‘Dance On’ at the Victorian College of the Arts

Get your dance-on and see four playful dance works which will delight and entertain you as a  team of highly-trained students from the state’s premier full-time Bachelor dance degree show off their wares in their mid-year show ‘Dance ON‘.

Tucked behind the venerable training-ground where many a famous Australian performer first practiced their trade, you can check out the commitment of a cast of 20+ final year dancers as they deliver a lighthearted show of playfulness and dexterity.

The four works, choreographed both by established artists and VCA students themselves, pose questions about anatomy, form, aesthetics, and dance design, as well as exploring ideas about what art is in this current moment. Artful editing of works, delicate detail, and refined attention to choreography mean you are not seeing ‘kids at play’. You are viewing the next generation of dance-makers master their craft.

Great costuming, attention to design, and clarity in presentation make this look like a slick show. You gotta have a ‘dress rehearsal’ before you hit the main stage!

Prominent Deakin dance graduate Nat Cursio’s work ‘Quiet Death, Quiet Musical’, is a restrained study of people in groups, and of ritualistic movement. Her cast, clad in forest-green Grecian robes, walk the space in patterns, enacting rituals, their statuesque poses and sustained stillness revealing the power of pure beauty in art. ‘On the Other Side’, by 2008 VCA alumna Ben Hancock, stands out not only for its kitsch plastic flower bouquets thrown about by a faceless squad, but also for its ironic questioning of the meaning of things.

There are a range of ideas explored in all the works, and each uses a common language of en masse repetition and bodily revelation. It is hard to tell the individual from the group. The works created by two students reflected an apprenticing but also point to new experimentation and the interests of their generation. Live sound design by a contributing DJ was great to see on stage.

Experience the elegance of dance as a non-verbal language, showing all the possibilities of the human form in motion. Sneak a peek of the dancers’ shadows on the walls of the wings, as if classical sculptures.

Pop down and see the quality output of a group of practicing artists who are lucky enough to study dance full time, on your doorstop.

– Sarah
Sarah W. is a dance-trained theatre lover with a flair for the bold, and non-traditional performance platforms. On-the-street or in the box seat, she is always looking for quality works that push the envelope!

‘Dance On’ runs 9-16 June at 8pm at the Dodds Street Performance Space. Book tickets now.
The venue is accessible.

Disclosure: The Plus Ones were invited guests of The Victorian College of the Arts.
Image credit: VCA.