Per­for­mance art to shake up Massey con­course


Massey’s Arts on Wed­nes­day hits the great out­doors next week, weather per­mit­ting. The univer­sity con­course is to host a piece of per­for­mance art from artist-in­res­i­dence, Stephen Bain.

In 2004, Stephen was the arts pro­gramme’s first res­i­dent, and his fi­nal multi-media cabaret in the Eve­lyn Rawl­ins room re­mains a mem­o­rable per­for­mance. Next Wed­nes­day, his public out­ing will be some­thing a lit­tle dif­fer­ent.

In 2014, Stephen took part in a res­i­dency in Tai­wan at the Taipei Artists’ Vil­lage, re­sult­ing in a pe­for­mance us­ing a large piece of blue and white striped tar­pau­lin.

‘‘I’m fas­ci­nated with how much you can be un­der the radar in tem­po­rary per­for­mance spa­ces. The blue and white fab­ric is both cam­ou­flage and the ele­phant in the room. If things look tem­po­rary it sig­nals move along – there’s noth­ing to look at here.

‘‘If we put on a dis­guise of tem­po­rari­ness, we can do any­thing.’’

The con­course he says is a venue that is ‘‘game for a change’’.

‘‘I’m in­ter­ested to see what hap­pens when peo­ple aren’t sit­ting around po­litely wait­ing for a per­for­mance.’’

The per­for­mance is next Wed­nes­day at 12.30pm. Six days of dance takes over the Globe Theatre from this Fri­day evening.

The 16th an­nual Palmer­ston North Dance As­so­ci­a­tion (PNDA) Dance Com­pe­ti­tion Fes­ti­val has at­tracted clas­si­cal bal­let, con­tem­po­rary, jazz, hiphop, and tap dance com­peti­tors from around the lower North Is­land, and be­yond.

PNDA pres­i­dent Maryanne Mechen says the age-group com­pe­ti­tion in­volves dancers from 6 years and un­der, through to 18 years and over.

‘‘The per­for­mances re­flect­ing this wide age range can move from the cute, ten­ta­tive, and care­ful, to skil­ful, bold and so­phis­ti­cated.’’

A va­ri­ety of dance styles will be show­cased for ex­pe­ri­enced Welling­ton-based dance ad­ju­di­ca­tor and ex­am­iner Deb­o­rah Halen in each of three daily ses­sions.

‘‘We have large num­bers of en­tries in the classes both for in­di­vid­ual and groups. Our com­pe­ti­tions are es­sen­tially about en­cour­ag­ing par­tic­i­pa­tion in dance, as well as cel­e­brat­ing and hon­our­ing achieve­ment,’’ Maryanne says.

‘‘We have many com­peti­tors from out­side our re­gion par­tic­i­pat­ing, but it is our own lo­cal dance schools that pro­vide the solid base for our com­pe­ti­tion fes­ti­val .’’

A ‘‘must at­tend’’ is the com­pe­ti­tion’s Gala Event on Mon­day Septem­ber 28. Royal New Zealand Bal­let icon and PNDA pa­tron Sir Jon Trim­mer will present the Jon Trim­mer Tro­phy for Best Demi-Char­ac­ter in the com­pe­ti­tion, and life mem­ber­ships to dance teach­ers Michelle Robin­son and Yvonne Hocken. City may­oral cou­ple Grant and Michelle Smith will also be in at­ten­dance.

Per­form­ing to live bag­pipes, Gala guest per­former is high­land dancer Sarah Robin­son from Hawkes Bay, who will be tak­ing part in the lo­cally hosted Per­form­ing Arts Com­pe­ti­tion So­ci­ety As­so­ci­a­tion of New Zealand (PACANZ) Young Per­former Awards on Oc­to­ber 17 and 18.

Mon­day’s Gala Event com­mences at 2pm with the ju­nior and in­ter­me­di­ate bal­let cham­pi­onships, with the soiree and pre­sen­ta­tions from 5pm, fol­lowed at 7.15pm by the se­nior bal­let cham­pi­onships

‘‘The dancers’ energy and com­mit­ment is truly in­vig­o­rat­ing,’’ Maryanne says. ‘‘They truly do de­serve an ap­pre­cia­tive au­di­ence.’’

En­try per ses­sion is $5 adults and $3 chil­dren / se­nior cit­i­zens. En­try to the Gala Event is free.


Back row from left Lara Flan­nery, Caitlin Um­bers, Jemima Scott. Mid­dle: Tayla-Rose Frisby, Caitlin Hickey, Han­nah Clark, front Alice Jenk­ins.

Stephen ‘Blob­head’


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