March Dance 2020

Ivey Wawn. Photo Natalia Carney

Program Announced for Sydney’s Independent Contemporary Dance Festival

Dance Performances, Talks, Workshops, Classes & Films

March Dance, Sydney’s month-long contemporary dance festival is back in 2020 for it’s second consecutive year, from Sunday 1 to Tuesday 31 March. 189artists will engage in 114 events across 26 venues over 31 days, incorporating everything from new dance works to workshops, dance classes, residencies, showings, forums, panel talks and cinema screenings.

In 2020 the festival will showcase the dynamic ongoing work of dance artists and organisations in a range of spaces and contexts, with a range of FREE and paid events. City of Sydney is again supporting the independent Sydney dance artists to reach new audiences through the festival, as well as providing space for 30 residencies during March.

The event is an Independent Dance Alliance (IDA) project a partnership between Critical Path, DirtyFeet and ReadyMade Works.  IDA has joined forces with numerous companies and venues from across Sydney to celebrate the culture of independent dance in Sydney.

“The inaugural March Dance in 2019 was a major success,” says Anthea Doropoulos, festival manager.  “At a time when the arts and dance in particular were struggling, the festival brought the community together. Participation from both artists and general public was above what we expected. Get your diaries ready as the month of March is not to be missed! ”

The festival kicks off with Dancing The Drill on the first weekend of March at Critical Path, involving open studios from artists in residence, Jane McKernan and Rhiannon Newton, along with round table events and an opening celebration for the festival.

An exciting addition to 2020 March Dance is Dance Cinema at Palace Chauvel. Ten short dance films from local and international dance artists will be screened, presenting a variety of perspectives that bear witness to the power of dance to ignite the human spirit. Artists include Abby Warrilow and Lewis Gourlay, Ana Marija Marinov, Sarah Pini, Klara Elenius, Corina Andrian, Sue Healey, Rani Kleinow, Bonnie Curtis, Tetra Pode, Lux Eterna, Lucy Doherty, Richard James Allen and Karen Pearlman.


Dance Cinema Corina Andrian (aka Red-Cor) Levitation self portait

In Geometric Flow four dancers with Hip Hop and breaking backgrounds lead audiences on a journey through a Petersham tunnel, illustrating how graffiti and street dance connect. Artists: Dechen Gendun, Karen Otero and  Johnathan Ng.

Brand X is staging work by three favourite Sydney dance artists at East Sydney Community Arts Centre.  Elle Evangelista (independent dance artist) is premiering an ultimate dance solo 30THIRTY, celebrating the best and worst of turning 30. Romain Hassanin (Leg Up 2019, Legs on the Wall) will present Flea Brain, an amalgamation of insecurities and self-sabotage and Ferras Shaheen (FORM Dance Projects Youth Ensemble) will debut Plastic Bag, a performative video installation exploring shifting states of personal perception.

Catapult Dance Choreographic Hub is presenting a not to be missed Mixed Bill in Newcastle and at Monkey Baa Theatre in Sydney. Established Sydney choreographers Kristina Chan, Adam Blanch, Omer Backley-Astrachan and Craig Barry are presenting new Australia Dance works with performers Eliza Cooper, Ella Driene, Kiarn Doyle, Alexandra Ford, Georgia Van Gils, Allie Graham, Nicholas Jachno, Mikayla Nangle and Skip Wilcox. Works will be set to original scores by Zackari Watt and James Hazel. They are also continuing a residency exchange with Critical Path and presenting a Double Bill at the Drill, Darling Point.

ReadyMade Works’ signature short-works program Happy Hour is back in 2020 for its tenth edition at their Ultimo space. Happy Hour #10 will feature new works by esteemed independent artists Lee Serle , Linda Luke and Jade Dewi Tyas Tunggal.

FORM Dance Projects is presenting The Tap Affect at Riverside Theatres in Parramatta, the inaugural work of newly founded Australian Tap Company that celebrates Australian tap dancers inspirations.

Fondu Set. Photo Heidrun Lohr

Twelve residences are taking place in a new venue partnership at Create or Die in Marrickville, including Broadcast into Oblivion, an unpredictable performance experience by independent artist Nikki Heywood that plays with gesture, image, light, text and sound. Alfira O’Sullivan is presenting three new five-minute contemporary dance pieces exploring Suara dancers’ personal stories as they explore how their Indonesian heritage, and Australian upbringing.

During March Dance much loved comedy hip hop dance group Phly Crew will perform Phly Crew Live at Mothership Studios in Marrickville.


Contemporary dance workshops for people with and without disability are being offered for FREE by DirtyFeet as part of The Right Foot program at Redfern Town Hall, which will be lead by Melinda Tyquin, Digby Webster and Chris Bunton.

Talking Bodies returns in 2020 with Talking Bodies: Dancing Monuments, a unique lecture performance series at the Surry Hills Library with Auslan interpretation. Three of Sydney’s finest dance artists, The Fondue Set, Angela Goh and Latai Taumoepeau, demystify dance and re-write it’s history in these performance lectures that combine storytelling with performance, video and re-enactment.

The Bodies Storming panel, Glebe Town Hall, invites you to share stories and ideas with an interdisciplinary panel to explore ways to engage with transformative and uncertain times. The panel includes Raffaela Abbriano,Sophie Chao, Naoko Abe, Laura McLauchlan (UNSW), Michelle St Anne (SEI, The Living Room Theatre), Claire Hicks (Critical Path), Kate Maguire-Rosier (AusDanceNSW), Lux Eterna – Independent Artist and Sarah Pini (Macquarie University)

The Keir Choreographic Award is a national biennial award dedicated to commissioning original works and promoting innovative, experimental and cross-artform practices in contemporary dance. See the final works vying for this prestigious award at Carriageworks 12-14 March. The jury will select the 2020 Keir Choreographic Award recipient. Artists: Commissioned Alison Currie and David Cross, Angela Goh, Riana Head-Toussaint, Amrita Hepi , Jo Lloyd,  Zachary Lopez, Lewis Major, and The Farm. Jury: Paola Balla, Mette Edvardsen, Serge Laurent, Takao Kawaguchi and Claudia La Rocco.

Workshops – Masterclass in inclusive choreography with Amy Butler (Drill Hall) run by UK based dance artist (Stopgap Dance Company, Akram Khan Company) in partnership with Ausdance NSW and British Council. Safe Dance Long Table (Australian College of Physical Education) Nalina Wait (ACPE dance lecturer and Sydney dance artist) from access and inclusion to mental and physical wellbeing. Talking Bodies’ Martin Del Amo (Redfern Town Hall) a workshop for those interested in fusing text with dance.

Sydney Opera House presents Jo Llyod’s ‘OVERTURE’. When Jo Lloyd was young, she would pretend to interview famous people she’d like to meet. OVERTURE is an extension of that, a dance that considers the unrequited, the unattainable and our attempts to connect with particular beings of obsession. Sydney Dance artists will also be able to attend a masterclass with Lloyd as part of the March Dance Festival.

#marchdancesydney #cityofsydney #independentdance


For the full program and to buy tickets visit: