Bangarra Dance Theatre Tours Acclaimed Bennelong
Award-Winning Work Travels to Regional WA and NSW
In 2020, Australia’s leading Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander performing arts company, Bangarra Dance Theatre, will tour its multi award-winning production of Bennelong to regional locations across New South Wales and Western Australia.
Originally choreographed and staged in 2017, Bennelong is one of Bangarra’s most lauded productions, having been awarded a total of seven Helpmann Awards including the prestigious title ‘Best New Australian Work’. Bangarra dancer Beau Dean Riley Smith was the recipient of both the Helpmann Award for ‘Best Male Dancer’ and Australian Dance Award for ‘Outstanding Performance’ in 2018 for his captivating lead role of Woollarawarre Bennelong.
Choreographed by Bangarra Artistic Director, Stephen Page, Bennelong is the story of Woollarawarre Bennelong – the namesake of Sydney’s Bennelong Point whose legacy has influenced the past, present and future of Australia’s history and people.
Woollarawarre Bennelong was a senior man of the Eora Nation, from the Port Jackson area in Sydney. He is one of the most mythologised and celebrated individuals from the days of First Contact. Bennelong was one of the first Aboriginal men to be taken from his people and introduced to European ways and one of the first Aboriginal people to have their life story recorded and documented through the early diaries of the British military. With extraordinary curiosity, courage and diplomacy, Bennelong led his community to survive a clash of cultures, and left a legacy that reverberates through contemporary life.
Bennelong showcases outstanding Australian creative talent with Jacob Nash (sets), Jennifer Irwin (costumes), and Nick Schlieper (lighting) bringing their impeccable aesthetic to the production, and Steve Francis (composer) delivering a moving and inventive score.