Careers in dance

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    How the National Dance Forum can benefit your dance practice

    It's been described as the most significant platform for dialogue across the Australian contemporary dance sector. For two days, escape the isolation and immerse yourself in discussion, debate, networking, new ideas and reflection on artistic practice.

    Leigh Warren a lifetime of achievement

    Leigh Warren will be honoured with the Lifetime Achievement Award at the 2014 Australian Dance Awards for his outstanding contribution to dance as a performer, choreographer, teacher, director and mentor over four decades.

    Dance for Parkinson’s in Australia

    For people with Parkinson's disease, high quality dance classes led by trained professional teaching artists are becoming internationally acknowledged and valued as both a creative activity and an evidence-based therapeutic intervention. From my own dancer’s perspective, these classes are a beautiful and satisfying way to authentically share my own experience and passion for the art form in way that also connects to community.

    Accented Body

    Arguably the largest and most complex independent project of this nature staged in Australia, Dr Cheryl Stock's accented body was a project of small break-through discoveries and ongoing creative partnerships.

    An extraordinary career: Cheryl Stock, AM

    Julie Dyson pays tribute to Cheryl Stock who was recently awarded an AM. Cheryl is an artist and scholar who has influenced four decades of Australian policy, dance education, scholarship and research, dance leadership and artistic vision.

    Australian dance touring programs, networks and resources

    Dance touring in Australia is supported and delivered by touring and support organisations who deliver government funded touring programs and/or work with the many networks of presenting venues and tour coordinators. Here we briefly outline touring programs, mechanisms and industry organisations.

    Funding for touring dance

    Are you interested in touring your dance work or developing an existing work to tour? The first step is understanding the available funding and support. Here we briefly outline grants for touring dance.

    Study dance at university

    These universities and colleges offer full-time, specialist, post-secondary dance courses staffed by former artistic directors, choreographers, dancers and lecturers who train some of Australia's best dancers and dance teachers.

    Facilitated marriages

    This paper outlines the Future Landings project run by Ausdance WA, examining how the artistic relationships between the choreographers played out, and suggests steps that may be taken to ensure that such ‘facilitated marriages’ have the best chance of success.

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    Goals

    Sustainable careers for dance artists

    The dancer’s performing life is highly focused, demanding dedicated vocational training from an early age, and it depends on time-consuming creative and physical regimes. Dance artists, in contrast with other artists, are particularly challenged when it comes to professional career development.

    Projects View all

    National Dance Forum 2015

    This National Dance Forum will focus on the inherent concerns and realities affecting current professional practice in Australia.

    Australian Dance Awards

    The annual Australian Dance Awards recognise and honour professional Australian dance artists who have made an outstanding contribution to Australian dance. The event aims to publicly honour and reward those who have, through their achievements, raised the standards of dance in Australia; raise the profile and prestige of dance and acknowledge the depth and diversity of the dance profession in our society; and present a performance program representing excellence and diversity in the pinnacle of both innovative and established dance.

    Keith Bain Choreographic Travel Fellowship

    Before Keith Bain OAM passed away in 2012, he left a bequest to Ausdance National to provide financial assistance for an emerging choreographer to travel internationally with the sole purpose of developing and extending their choreographic practice.

    2012 National Dance Research Forum

    In 2012, Ausdance National, with the Tertiary Dance Council of Australia (TDCA), hosted a forum for dance researchers at Deakin University and Victorian College of the Arts in Melbourne.

    2013 National Dance Forum

    Exploring the unique qualities of dance as an artform and why we choose it as our mode of expression, communication or storytelling, this forum embraced views from multiple perspectives: maker, dancer, educator, audience member and the broader community, while focusing on a central question, 'Why dance?'

    Shaping the landscape—celebrating dance in Australia

    This, the fourth book in the series Celebrating Dance in Asia and the Pacific, explores the current dance scene in Australia from a wide perspective that mirrors the creative engagement of artists with Australian culture and the landscape.

    2011 National Dance Forum

    Some of Australia’s most exciting dancers, choreographers, curators, critics and collaborators met to discuss and reflect on the state of dance practice in Australia now, and to chart a course for the future.

    Securing career opportunities and professional employment for artists

    SCOPE’s aim was to ensure that dance artists proactively participated in and effectively managed their own careers, education and personal development. Each of the artists worked with a professional career counsellor to develop their own career action plans. The program aimed to capture, transfer and adapt the creative capital of the individual artist to other areas of work and productivity.

    Supporting the Live Performance Training Package

    After nation-wide research, Innovation and Business Skills Australia concluded that 'there is strong industry and community demand for national qualifications to help lift standards across the profession and set clear national benchmarks which promote consistency while maintaining flexibility'.

    Dance Plan 2012

    Identifies four ambitions for 2012, with a list of achievable objectives. These ambitions reflect the diversity and dynamism of dance in our communities. They require our energy and attention to ensure that dance, as an artform and an enjoyable form of recreation for all, remains at the heart of Australian life.

    Dance in the National Cultural Policy

    Ausdance supported the development of Australia's National Cultural Policy. We believed it should not only deliver new ideas and strategies, but also reflect the ambitions of the Australian community (including those identified in Dance Plan 2012).

    It should respect and promote Indigenous perspectives, and encompass the cultural ambitions of our multicultural society. It should reflect and acknowledge the breadth of cultural activity and diversity, including professional excellence in artistic performance and education, community access and participation, and artists’ career development and sustainability.

    Publications

    Ausdance National newsletter

    Published every two months, and themed around an event or popular dance topic, our email newsletter reflects on professional dance practice and shares ways for you to get involved.

    Dancehouse Diary

    The Dancehouse Diary aims to bring the independent dance makers’ thinking to wider audiences. It aims at developing rigorous content around their work and triggering new perspectives and connections around their research. It is a catalyst for provoking critical thinking, discourse and a poetic vision of dance and other related arts forms. It is Dancehouse’s mission to cultivate access and appreciation of this art form and for that, the Diary is a less ephemeral and a more in-­depth attempt to make those connections.

    Asia–Pacific Channels

    Asia–Pacific Channels is the bi-annual newsletter of the World Dance Alliance (WDA), published by Ausdance National in collaboration with MyDance Alliance in Malaysia. It profiles dance events and activities from WDA members throughout the Asia–Pacific region.

    The Dame Peggy van Praagh memorial address

    Dame Peggy van Praagh, founding Artistic Director of The Australian Ballet, had a vision of developing a unique dance culture for Australian dance. The Ausdance memorial addresses pay tribute to, and acknowledge, her legacy in this country.

    Dance in Australia: a profile

    A report on the organisational structure of dance in Australia, the situation of individual dancers, the characteristics of audiences, funding issues, and dance education and training

    News / Blog / Press Releases / Events View all

    National Indigenous Choreographers Residency—expressions of interest

    Arts House is excited to present a new initiative: the National Indigenous Choreographers Residency.

    Five established Indigenous choreographers from around Australia will work with Melbourne-based Indigenous choreographers in an intensive and immersive residency during Dance Massive 2015. Successful participants will work together in North Melbourne, Victoria in a development environment where they will explore and exchange choreographic language, technique, inspirations and skills.

    As well as the residency, during Dance Massive the participants will be guided through a bespoke program of events including

    • an international market session
    • opening nights
    • studio showings
    • artists' breakfasts
    • networking opportunities
    • pitch sessions with the international and national delegations.

    Victorians Jacob Boehme and Mariaa Randall will lead artists on the National Indigenous Choreographers' Residency.

    Participants must be available for all of the residency from Sunday 8 March to Tuesday 17 March 2015.

    International dance educators workshop

    Shifting focus: teacher-directed to student-centric dance education

    The 2014 International Dance Educators Workshop is designed for primary and secondary dance and generalist teachers and dance practitioners to help build your skills to teach dance or use dance to teach other subjects.

    Immerse yourself in a two-day interactive and practical workshop with leading dance educators. Network with dance teachers, practitioners and artists. Learn composition, improvisation tools, strategies for senior students and movement games for early years/junior students. Purchase the latest in dance teaching and learning resources at a 20% discount. Hear about safe and inclusive dance practice with a focus on moving from a teacher-directed to a student-centric learning and teaching model.

    Weekend intensive with Legs on the Wall

    After the huge success of their Wall Running classes earlier this year, Legs on the Wall are very pleased to be offering an intensive weekend on the wall!

    Led by the amazingly talented Rick Everett, participants will have 2 full days to extend existing skills or learn completely new ones. Come away with the gravity-defying skills of wall running, flying and other amazing feats! (This could be the perfect early Christmas present for that acrobat in your life!)

    Classes are open to all skill levels but a high level of fitness is required.

    When: 10am - 4pm, Saturday 13 - Sunday 14 December
    Where: The Red Box, Legs On The Wall, 91 Canal Road Lilyfield
    Cost:  $400.00

    For bookings or further information please email Skadi or T 02 9560 9479.

    Tanja Liedtke Fellowship

    The Tanja Liedtke Foundation is now inviting applications for the 2015 Fellowship which will run from 3 August to 5 September.

    Applicants should be between the ages of 20 and 35 and who are citizens or permanent residents of Australia.

    The 2015 Fellowship program includes a 3-week creative development residency at ada Studio in Berlin, attendance at the international dance festival Tanz im August, and participation in Tanzlabor_21’s Summer Lab in Frankfurt am Main.

    More information and how to apply can be found on the Tanja Liedtke Foundation website.

    Deadline for applications: 12 December 2014.

    Previous TLF recipients have been Joseph Simons (2013) Antony Hamilton (2009) and Katarzyna Sitarz (2011).

    Motion capture

    Edith Cowan University is excited to announce that WAAPA has a new motion capture facility that will be utilised 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 complete Media Release.

    Performing Arts Market NZ 2015

    9 –11 March, Auckland 2015

    The Performing Arts Market is run by the Performing Arts Network of New Zealand (PANNZ). It is New Zealand’s sole marketplace for the promotion of professional tour ready dance, theatre and music productions.

    It is also an important forum for connecting artists and presenters, debating the issues facing our industry and building capacity within our sector. PANNZ is attended by festival directors, venue managers, artists, producers and industry stakeholders.

    Important dates

    29 Sep: Registrations/applications open
    27 Oct: Producer submissions to Cyberpaddock close
     3  Nov: Presenter voting round opens
    17 Nov: Presenter voting round closes
    24 Nov: Pitches announced
    20 Dec: Earlybird registrations close
    30 Jan: Registrations close (late fees begin)
    9 –11 Mar: PANNZ Market 2015

    For more information visit the PANNZ website.

    The Corner Dance Lab 2015

    16 – 24 January 2015

    Dance Integrated Australia and The Farm is excited to be hosting the second Corner Dance Lab in beautiful Federal (northern New South Wales).

    The artistic line up for The Corner Dance Lab 2015 is:

    Phil Blackman, Sean Campbell, Philip Channells, Hsin-Ju Chiu (Raw), Ben Ely, Kate Harman, Julian Louis, Kimberly McKintyre, Lee-Anne Litton, Kellie O’Dempsey, Timothy Ohl, Sarah-Vyne Vassallo, Gavin Webber.

    Participants at the inaugural Corner Dance Lab, January 2014. Photo: Tim Standing / Daylight Breaks

    As an independent artist who grew up in Byron Bay, it was my immense pleasure in returning to the region to participate in The Corner Dance Lab. Having the opportunity to work with a number of world-renowned leaders in dance and physical theatre, amongst such an inspiring and rich natural landscape made this experience unbeatable. Working alongside such a diverse range of artists in such a collaborative manner was truly remarkable and the artistic connections created are invaluable. The intensive needs to exist as a mainstay annual event for both the local and Australian wide artistic community.—Harrison Hall, Independent Artist (Melbourne)

    Early Bird Expressions of Interest are now open. Register now and save $100!

    Request an EOI form or telephone Philip Channells on +61 432 073 304 for more information.

    Read about The Corner Dance Lab 2014.

    Help us shape the NDF2015 program: submit your ideas, proposals and feedback

    Submit your ideas and proposals

    Please use the NDF2015 proposals form (1MB PDF) to submit your ideas and feedback. Email the form to NDF2015 by Friday 3 October 2014.

    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 Fourth Australian Dance Movement Therapy Conference

    The Dance Movement Therapy Association of Australia (DTAA) turns 21 in 2015. To celebrate, the DTAA and the Hanny Exiner Memorial Foundation will present 'Broadening the spectrum: dance and other expressive arts therapies for health and healing' from 12–14 July 2015 at The Historic Abbotsford Convent, Abbotsford, Victoria.

    Dr. Sherry Goodill, Chairperson of the Department of Creative Arts Therapies at Drexel University, USA, and President of the American Dance Therapy Association, is the first keynote speaker confirmed. Sherry, (PhD, BC-DMT, NCC, LPC), has been working as a dance/movement therapist and educator since 1980. She holds a Masters in creative arts therapy with a specialisation in dance/movement therapy from Hahnemann Medical College, and a PhD in medical psychology with a concentration in mind/body studies from The Union Institute and University. In 2005, Sherry published An Introduction to Medical Dance/Movement Therapy: Health Care in Motion. She also serves on the editorial panels for the Arts in Psychotherapy journal and the Journal of Creativity in Mental Health.

    Pre and post conference workshops with local and international presenters will be offered.

    A call for papers will be made later in 2014.

    The DTAA Committee welcomes interest from members in contributing to the development of the conference. Please email Kim Dunphy.

    Keir Choreographic Award—winner announced

    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.

    Dancehouse residency programs

    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.

    World Alliance for Arts Education Global Summit 2014 calls for abstracts

    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

    2014 International Dance Day message

    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.

    Pay the dancers

    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

    Talking dance—meet the makers at the 2014 Australian Performing Arts Market

    Ausdance celebrates Australian dance makers at APAM 2014

    In February 2014, Ausdance National and Ausdance Queensland hosted Talking dancemeet 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.

    NAAE concerned for future of UNESCO cultural program

    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.

    Dance and science—knowledge and creativity.

    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.

    National Dance Forum program

    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.

    TAFE funding cuts and the arts

    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.

    Good news from major performing arts companies

    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.

    A night to remember at the Australian Dance Awards

    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.

    Catherine Osborne (l) President, Ausdance WA and Lauren Malkin (r) Client Manager AON Risk Services, presented Lucinda Sharp with her award for Services to Dance. Photo: Matthew Thompsett

    Report on national dance research forum

    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.

    Speakers included: (l to r) Dr Carol Brown (Uni of Auckland), Dr Kim Vincs (Deakin) & Ruth Gibson (igloo).

    Australia Dancing leaps into Trove

    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.

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