Australian Youth Dance Festival - Armidale 2004

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Armidale NSW

Tracks Artistic Directors create a sixty-minute site specific performance with 250 youth participants in Armidale NSW. Contracted work for Ausdance National April 12-16.
Four days to create a new 60-minute site specific work with 250 youth performers, 1 Indigenous adviser, 10 Choreographers, performed in 10 sites. Inspired by visit to sites of significance to the Indigenous locals, the work dealt with issues of place, belonging, history, massacres and celebration
This festival was designed around a choreographic development project linking AYDF tutors/choreographers, participants and the Armidale community, and reflecting the region’s stories and environment. The process began with a site visit to Aspley Falls National Park, guided by Indigenous educator Fay Ball and National Parks guides, who passed on the Indigenous history of this site.
Festival participants and choreographers met together each day over the five days of the festival to investigate ways of making performance that celebrated various aspects of place and environment. The process included discussion, workshops in storytelling, performance making and Indigenous protocols. The project team worked with festival participants to reflect those stories and the environment through the creation of a dance piece, assisting them to identify with their own places and environments, whether they were urban, regional or remote.

Director’s Notes - Ausdance National

It has become an important aspect of the Youth Dance Festivals that the dancers are involved in the performance of a large-scale performance. Tim and David have built a solid reputation for being able to work with large numbers of diverse dancers and choreographers, and collaborate to get events on quickly. They have also developed particular sensitivities around working with Indigenous issues. As such they were a clear choice to lead the 10 choreographers into an amazing performance.
Some choreographers at first found it hard to think about performing anywhere except on a polished wooden floor, and were a little reticent when we edged towards an outdoor performance where audience moved along a pathway through the dance performance areas.
The connection with AYDF has proven a very useful one for the company as it gives the Artistic Directors an opportunity to observe and work with many choreographers at once, all of whom have an interest or ability to work with youth. It also lets us see what other youth dance companies are up too.  

Creative Personnel

Cultural Advisor: Fay Ball
Facilitator: Andrew Morrish
Choreographic Advisers: Tim Newth and David McMicken
Choreographic Mentors: Gerard Veltre, Morganics, Michael Hennessy, Jeanette Fabila, Darren Green, Bernie Bernard, Mariaa Randall, Bec Reid, Ruth Osborne and Kylie Ball.
Tutors: Sandi Rapson, Sandi Woo.
Documentor: Lazlo Szabo

Performers

All AYDF participants

Tracks 2004

Artistic Directors: David McMicken and Tim Newth
Company Manager: Sue Mornane
Dance Animateur: Julia Quinn
Youth Trainee: Marko Taopo
Bookkeeper: Heather Richards
Development Consultant: Suzanne Fermanis

Committee Members:  Jackie Wurm (Chair), David Taylor (Vice-Chair), Glenn Bernardin (Treasurer), Kyleigh Hindson (Secretary/Public Officer), Ken Conway, Donna Quong, Jill MacAndrew, Kay Brown (Ordinary Committee Members), David McMicken and Tim Newth (Ex-Officio Members)

Public Fund Trustees: Rev. Steve Orme, Dr Anita Toth, Paul Wan

"The final outdoor performance of the Dance Armidale Project, brought together by Tim and David, was inspirational”  Julie Dyson - Dance Forum

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