Good Things Come in Threes
Australasian Dance Collective Premieres Triple Bill | April 1-4
THREE incredible Australian premieres will soon be unveiled from superstar choreographers Jack Lister, Melanie Lane and Hofesh Shechter.
Australasian Dance Collective (formerly Expressions Dance Company) presents the stunning triple bill, THREE, at QPAC’s Playhouse over April 1-4.
After rave reviews in Sydney, Melbourne and Adelaide, Queenslanders finally get their chance to see the work of one of the world’s most-exciting and groundbreaking choreographers, Hofesh Shechter.
Presented in association with Hofesh Shechter Company, the collective will unleash the Australian premiere of Cult — the work that propelled Israeli-born, London-based Shechter into his globally-renowned career.
A once-in-a-generation talent, Shechter is inspired by Israeli folk dance, rock gigs, military exercise, nightclubs, installation art and film to create pumping, high energy works that are accompanied by scores that he composes himself. Instinctive and raw, Cult is a powerful illustration of his unique and acclaimed choreography – part dance, part gig, part theatre. THREE will be the first time Shechter’s work has been performed in Queensland.
Brisbane’s own rising star of the choreographic world, Jack Lister, fuses dance and visual art to create not only a stunning mainstage performance but a unique foyer experience in his piece, Still Life. Inspired by the works of the 16th and 17th century ‘Memento Mori’ movement, which served as a reminder of the inevitability of death, Lister examines our relationship with our own mortality and the perception of time.
Melanie Lane is one of Australia’s strongest female choreographic voices, her works seamlessly blending elegance with edgy physicality. In her work Alterum, she takes us on a journey to a universe that is beyond our natural world, drawing on the themes of the supernatural body, seen in history through mythological hybrid creatures or in today’s hyper-real superheroes of science fiction and pop culture, to reflect upon the human body and its search for intimacy. Sexy and cool, she will be joined by long-term musical collaborator, Clark, in this must-see production.
Australasian Dance Collective Artistic Director, Amy Hollingsworth, says the breadth of the triple bill featuring local, national and international choreographers would not only showcase the range and versatility of the collective’s dancers, but would delight audiences.
“We all respond to art in different ways, the gift of a varied program such as this, is there really is something for everyone – from moments of intricate and haunting beauty to powerful and raw abandon,” said Amy.
HOFESH SHECHTER’S ‘CULT’
Created in 2004 “as a response to the world around it,” Cult is a work for six dancers that announced Hofesh Shechter’s arrival onto the world stage.
“This piece is very close to my heart, it was the first group work I’ve created and it marked a beginning of a long creative journey,” Shechter says.
“That 16 years later Cult is still relevant, is both a testament to the rawness and integrity of the emotions it carries, as well as, unfortunately, a still tormented world, where culture and individual struggle to find balance of powers.”
Shechter is one of the world’s most-exciting choreographers and has been credited with changing the face of dance. His 2007 work In Your Rooms was lauded as one of the most important new works of the millennium. Inspired by Israeli folk dance, rock gigs, military exercise, nightclubs, installation art and film, his pumping, high energy works are accompanied by scores that he composes himself.
His epic Grand Finale has been hailed a triumph and thrilled audiences in Sydney, Melbourne and Adelaide. Cult marks the first time Brisbane audiences get a chance to see Shechter’s work.
Australasian Dance Collective’s Artistic Director, Amy Hollingsworth, has a long, personal connection with Shechter – she was a dancer in his company and performed in several of his works, including Cult.
“It is such a pleasure to place this work in the reliable hands of Amy in her new Artistic Director role. I know Amy from that very same period of Cult’s inception, and she has also danced in my company and performed this very work,” Shechter says.
Hollingsworth says working alongside Shechter left an enduring and tangible legacy on her as a dancer and a creative. “As an artist, I feel the imprint of the amazing choreographers I have had the privilege of working with over my career. Hofesh was one of those – his incredibly unique choreographic voice and meticulous pursuit of his vision not only tested and invigorated me, but had a truly lasting impact on me,” she says.
“I think his work has the same effect on audiences, grabbing you from the first moment, and not letting go, well beyond the curtain coming down.”
JACK LISTER’S ‘STILL LIFE’
Inspired by the artworks of the 16th and 17th century Memento Mori movement, which served as a reminder of the inevitability of death, Lister examines our relationship with our own mortality and the perception of time.
Translating the concepts of ‘Still Lif’e artworks into dance, Lister plays with time and symbolism in this fusion of visual art and dance.
“The piece we’ve created is really about time – taking the medium of visual art which is, at its core, a permanent artform, and translating it into our artform which is only ever transient and impermanent and in that moment, and we build these shapes that only last for seconds, and then they dissipate. But trying to capture and freeze these moments,” he says.
Lister has also joined the collective as a company dancer in 2020, from Queensland Ballet, and is relishing the full-time move to contemporary dance. “It’s not just about learning how to move your body differently, but it opens your mind up to think differently. I enjoy the fact that there’s no right or wrong, there’s no rule book and at the core of it, it’s creative and that’s what I want right now… creative freedom,” he says.
MELANIE LANE’S ‘ALTERUM’
Be transported to a universe that is beyond our natural world – one that draws on the reoccurring themes of the supernatural body, seen in history through mythological hybrid creatures or in today’s hyper-real superheroes of science fiction and pop culture.
In Alterum (Latin for ‘other’), Melanie Lane, uses past and present mythologies of ‘otherness’ to reflect upon the human body and its search for intimacy.
“I’m fascinated by narratives that speak about expressing beyond the limits of the body and have always been interested in the supernatural – whether it be through a mythological, fantasy or science fiction lens,” Lane says.
“I’m interested in how these narratives often serve as a mirror to reflect humanity and how we sometimes seek to escape our natural bodies. How can this be expressed through dance, to dream of another body, to move as another body, until we ultimately return to our true selves.”
One of Australia’s strongest female choreographic voices, Lane’s works seamlessly blend elegance with edgy physicality. Sexy and cool, she is working with long-time musical collaborator and partner Clark (UK) who has composed an original score using both strings and electronics to create a haunting, sonic world. “It’s (the soundtrack is) a radical departure from my previous works,” she says.
Australasian Dance Collective Artistic Director, Amy Hollingsworth, says she has long been an admirer of Lane’s work and had sought out the chance to collaborate with her, knowing she would create a piece that was dynamic, passionate and full of wit and complexity. “I have been following Melanie’s work for many years and while she first took my breath away with her power as a performer, she quickly became a choreographer I was fascinated by. Her work has a raw energy coupled with a glamour that is impossible not to be riveted by. She is one of Australia’s outstanding female choreographic voices,” she says.