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Crow's Feet - Dance Collective

Crow's Feet - Dance Collective

The fabulous Crows are celebrating their 10th anniversary in 2009.

Ten years ago director Jan Bolwell, at the age of 48, was recovering from two bouts of breast cancer. She decided to start dancing again to aid her recovery. A group of women about her age saw Gaylene Preston’s film about breast cancer ‘Titless Wonders’ in which Jan dances her work ‘Off My Chest’.

They approached her and said, ‘we want to dance like that. Will you teach us?’ Crows Feet Dance Collective was born.

An original group of four has grown to eighteen, and now boasts six grandmothers, with the eldest being 69. Bolwell has now choreographed 15 dance works for the Crows, and each year they stage a concert in Wellington.

This year they are staging two new works as part of the Wellington Fringe Festival from February 27th till March 1st.

Photo by Penny Towns

CHOROS, is a wild, sensuous Bacchic revel danced to View From Olympus by acclaimed New Zealand composer, John Psathas.

Bolwell says of this new work:
“I have had a love affair with ancient Greek theatre since my student days. While lecturing at Dunedin College of Education in the 1980s, I co-directed and choreographed a memorable production of Euripides’ The Bacchae. It is exciting to re-visit this material with Crows Feet Dance Collective, and especially to choreograph to the fabulous score by John Psathas.
The cult of Dionysus originated in Asia and these bacchants will have an exotic Persian flavour with designer Jane Ferguson emphasizing eastern colours and motifs. We have an expert belly dancer in the group and we are making use of her skills to learn this quintessentially eastern dance form.

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LEAVING HOME, the other new work, is Bolwell’s tribute to her great, great, great grandmother Jane Broadfoot who left Scotland as a young newly married woman in 1843.
“I find myself returning to my Celtic roots which become more important as I grow older. Takitoru (1995) was a first attempt to look at my heritage, in that instance from a bicultural perspective. It is fascinating to re-visit this theme in LEAVING HOME with Crows Feet, and to choreograph to Kilt, the wonderfully evocative music of renowned Wellington composer, David Downes.

Wellington Performing Arts Centre, 36 Vivian Street
Full $20, Concession $15, Fringe Addict $13
27 February 8pm
28 February 2pm & 6pm
1 March 4pm

Bookings: Downstage Theatre, cnr Courtenay Pl & Cambridge Tce.
Ph: 04 801 6946 or online at
For further information go to:

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