Women weave tale about their dancing lives
Jan Bolwell and Mona Williams combine dance traditions in Once Upon a Dance which tells the story of their dancing lives.
They are both members of Crows Feet Dance Collective, a contemporary dance company for mature women in Wellington.
Bolwell is also a playwright and actor, and teaches dance exercise classes on the Ka¯ piti Coast.
Williams is a well known professional storyteller touring frequently around Australasia.
Bolwell, who directs Crows Feet, says they both come from different cultural and dancing backgrounds.
Williams grew up in what was once British Guiana and learned her traditional dances, as well as studying ballet. Bolwell grew up in Dunedin where she learned Highland and then modern dance. The women said they found it fascinating to put the different dance traditions beside each other in a theatrical way.
Apart from storytelling, Bolwell and Williams dance and sing, and the work is richly illustrated with projected images from their lives.
But it’s not all light and amusing, says Bolwell, who says at their ages — she’s 68 and Mona 75 — they’ve experienced heartache, but dance has helped them overcome these personal traumas.
Theatreview’s review in March: “This is the kind of show you should see if you love women, dance, politics, being alive, New Zealand, rebellion, music, strength, history, stories — if you thrive on being part of the world around you and embracing everything it throws at you, you’ll find something that resonates. These are two very strong, brave, life mature women. They come from such very different cultural backgrounds and have both faced fierce adversity. This production tells those stories with depth, humour, generosity, honesty and joy.”
■ Globe 2, Main St, October 11, 12.30pm and 6pm. Bookings: www.globetheatre.co.nz, tickets $20 and $15 (concession)