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Art That Speaks Volumes

10 June 2004

Art That Speaks Volumes

Dancers: Anita Hunziker and Travis Khan Photography: Matt Grace

Eight student choreographers will premiere their original work in the Smokefree Arts Season of Intimate Space, the 2004 choreographic season by second and third year contemporary dance students from the New Zealand School of Dance.

Previous choreographic seasons have launched the careers of Sarah Knox (Black Grace Dance Co.), Ross McCormack (Australian Dance Theatre), Lance Riley and Erynne Gleeson (Footnote Dance Company). Come and see the choreographers who at the beginning of their careers will lead NZ contemporary dance into the 21st century.

The Smokefree Arts Season of Intimate Space consists of two separate works - the first is based on the expressive works of French sculptor, Auguste Rodin. With the use of specific sculptures as their creative starting point the students aim to take the audience on a journey through what they perceive as the emotional history still alive in the sculptures of Rodin.

"For my piece I have drawn inspiration from Rodin's Gates of Hell which has so many intricate sculptures through it," says Elizabeth Kinley about her choreographic work, "this was a fantastic creative influence for me."

The other work is inspired by one of New Zealand's finest artists, Colin McCahon. Colin McCahon's paintings are the impetus behind this piece and some of the landscapes form settings for fantasy narratives. Within the choreography physical limitations will be pushed in reflection of McCahon's ability to carry painting beyond societal constraints.

Third year student, Travis Khan explains what Colin McCahon's influence has meant for his choreography, "The words and other symbolic figures in his paintings form the inspiration for my piece," "I aim to in my choreography explore a non-restrained form of communication through harsh physicality, with the same courage shown by McCahon."

Also lending their talents to this production are two acting students from Toi Whakaari: NZ Drama School and Wellington composers Stephen Gallagher and Micka, who have created a new score that captures the real essence of each piece.

"The 2004 choreographic season, continues the tradition of presenting innovative, dynamic works by fresh new talent," said Wendy Wallace, Head of Contemporary Dance at the School.

This creative journey is made possible thanks to the support of Smokefree Arts and The Performing Arts Foundation of New Zealand. Smokefree Arts is a major sponsor of the New Zealand School of Dance and Toi Whakaari: NZ Drama School.


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