Dance Rebooted: Initializing the Grid brought together five international keynote speakers and 75 delegates from Australia, New Zealand and around the world to focus on the sustainability of dance practice and research.
The conference proceedings include keynote papers by Shirley McKechnie and Sarah Rubidge, with papers by Ann Daly, Janet Lansdale and Susan Kozel. The 27 conference papers covered a range of research issues that address, in different and eclectic ways, the sustainability of dance practice and research. The content represents a broad diversity of methodology and thought about how one might begin to wrestle with the critical issue of sustainability of dance practice and research. The conference elicited a range of responses that, taken together, present a broad range of strategies and approaches for addressing this issue.
Janet Lansdale’s keynote paper addresses sustainability in relation to the organising structures of academia and research. Sarah Rubidge looks at the role of practice–led research in the artist/academy relationship. Ann Daly examines the structures of dance organizations and the attitudes that underlie approaches to commercialisation and marketing. Susan Kozel discusses the impact of technology on practice. Shirley McKechnie reports on the nature of ‘choreographic cognition’ and its relationship to the development of dance in Australia.
The conference papers also address sustainability from a range of viewpoints, examining different kinds of social and economic ‘ecologies’ of dance, educational research, historical perspectives and examinations of specific artists’ practices. The conference also called for papers on any area of research, and encouraged submissions from postgraduate students that described their current research. This collection of papers therefore also includes papers on a range of general dance research topics, and provides something of a ‘mapping’ of current dance research in Australia and New Zealand dance research.
All conference papers have been peer reviewed, and I would like to express my particular thanks to Maggi Phillips and Elizabeth Dempster for their invaluable assistance in the refereeing and editorial processes.
(Dr Kim Vincs, Editor, Deakin University, Melbourne, Australia)