, educators and administrators throughout the Asia-Pacific region and beyond. The conference will consist of several events: Symposium, Choreolab, Community Showcase, Small Company and Independent Artist Showcase, Singapore Tertiary Showcase and Workshops.
These events will be presented in partnership with Singapore’s arts industry organisations located in Singapore’s arts & culture district including Esplanade Theatres on the Bay (Esplanade), Lasalle College of the Arts (Lasalle), Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts (NAFA), National Library Building (NLB), and School of the Arts (SOTA).
The World Dance Alliance Asia-Pacific (WDAAP) Annual General Meeting, Network Meetings, Young Scholars Meeting as well as the World Dance Alliance Global Executive Meeting will also be hosted at NAFA.
Call for Symposium: Closed
Call for Choreolab:
15 April 2015 Extended to 30 April 2015
Call for Community Showcase:
15 April 2015 Extended to 30 April 2015
Call for Small Company & Independent Artist Showcase:
15 April 2015 Extended to 30 April 2015
Call for Workshops:
15 April 2015 Extended to 30 April 2015
For further details of the event please visit the WDAS2015 website.
WDA members can register here now.
American Dance Festival (ADF) 2015 will take place 11 June – 25 July in Durham, USA.
Heralded as “One of the nation’s most important institutions” by the New York Times and as “The world’s greatest dance festival” by the New York Post, the ADF has a long record of creative achievement and is indivisible from the history of modern dance.
Since 1934, ADF has remained committed to serving the needs of dance, dancers, choreographers, and professionals in dance-related fields. Remaining true to the goals of its founding artists, ADF’s programs are developed based on its mission:
- to encourage and support the creation and presentation of new modern dance work by both established and emerging choreographers,
- to preserve our modern dance heritage through continued presentation of classic works as well as through archival efforts,
- to build wider national and international audiences for modern dance,
- to enhance public understanding and appreciation of the art form and its cultural and historical significance,
- to provide a sound scientific and aesthetic base for professional education and training of young dancers,
- and to maintain a forum for integrating and disseminating information on dance education.
Go to the ADF website to find out more.
The Tanja Liedtke Foundation is is pleased to announce South Australian dancer and choreographer Gabrielle Nankivell as the winner of the 2015 Tanja Liedtke Fellowship. Congratulations to Gabrielle!
Gabrielle was also the inaugural recipient of the Keith Bain Choreographic Travel Fellowship, presented at the 2014 Australian Dance Awards last November.
Jerril Rechter is the CEO of VicHealth. She has extensive experience in leadership across the areas of government and not-for-profit sectors.
Jerril is a World Health Organization Advisor, a board member of the International Network of Health Promotion Foundations, a member of Victoria’s Justice Health Ministerial Advisory Council and a member of the Liquor Control Advisory Council.
She regularly presents at state, national and international conferences and events to share her experiences in health promotion, leadership, the arts, and the potential of innovations to improve health and wellbeing for everyone.
She has served on various state and national boards and committees, including VicHealth's, as Board Member from 2004 to 2010. Her Ministerial appointments have included the Victorian Eating Disorders Taskforce, Australia Day Committee Victoria, Australia Council for the Arts Deputy Chair Dance Board, Arts Tasmania Board, Brand Tasmania Board and the Community Leaders Group Tasmania.
Jerril is a recipient of a Centenary Medal, Tasmania Day Award, and Fellowships from the Winston Churchill Memorial Trust, Australia Council, Harvard Club of Australia, the Australian Davos Forum-Future Summit, and Williamson Community Leadership Program (Leadership Victoria).
Jerril holds a Master of Business Leadership from RMIT University. She has held executive positions at Leadership Victoria, Melbourne International Festival of the Arts, Footscray Community Arts Centre, and founded Stompin Youth Dance Company.
The National Forum is a partnership between the Australia Council for the Arts and Ausdance National.
National Dance Forum partners the Australia Council for the Arts and Ausdance National are thrilled to announce acclaimed New Zealand-based artist Lemi Ponifasio as the first keynote artist-in-conversation for NDF2015.
Lemi is a leading voice in contemporary dance and theatre making internationally, based in the Asia-Pacific, performing and collaborating worldwide. He will be in conversation with NDF2015 co-facilitator Fiona Winning on the afternoon of Thursday 19 March.
The second keynote and the full list of speakers will be unveiled in early February.
Theatre artist Lemi Ponifasio founded the MAU in Auckland in 1995, a collaboration of communities and artists from all over the world.
MAU is a Samoan word that means a declaration to the truth of a matter or revolution as an effort to transform.
In his artistic universe, Ponifasio orients the modern individual towards other dimensions of consciousness by way of the decelerated rhythm of his strict aesthetic, making use of striking images, movement and dynamic interplay of light and darkness. A pioneer at the international frontier of dance and theatre art, his theatre vision transcends the barriers between genres and cultures and transmits the universal power of art. Lemi Ponifasio presents his productions in such places as the Avignon Festival, BAM, Ruhrtriennale, Edinburgh International Festival, Theatre de la Ville Paris, London's Southbank, Holland Festival, Luminato Festival, Vienna Festival and Berliner Festspiele.
I AM, Ponifasio’s most recent work, premiered at the Avignon Festival 2014 followed by seasons at the Edinburgh International Festival, the Ruhrtriennale, Germany, and I AM MAPUCHE for Festival Santiago a Mil, Chile. His other creations include Birds With Skymirrors responding to the disappearing Pacific Islands, homelands to most of his dancers and devastated by climate change; Tempest: Without A Body, concerning our collective paralysis in the face of truth, symbolized by increased and unlawful use of state power post 9/11; Le Savali: Berlin confronting the imperial City of Berlin with its own communities, the young generation of immigrant families in search of belonging and constrained by threat of deportation; The Crimson House probing the nature of power and subjectivity in our panoptic state – a world that sees all and no longer forgets; and Stones In Her Mouth, a work with Maori women as transmitters of a life force through oratory, ancient chants, choral-work and dance. In 2012 Ponifasio staged the epic opera Prometheus by Carl Orff for the Ruhrtriennale.
Watch some of Lemi's work with MAU
Stones in her mouth (2014)
Birds with sky mirrors
Tempest: without a body
The Crimson House
When: 16–18 October 2015
Where: Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts (NAFA), Singapore
World Dance Alliance Singapore is proud to present the 2015 Annual General Meeting, Network Meetings and Young Scholars Meeting of World Dance Alliance Asia-Pacific as well as the Global Executive Meeting alongside the conference Asia-Pacific Dance Bridge 2015: Connectivity through Dance. Coinciding with the da:ns festival organised by the Esplanade, Singapore, conference events at venues located in Singapore’s arts and culture district are outlined below.
The conference aims to cultivate dance connectivity within Singapore’s own dance community as well as forge alliances between dancers, academics, educators and administrators throughout the Asia-Pacific region and beyond.
The conference will include scholarly papers, performative presentations and Pecha Kucha style presentations. Other conference events include showcases, a choreolab, masterclasses and workshops.
Asia-Pacific Dance Bridge 2015: Connectivity through Dance
Conference papers: call for abstracts
We now invite abstracts for presentations addressing the conference theme for the following categories by 2 March 2015. You will be notified of acceptance by 1 April 2015.
All modes of presentation require a 250-word abstract and a 100-word biography, plus up to four keywords to identify themes relevant to your topic. The conference will also include lunchtime conversations with invited speakers.
Submit an abstract of 250 words maximum. These will be double-blind refereed by an international review committee as per academic research conventions and published in the conference proceedings.
This format is designed to privilege the voice of practitioners through showing digital footage of a choreographic work or a community/teaching/video project they have undertaken. Proposals should comprise a 250-word concept statement of the practice/project, together with a 10-minute maximum online (Vimeo/YouTube) excerpt of recent work. Promotional footage will not be considered.
Pecha Kucha style presentations
(for students in Honours year and above)
Pecha Kucha is a presentation format in which 20 slides are timed to be shown each for 20 seconds (7 minutes total). Research students are encouraged to present in this format. Initial submissions are in the form of a 250-word abstract summarising the topic, methodology and summary of the research to date, with an extra page of no more than 7 contextual/bibliographic references in APA style. If selected, more detailed instructions on the format will be provided.
Associated performance events
There will be an opportunity for members to participate in the following events. Chapter Heads and members will be advised about application processes by 1 March.
- The Small Company/Independent Artist Showcase, chaired by Susan Yeung, will be presented at the Recital Studio, Esplanade. The focus will be on cutting-edge contemporary dance works by choreographers from the Asia-Pacific region. The collection of works speaks of a new generation of dance-making that is uniquely contemporary Asian.
- The Singapore Tertiary Showcase will feature Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts (coordinated by Gillian Tan) and Lasalle College of the Arts (coordinated by Susan Yeung). Both institutions will present their own dance works as well as a collaborative dance work in the Next Generation platform of Esplanade’s da:ns festival.
- The Community Showcase, chaired by Peter Gn, will be presented at the Plaza @ National Library. It aims to celebrate the diversity of dance through enjoyable dance performances of amateur groups from the Asia-Pacific region.
Melissa Quek will chair the Choreolab in consultation with the Creation & Presentation Network Chair, Nanette Hassall. Selected emerging choreographers from the Asia-Pacific region will be in an intensive residence prior to the conference and will present works-in-progress during the conference.
Masterclasses and workshops
Masterclasses will include traditional and contemporary dance forms with international artists and choreographers from the Asia-Pacific region. Workshops addressing one or more of the following WDA network areas may also be presented: Research & Documentation, Creation & Presentation, Education & Training, Support & Development.
SMUDGE: an exciting new collaboration between Phillip Adams BalletLab and artist Brook Andrew.
Phillip Adams BalletLab is seeking professional and experimental industry individuals from the wider sector of performing arts, interdisciplinary and visual arts practitioners that include researchers, architects, musicians, designers, etc. The project will require a level of physical/movement practice and understanding of contemporary performance and/or creative collaborations, depending on the discipline of the applicant, (e.g. an architect may be utilised to perform physically and create ‘spaces’ through objects placed in the space for performers).
SMUDGE 2015 creative development project dates: 11–29 May (three weeks full time Monday to Friday)
Jo Dyer, Chair of the Board of Force Majeure has announced the appointment of Danielle Micich as the incoming Artistic Director/CEO for the company, replacing founding Director Kate Champion. Jo said:
The Board of Directors is delighted that Danielle has accepted the role of Artistic Director of Force Majeure. Danielle’s body of work demonstrates an immensely talented and rigorous artist who has thought passionately and deeply about dance theatre and the role it occupies in the Australian and international arts landscape. We can think of no-one better to build on the wonderful legacy being left by Kate Champion. We believe that under Danielle’s leadership, Force Majeure will continue to flourish in the unique space Kate has carved out for us, a genuine cross-artform blend of theatre and dance, dedicated to exploring ideas and ourselves.
Danielle is currently a core artist with Performing Lines WA and recently premiered her new work Overexposed at the State Theatre Centre of WA. She is a graduate of the Victorian College of the Arts and was Artistic Director of STEPS Youth Dance Company in Perth for four years. Her choreography for Barking Gecko’s Driving Into Walls was nominated for a 2012 Helpmann Award.
Watching Force Majeure over many years define its unique place in Australian theatre drew me towards making dance theatre myself. If anyone told me that the last ten years was preparation for something much bigger, I should have listened earlier. The many people and companies I have worked with along the way have shaped the artist I am today.
Working with Kate Champion was a defining moment. I knew then I would pursue my practice in dance theatre. It's a great honour to follow on from one of Australia’s finest Artistic Directors and continue her legacy. Seeing the bigger picture is one thing, but knowing how to contribute and lead is another. I am very excited about my role in the future of Force Majeure.
Danielle will join Executive Producer Bec Allen, the staff, Board and artists of Force Majeure in the position of Artistic Director/CEO in mid-2015.
Jo Dyer commented:
Kate had no involvement in the recruitment of her successor, so the Board was thrilled—and not a little relieved—that upon being advised of our choice for the role and Danielle’s subsequent acceptance of the job, Kate has thoroughly endorsed Danielle’s appointment.
Out-going Artistic Director/CEO Kate Champion:
After thirteen years building Force Majeure’s reputation as a dance theatre company that is artistically adventurous and thematically contemporary, I am delighted with the Board’s decision to appoint Danielle Micich as the new Artistic Director. Danielle is at a point in her career where her talent, passion and enthusiasm for the art form fits perfectly with the company’s creative legacy and vision for the future. This represents an exciting new stage in Force Majeure’s direction and one I wholeheartedly support.
Edith Cowan University is excited to announce that WAAPA has a new motion capture facility that will be used to prevent injuries to dancers as well as a teaching and performance tool for its elite dancers.
This facility is the only motion capture setup of its kind to incorporate the skills of a biomechanist directly into a university dance program in the interest of preventing dance injuries.
What makes motion capture at Mount Lawley unique is that we have access to a large cohort of talented dancers, in addition to scientific and artistic academics who are willing and able to use the lab in the investigation of the prevention of dance injuries.
—Dr Luke Hopper, Biomechanist and health in performing arts specialist, ECU
Read the extended articles
- Motion capture raises the barre for WAAPA dancers (ecu.edu.au)
- Technology helps WA Academy of Performing Arts dance students tap into better performances (abc.net.au)
Submit your ideas and proposals
We welcome your suggestions for topics, speakers or proposals for sessions including but not limited to:
- Five-minute presentations that may be thematically grouped with others to form the basis for longer sessions that will include both presentations and discussion
- 'Pecha kucha' style presentations (20 slides x 20 seconds)
- Studio-based sessions such as lecture demonstrations
Please note: proposals for showings and classes will not be eligible. NDF2015 is about fostering critical dialogue, and there will be other avenues for showings through Dance Massive managed by Ausdance Victoria. For more information visit Dance Massive.
Give us your feedback
We encourage any feedback you have about the proposed NDF2015 lines of focus:
- Transforming the form: changing structures and their effects
- The subtleties and nuances of innovation.
- Discourse: How is dance written about, spoken about and communicated?
Please use the NDF2015 proposals form and complete the feedback section.
The inaugural Keir Choreographic Award has been awarded to Atlanta Eke. The People's Choice Award went to Sydney artist Jane McKernan, as selected by audience members at the grand final at Carriageworks.
Four of the eight commissioned artists—Sarah Aiken, Matthew Day, Atlanta Eke, Jane McKernan—competed for the inaugural award at Carriageworks in Sydney in July.
The Housemate programs reflect Dancehouse's commitment to advancing innovative contemporary dance in Australia by instigating and nurturing rigorous discourse and encouraging wide-ranging, movement-based experimentation and innovative choreographic practices.
Both Performance and Research Housemate programs provide the artist with extensive time, generous financial support and a thoroughly mentored environment. The Housemate program is one of the very few fully paid artist-in-residence programs in the world. Artists are given between 8 and 14 weeks of free studio space, a salary package (or pro rata), and administrative, mentoring and production support. Housemates are selected by a peer advisory panel from a national call for applicants.
The Dance Movement Therapy Association of Australasia and the Hanny Exiner Memorial Foundation are pleased to collaborate in presenting the fourth dance movement therapy conference in Melbourne, Australia.
The conference will explore how dance movement therapy and other creative arts therapies can function as single and multi-modal approaches to health and healing; and how dance movement therapists can make valued contributions to multi-disciplinary teams.
Dance movement therapy conference: 12–14 July 2015, Melbourne
Pre and post conference workshops and activities: 9–14 July.
Theme: ‘Transform: from inception to innovation in arts education’
We invite you to share your research evidence, innovations and best practices in arts education globally.
Participation in this summit is by invitation only. If you are successful you will be part of approximately 90 presentations from quality arts educators across the globe in dance, drama, media arts, music, visual arts and cross-arts education.
Abstracts due 30 June 2014.
Summit date and location
26 – 28 November 2014
Griffith University, School of Education and Professional Studies, Mt Gravatt Campus, Brisbane
On 29 April every year, the international dance community celebrates International Dance Day.
We celebrate our art form's ability to cross all political, cultural and ethnic barriers and bring people together with a common language—dance.
The payment of professional dancers has been an important discussion over the last few days for independent performers in Australia. Following an initial call-out for performers to be part of a new video clip for Kylie Minogue filming on Friday 25 April, concerns were raised about remuneration for participating dancers.
Paul Malek of Dancechat and Jordan Beth Vincent, President of Ausdance Victoria have helped raised awareness of the ongoing problems associated with the valuing of performers in the commercial dance sector, noting this is not an isolated incident.
Ausdance believes that dancers are trained professionals who study and work hard to maintain their performance abilities. Like other artists, they deserve recognition and remuneration for the work they do. There may be times a dancer chooses to donate their skills and time, but we hope a professional video opportunity would come with professional remuneration.
The Media Entertainment Arts Alliance have been in negotiations with the production company since the filming was announced, resulting in award payments now being offered to performers under the Broadcast and Recorded Entertainment Award.
Ausdance and MEAA will continue discussions with dancers on how best to support dancers to access appropriate remuneration.
Ausdance Victoria is currently surveying free-lance and studio based teachers of dance on rates of pay and qualifications. Participate here before 30 June.
If you have any thoughts on this topic please leave them in the comments below.
You can read more about the issue here.
Contribute to the twitter discussion
Ausdance celebrates Australian dance makers at APAM 2014
In February 2014, Ausdance National and Ausdance Queensland hosted Talking dance—meet the makers, a networking event for the dance makers participating in the Australian Performing Arts Market (APAM).
The following slideshow, which was projected during the event, showcases the latest work of Australian dance companies and independent dance artists who were presenting work at APAM 2014.
The National Advocates for Arts Education (NAAE) made a submission to the review panel for the Australian Curriculum (500 KB PDF) strongly urging it to recommend that the Australian Curriculum: The Arts be implemented in its present form. The NAAE said that processes of refinement should be managed by classroom teachers piloting the curriculum, not a review panel.
National Advocates for Arts Education (NAAE), have expressed concern UNESCO has recently voted to downgrade its cultural program (including arts education), thus risking the program's eventual elimination. Writing to the Australian National Commission for UNESCO, NAAE have outlined concerns about the possible downgrading of UNESCO's cultural program, and requesting Australia's representatives prioritise this program when it votes again at its November meeting. NAAE also acknowledges the leadership role UNESCO has played as an active advocate for Arts Education internationally.
Toshi Kawaguchi, Secretary-General of the Australian National Commission for UNESCO has recently responsed:
Australia is not a member of the Executive Board. As such, we were not involved in the decision. The Australian National Commission for UNESCO intends to participate in the General Conference, however, and has registered National Advocates for Arts Education’s (NAAE) views. We appreciate your input as the peak national arts education association.
Australia has much to offer in the cultural and arts education sphere and places value in arts education, including working to elevate creativity and cultural expression nationally. As you note, education ministers endorsed the Australian Curriculum for the arts in July 2013 so that for the first time, all Australian students from Foundation to Year Ten will have access to an arts education that covers five art forms of drama, dance, media arts, music and visual arts. To the credit of cultural bodies such as NAAE and Drama Australia, the Australian Curriculum for the arts recognises the opportunities that the arts learning area offers students in relation to further developing their general capabilities such as literacy, personal and social capability, and intercultural understanding.
NAAE will continue to monitor the progress of the decision and the outcome of the General Conference.
There is so much we still have to learn about dance. Human bodies have been dancing for centuries and some of our training techniques have been passed on from generation to generation.
At Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance, Dr Emma Redding, head of dance science, is leading a growing group of researchers and students applying scientific methods to the dance training we do every day, seeking to gain knowledge about the body and the impact of dance.
Opening and closing with interactive visioning sessions, the program featured a full morning 'Open Space' session on the Sunday tapping the pulse of the forum, and through it that of the dance sector in Australia.
Keynote artists-in-conversation were Dalisa Pigram, co-Artistic Director of Marrugeku, with David Pledger, and Artistic Director of Australian Dance Theatre Garry Stewart with Anne Thompson.
At the recent meeting of the Tertiary Dance Council of Australia (TDCA), serious concerns were raised about the massive cuts to TAFE training in several eastern States.
In this article for Artshub, Tamara Winikoff, Executive Director of the National Association for the Visual Arts, also raises these concerns, and the broader issues of career pathways for artists. While Tamara focuses on the visual arts, much of her analysis could be applied to dance in the TAFE sector, especially with the imminent introduction of the new Australian Curriculum: The Arts.
We'll be making our concerns known to the Victorian, New South Wales, South Australian and Queensland governments about their proposals to so drastically cut TAFE funding. We suggest you read Tamara's article and respond to your own governments about the future of arts training in your State.
The latest Australia Council Snapshot of Major Performing Arts Company Key Trends shows that Australia’s major performing arts companies are robust, stable and have continued to expand their city audiences in line with population growth. They have also extended their reach and engagement in regional and remote communities.
The 2012 Australian Dance Awards were presented in spectacular fashion at the beautiful new Heath Ledger Theatre in the State Theatre Centre of Western Australia on 1 September.
Thank you for a great weekend. The National Dance Research Forum was stimulating, energising and so well organised with great food and venues. (Dr Cheryl Stock)
Last weekend we had the pleasure of partnering with the Tertiary Dance Council of Australia to welcome 35 Australian and five international dance researchers to the first national dance research forum held for many years.
The forum provided a unique opportunity for everyone to hear some high-profile speakers, share their own research, join small discussion groups and make plans with potential collaborators.
The National Library of Australia has integrated the Australia Dancing service into the national discovery service Trove.
Trove is an exciting destination for dance researchers and expands the potential of finding new and rare materials in many diverse collections. Trove takes you to resources in libraries, archives, performing arts collections, galleries; to biographical databases and online collections including pictures, digitised newspapers and finding aids. Trove also incorporates the National Library's dance resources, which continue to grow each year.
Managing Arts in Community Settings (MMM796) addresses the knowledge and skills needed to engage diverse communities in arts projects and manage community based arts initiatives.
A range of community-based arts programs are examined and the characteristics of community creative processes are identified and analysed. Find out more on the Deakin University website.
The Minister notes that 'the review makes 18 recommendations for reform of the Council and provides an opportunity to reflect on its success and to consider the major challenges ahead'.
We'll be commenting with our ArtsPeak colleagues, but we'd also like to hear from you. Please leave a comment when you've read the report.
We understand that the National Cultural Policy is now only weeks away, so we've written to Arts Minister Simon Crean again, this time in response to the media release from the Arts & Cultural Ministers' meeting on 30 March.
This was our last opportunity to comment prior to the NCP's release, so we've reproduced the text here, following correspondence with the Office for the Arts after my colleague, Tamara Winikoff, and I visited the department on behalf of ArtsPeak.
ArtsPeak has also written to the Minister, particularly emphasising the importance of the small to medium arts sector in Federal Budget considerations. The letter reads as follows:
Today I went with my ArtsPeak colleague, Tamara Winikoff, to visit the Office for the Arts in Canberra, where we continued the conversation about our work.
It was useful to share the ArtsPeak map that outlines the broad reach of arts service organisations, especially as we’d like to see it acknowleged as part of the bigger arts support picture in the National Cultural Policy .
We’re not artists, dance companies, or funding bodies, but do we have a body of work?
With our ArtsPeak partners, we've mapped some of things we do.
The Harold Mitchell Review of Private Sector Support for the Arts has just been released by the Minister for the Arts as part of the wider consultation about the new National Cultural Policy.
The Mitchell review recommends several ideas that might help attract new donors to the arts, noting that “The limited funds available to many arts organisations creates a situation where they cannot afford dedicated staff to drive a strategic approach to fund-raising”.
Mitchell also recommends the merging of the Australian Business Arts Foundation with Artsupport Australia “under the auspices of a new body with responsibility for all private sector support for the arts in Australia”.
Today is also your last opportunity to respond to the Australia Council review, another important part of the Cultural Policy consultation process.
Ever since we convened the 2005 Creating Pathways national Indigenous dance forum in Canberra, Lee Christofis—one of the keynote speakers, and now curator of dance at the National Library of Australia—has been keen to develop the NLA's Indigenous dance collection.
In the March 2012 edition of National Library News, Lee discusses some of the material now held in the collection and outlines the importance of its provenance.
Building the Indigenous contemporary dance collection makes fascinating reading for anyone interested in the development of Australian contemporary Indigenous dance.
ArtsPeak representatives met again with the ABC to lobby for more cultural content in ABC news and current affairs programs. General Manager Mark Scott had previously met with the group, and this time ArtsPeak met with Don Lang, the Head of News Programming, and Alan Sunderland, the Head of News Policy,
A process was agreed on to review arts content for news and current affairs programs, and on a process for arts representatives to contact appropriate reporters. The following strategies were suggested to ArtsPeak:
- Arts representatives should consider what the issues are and whether they are newsworthy.
- We should develop a central arts representatives contact register.
- We should focus on stories that utilise ABC research and archives.
We'll be working with our ArtsPeak colleagues to maximise this positive response from the ABC, and making sure dance is part of the story telling!
Arts curriculum writing for Foundation to Year 10 is well underway.
The draft rationale, aims and broad scope and sequence have already been reviewed by a state and territory national panel, and we joined other professional associations last week to review the drafts. We'd been invited to ask four teachers from across Australia to provide feedback, and Dr Katrina Rank, education and training manager for Ausdance Victoria, collated their feedback and led the discussion for dance.
We also represented the National Advocates for Arts Education (NAAE) in the teleconference, which was chaired by the general manager (curriculum) of the Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority (ACARA), Robert Randall.
We'll be calling for further dance commentary in the coming weeks as the drafts are developed by the writers, and ACARA will make the curriculum available for public comment in May. In the meantime, you can sign up for regular ACARA updates.
Following news last year that the ABC would axe several of its most successful arts programs, the national broadcaster has announced the appointment of a new head of TV arts, Katrina Sedgwick.
Formerly director of the Adelaide Film Festival, Katrina will commence work with the ABC in April.
In its 50th anniversary year, The Australian Ballet is celebrating a new rising star in its ranks, Chinese Australian dancer Chengwu Guo.
The ABC's 7.30 program profiles his work and interviews his mentor Li Cunxin, the teenage dancer Chen played in Mao's Last Dancer, the hugely successful film based on Li's autobiography.
Former balleriona Josephine Spaull, respected ballet teacher, Tanya Pearson, and Judith Anderson, formerly General Manager of The Queensland Ballet, have today been awarded the Medal of the Order of Australia (OAM).
Josephine was recognised for “for service to the performing arts, particularly dance, as a teacher and administrator". Tanya's citation was "for service to the performing arts, particularly ballet, as a teacher and mentor to young dancers". Judith's citation was "for service to the Queensland Ballet and to women". We congratulate Josephine, Tanya and Judith for their outstanding achievements.
The website It's an Honour has all the information you'll need to nominate more dance people for Australia's highest Honours!
There have been celebrations around the country today for our new Australian of the Year, actor Geoffrey Rush.
We congratulate him on his acceptance speech that placed the arts at the centre of Australian life and culture. He acknowledged the role of the First Australians, and said he was sure "that my colleagues will see this as an endorsement of our national story of creativity".
Senior Australian of the Year is Laurie Baymarrwangga, an extraordinary elder from the island of Murrungga in East Arnhem Land in the Northern Territory.
The Australian of the Year Awards were announced last night by the Prime Minister.
Andrea Snyder is co-director of American Dance Abroad, a new initiative in the US that promotes the export of American dance. Andrea was formerly CEO of Dance USA, and is a valued colleague of Ausdance.
Andrea will be visiting Australia for the Australian Performing Arts Market (APAM) in February, so we’re putting her in touch with the Australia Council and dance producers in Sydney and Melbourne before she goes on to APAM. She'll see a lot of Australian dance while she's here and importantly will be establishing Australian networks for possible future exchanges.
This week we hosted Shannon Litzenberger in Canberra as part of her research into Australian cultural policy. Shannon is a Canadian dance artist, writer, director and advocate who we first met at the 2009 Dance Congress in Hamburg.
Shannon is particularly interested in the political process of developing a national cultural policy; the ways in which new funding models might be developed; the cultural diplomacy strategies of the government; the National Cultural Policy Discussion Paper and the various (and many) responses received by the government as part of its consultation.
Recent funding decisions across all sectors of the small to medium performing arts sector have highlighted the widening gap between what was considered to be 'adequate' funding for these companies five years ago, and the reality of their existence today. While we highlighted the issues in our contribution to the National Cultural Policy discussion paper, we also plan see the Arts Minister, Simon Crean, to again draw his attention to the parlous state of funding for smaller key organisations, especially in dance.
We joined the many artists, companies and community organisations and made a submission to the National Cultural Policy discussion paper.
Because we think it’s important for the dance voice to be heard as part of the wider arts industry, we also coordinated the submissions from ArtsPeak and the National Advocates for Arts Education.
You can keep in touch with the development of the National Cultural Policy by joining the Arts Minister’s e-news.
As SCOPE board members formally wound up the program in Sydney on Friday, we reflected that there was much to be proud of. We developed a model for dancers' career development and management and, with Australia Council support, we've been able to assist 99 artists to realise their dreams through professional career advice and small retraining scholarships.
We are continuing with online advice and support, and we're also planning an evaluation of the program to help us find new funding partners to bring back the scholarships and professional career guidance.