2019 is Sydney Dance Company’s 50th anniversary and the company will be celebrating with three seasons from four powerhouses of Australian contemporary dance: Rafael Bonachela, Gabrielle Nankivell, Melanie Lane and Gideon Obarzanek.
Setting the anniversary program in motion, with a national tour that opens in Sydney in March, will be a triple bill featuring works by three of those choreographers – Bonachela, Nankivell and Lane. Bonachela will present his new work Cinco, bringing together celebrated Argentinian composr Alberto Ginstera’s String Quartet #2, the skills of fashion designer Bianca Spender, the award-winning lighting of Damien Cooper and – as the name suggests – five dancers.
Nankivell will also present a new work – Neon Aether – which will transport dancer and viewer to a vibrant yet ethereal place beyond the clouds. Lane’s work WOOF made its premiere in 2017’s "New Breed" season and presents a post-human world of primal seduction and belonging, driven by a dramatic musical score by acclaimed British electronic artist Clark.
The triple bill will play Sydney (26 March-13 April), Canberra (2-4May) and Melbourne (8-11 May) before touring regionally in Victoria (16-25 May), Northern Territory (27 July – 3 August), South Australia (8-10 August) and Tasmania (15-17 August).
November will see SDC celebrating its 50th anniversary with “Us 50”. The title work of this double bill is a grand-scale piece by Gideon Obarzanek, featuring 50 performers made up of past SDC dancers, current dancers and members of the SDC community. “When we speak about 50 years of a dance company we also speak about 50 years of dance making,” says Obarzanek. “What is made, however, is ephemeral. The dancer’s body… can be videoed and photographed but dance itself only truly exists when it is danced. So, the history of the company is stored and transmitted through the bodies of its dancers and collected in the memory of its audiences.”
The bill also features Bonachela’s 6 Breaths, an emotive and symphonic work featuring music by Ezio Bosso and costumes design by Josh Goot.
"Us 50" plays the Roslyn Packer Theatre, November 2-9.
Wrapping up the year, as has become traditional, will be “New Breed”, in which emerging choreographers are commissioned to create work on the company’s dancers. “New Breed” plays Carriageworks November 28 – December 7.
2019 will also see SDC touring Bonachela’s ab [intra] to Austria, Finland, Poland and Spain in June.
Head to the SDC website for more info.
Photo: Pedro Greig