Tertiary Dance Week

WORK_1Steph Hutchison in “Work”

Happy Monday Movers!

Just in case you didn’t know, this week is Tertiary Dance Week at Dancehouse. A new better-than-awesome initiative for postgraduates from dance universities around Australia to gather, share and laugh over some good-fun dance work/ideas.

This program is a site for sharing and discussion around the research explored in these tertiary institutions.

There are classes every morning of the week, workshops during the day and performances in the evening.

It’s well worth the information overload, and wonderful that we can bring nationwide explorations into one neat location package.

Have a look here for further details. You’ll find the programme below:

Tertiary Dance WeekDon’t miss out! I’ll see you there

Rachel x

Review: The Red Tree

I didn’t really know what I was walking into when I drove the hour and a half down the highway to East Geelong. Nestled in a renovated church, Geelong’s new dance theatre company, Blink Dance Company, was staging their first work with an adaption of Shaun Tan’s The Red Tree.

Storyline’s get the better of me. I love a narrative form, something to sink my teeth into. Whilst I truly value the abstract nature of dance, I think a linear narrative has the potential to connect with a greater audience simply through a wider reference of understanding. Turns out I should have read the book.

redtree2 Tan’s book is a mystical, surreal escapade through the experiences of depression. His stunning illustrations are consuming, detailed, and completely fantastical. There are few words, but what is not written is demonstrated potently through images. It was obvious, artistic director Lyndel Quick loves this book, however the page by page retelling left me somewhat…bereft.

Dance theatre has the ability to move, to bring to life imagery, ideas, physicality, tactility. The performing arts are unparalleled with delivering an actual experience and yet, for the duration of the show, I felt as though I was one step behind the storyteller. Though I understand I was meant to sense the universality of these dark feelings present in everyone, I was really craving just one “character” to connect to, to personalize the viewing experience.

red-tree1 The company relayed some beautiful images; the projections and the props were amazing in creating scenes carving a surreal view of the world. The stage felt larger than life, and I was compelled toward it, but with each blackout I was thrown into a “new page”, jilting my experience before I’d completely digested it.

There is so much potential in this new company. Discovering a unique language between dance and acting for these particular individuals has turned into a cleverly gestural experience. Still, the use of repetition, the drilling image of a city as soul-crushing was just a little transparent. I once heard a theatre director comment that if he understands the work he’s directing, what’s the point of directing it? Audiences enjoy the challenge of interpretation, the feeling of exploration and navigation. Whilst Quick tenderly recreated Tan’s images, I felt there was ultimately a lack of depth in the movement material, perhaps things were explained too well.the red tree

As a story, I was intrigued. As an audience member I had been taken from the darkness through the light, and in the end there was a stunning red tree…but my feelings hadn’t blossomed.

(images taken from shauntan.net and Blink Dance Company)


Dates: 3rd – 5th October 2013, 8pm (Sat matinee @ 2pm)

Venue: Shenton Performing Arts Centre, Cnr Garden and Ryrie Streets, East Geelong

Tickets: Geelong Performing Arts Centre

Put Your Hands Up!

Hey Movers!

It’s been a hectic few weeks here, but the sun is once again shining and I’ve come here baring an invitation.

Tonight I’ll be one of the hosts for City of Melbourne’s First Friday Dance Club, programmed by Ausdance Victoria. It’s your chance to put on your dancing shoes and have a bit of a boogie with us at Queensbridge Square in Southbank, Melbourne.

inrehearsalin rehearsal yesterday…

Running from 6-8pm, you’ll have the chance to watch three new youth companies: Bounczn Dance Company, Parallel Youth Dance Company, and Natya Bollywood, and in between we’ll give you a few more dance moves you can try out for yourself.

Come join me! I’d love to see you there.

R x

Homemade Energy Bars

Happy Friday! To celebrate, I have a treat for you.

For those of you planning a hike for the weekend (like me!), or just need a little healthy power bar to munch on you might like to try whipping this up. I was surprised in how little time it took me to make this (and they taste delicious!).

Adapted from the Move Nourish Believe website, here’s my take on things:

Homemade Energy Bars

Makes 12; Prep time 15min (2hrs to refrigerate)

Energy BarYou’ll need:

1 cup almonds

1 cup rolled oats

1 cup dried cranberries

5-7 pitted dates

1/2 cup protein powder

2 tbsp. boiling water

handful of pepitas (to sprinkle over the top)

  • Place almonds and oats in a food processor/blender and blend until coarse crumb
  • Add protein powder, cranberries, and dates and blend again
  • If possible, while blending adding the boiling water, slowly, until the mixture is well incorporated. If, like me, this is too much for your little blender, transfer to a large mixing bowl and stir by hand
  • Press the dough into a lined slice tin and sprinkle pepitas over the tip, pressing lightly into mixture
  • Place in the fridge for 1-2hrs before slicing into bars

This is one method to try, but feel free to play around with it. Next time I might try and add some coconut oil instead of dates (I love the taste), some cacao powder (for a more chocolatey bite) or some chia seeds. This is a great way to use up leftovers and ensure a healthier snack than your refined sugar-fuelled store bought bars.

Go on, give it a try. Let me know how you go!

update: This photo is another sort I’ve tried; apricot and coconut…

Energy Balls

Walking to Move It

Good morning Movers!

The weekend’s coming up…and for those of you in need of a little fitspiration this post is for you.

Cathedral Ranges

my view from Jawbone Peak

I’ve recently re-discovered the perks of hiking. I grew up in a relatively active family environment and we’d often go bush walking, rock climbing, or pack a picnic to have on the hills. It was incredible, a face full of nature and the ever cheering Vitamin D.

Over recent years, I’d lost this idea, and my weekend planning was filled with city visits where fitting in meaningful exercise seemed quite…well…tricky.

Enter, hiking.

The last few weekends I’ve been invited back into the folds of (some pretty steep) mountains and I’m feeling better for it. There are so many options in Victoria, and many not so far out of the city for those wanting a day trip. With a little Google searching, there are plenty of reviews about round trips that can give you a sense of the difficulty, the length, and suggestions on which path to take on each hike. Still, this doesn’t distract from the awe and heart-pumping pleasure that comes with incidental exercise.I can’t recommend this enough: the feeling of achievement, fresh air, sunshine and all for the price of petrol (and a few snacks). Grab your buddies, your water bottle, and some good walking shoe and give it a go. You’ll feel remarkable, truly.

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