Dance prizes open doors worldwide
TOWNSVILLE- BASED dance company Dancenorth is still on a high after scooping two prestigious Helpmann awards for its production Attractor.
It is the first time the company has claimed a Helpmann, Australia’s equivalent to the Tony Awards of Broadway or London’s Olivier awards, while Dancenorth was the only Queensland- based company to win an award.
Dancenorth artistic director Kyle Page said they hoped to leverage on the recognition the awards would provide to gain more work around the globe.
“It definitely gives us kudos and amazing recognition. This will open doors and opportunities for us around the world,” Mr Page said.
The awards were announced at a gala event in Sydney’s Capitol Theatre this week.
Attractor collected awards for Best Dance Production and Best Choreography in a Ballet, Dance or Physical Theatre Production.
The production is a collaboration between Dancenorth, Indonesian music duo Senyawa and Melbourne choreographers Lucy Guerin and Gideon Obarzanek.
It opened to rave reviews at a premiere at Asia TOPA in Melbourne in February.
Mr Page said the awards were a real coup for Dancenorth, Townsville and Queensland.
He said they were the only regionally based and Queensland company to win an award although QPAC in association with Brisbane Festival collected the Best Ballet award for the staging of French company Ballet Preljocaj’s Snow White.
Mr Page said Attractor epitomised the artistic growth and direction of the company.
“Dancenorth is focused on accessible works that encourage collaboration and engagement, and connect culture, audiences and community through storytelling,” he said.
“Our ability to really deliver to that brief through productions like Attractor has seen us emerge as a modern leader in the industry and is demonstrated by these awards.”
The work is inspired by Senyawa’s reinterpretation of the Javanese tradition of entering trance through dance and music and blends modern and Indonesian folk music.
The production will be featured at Brisbane Festival in September and will tour the United States in October and Canada and European festivals next year.
Dancenorth will showcase a performance called Tectonic on a beachfront stage daily during Strand Ephemera from July 29 to August 5.