Eight to Eighty - The Architecture of Age


Mines House, Myilly Point Heritage Precinct, Darwin

August 10 - 14, 17 - 21, 2012 
Darwin Festival

Winner of 2013 Australian Dance Award -

Outstanding Achievement in Youth or Community Dance

Eight to Eighty is a very human dance story that explores the architecture of age, performed in and around a nearly eighty-year-old house in the Myilly Point heritage precinct, Darwin.

Dance is for everybody. Be it as a five year old at a ballet concert, an 18 year old on the night club floor, doing the Haka as a 30 year old on the football oval, waltzing with your partner on your wedding day, as a 55 year-old celebrating Harmony-day, or in your 80s doing the two step at the weekly social night. We dance to meet people, to keep fit, because it’s our job, to celebrate our culture or simply to let loose. Some of us dance because we have to - most of us dance because we love to.

Our relationship to our body changes over time. We learn new skills, challenge ourselves, assert our personality, share with others in intimate and social settings , accept change and gather body knowledge as we become wiser.

Dancing lives in the moment that it is being expressed, but also in memories of where it came alive –town halls, school quadrangles, clubs, pubs, gardens, town squares, lounge rooms and ballrooms, temples and theatres, on the beach and in the bush. Dance also lives in interactions between people, in the spaces that shared activity builds.

Director’s Notes

“About 15 years ago a television show called the Human Body, had as its introduction, a long line of about one hundred  people, standing naked in the jungle. As the camera scanned down the line you first saw a baby, then a toddler, a child, an adolescent and so on all the way to an elderly person. As I watched, I felt on a gut level a connection to my own life cycle and being part of the human race and a natural cycle.

In 2002 as part of an Asialink residence I lived in Sri Lanka for four months. On one occasion I was taken to small village to experience a 24 hour dance ritual being performed by about 100 male dancers as a healing tool for the community. Over that 24 hours I saw astonishing athletic dancers in their prime and was made to think and question by middle aged dancers tackling spiritual and esoteric themes. But it was the senior men who really blew me away, the way movement sat in their bodies was something that could only have come from a body’s knowledge of doing that movement for 50 to 70 years of your life. The experience inspired me and filled me with a joy for living.

In these two events lay some of the seeds for Eight to Eighty: a performance exploring how dance sits in the body across ages.”

Tim Newth

“Dance: Square, boogie, rock and roll, drums and rhythms, contemporary, modern, ancient, traditional, ballet, hip-hop, salsa, ballroom, bush, cultural ... it has inhabited so many forms over my life as a dancer.
As a late teenager I began a serious study of dance.
Now I look back at how dance has grown and been nurtured through my physical sense of self over 53 years –using the limits and freedoms found in my body it has provided me with joy, satisfaction, expression, meaning, and a way of sharing myself with others. Dance has given me greater insight about my physical self, and about my physical(and spiritual/personal?)relationship to others and the world at large. I have danced alone, with a partner, with social groups, and even with 25,000 others in a huge expression of community spirit and pride. I now look forward to see what new aspects of the world dance can reveal to me. I heard that Socrates learned to dance when he was seventy because he felt that an essential part of himself had been neglected. So I encourage any one to kick off your day shoes, put on your dancing shoes (or stay barefoot) and in the immortal words of KC and the Sunshine band: shake, shake, shake - shake your bootie!”

David McMicken


Tracks dedicates this performance to the memory Sue Ross, a passionate supporter of dance and the company.

Creative Personnel

Direction: Tim Newth, David McMicken
Choreography: Jess Devereux, Gary Lang, Kristy Rickert, Bryn Wackett, David McMicken and Tim Newth with Venaska Cheliah, Chandrika Munasinghe, Saranga Alwis Nirudya, Theeradet (Teddy) Suphannabutt and cast
Costume Designer and Construction: Ann Gibb
Design: Tim Newth
Original Music and Soundtrack: David McMicken

Production and Promotions Personnel

Production Manager: Kelly Blumberg
Stage Manager: Katie Boyd
Production and Stage Assistant: CJ Fraser-Bell
Deputy Stage Manager: Katie Ciesiolka
Ballet Mistress: Kathryn Lawrence
Lighting and Sound Design, Install and Operation: Dreamedia
Properties and Stage Construction: Don Whyte, Correctional Services
Wardrobe Assistant: Mariana Cleanthous
Promotions/Publicity: Gail Evans, Susan Congreve
Front of House Manager: Nicola Jackson
Head Usher: Charlie Marengo
Poster Image and Design: Mark Marcelis
Graphic Design: Narelle Sullivan
TV Advertisement: Todd Williams
Photographic Documentation: Jason Lam, Jess Devereux, Gail Evans
Film Documentation: Todd Williams


Children: Isaiah Balcombe, Clarissa Blum, Yasna Delo, Lotus Emblard, Jonathan Lokangaka, Jyotsnna Ranijithkumar, Yehani Wanigaratne
Teenagers: Tahnee Cvirn, Ashley Dougan, Annaleigh Greenwood, Jake Kunde, Bennett Muller, Kiara Musco, Venaska Cheliah
Young Adults: Lauren Campbell, Darren Edwards, Ruttiya McElroy (Suansri), Kristi Renfrey, Theeradet (Teddy) Suphannabutt, Saranga Alwis Nirudya, Lailah A. Masiga
Adults: Thevi Chelliah, Ellen Hankin, Rosa Norman, Bryn Wackett, Gary Lang, David McMicken, Chandrika Munasinghe, Brendon Cabury
Older Adults: Carmel Alderson, Darryl Butler, Antonietta Vanzella, Punny Vegter, Linda Mansour, Barry Thomson


Louvres: All Cast
Sri Lankan: Chandrika, Saranga, Yehani
Age Line Up - Eight to Eighty: All Cast
Older Adults: Antonietta, Barry, Carmel, Darryl, Linda, Punny
Rock & Roll: Antonietta, Brendan
Thai: Punny, Ruttiya, Teddy
Adults: Brendan, Bryn, Chandrika, David, Ellen, Gary, Rosa, Thevi
Australian Indigenous: Darren, Ellen, Gary
Young Adults: Darren, Kristi, Lailah, Lauren, Ruttiya, Saranga, Theeradet (Teddy)
Gene Kelly, Break, Ballet: Brendan, Bryn, Clarissa, Darryl, David, Gary, Jake, Jonathon, Kiara, Linda, Lotus, Tahnee, Yasna
Teenagers: Ashley, Annaleigh, Bennett, Jake,  Kiara, Tahnee, Venaska
Indian: Jyotsnna,Thevi, Venaska
Children: Clarissa, Isaiah, Jonathan, Jyotsnna, Lotus, Yasna, Yehani
Chair Grid: All Cast


Keramika (Part 2): (Pixelord (Devyanin Alexey))
Gata Bera: (Traditional Sri Lankan)
Danno Buddunge: (Sri Lankan)
Waving From Windows: (Elbow)
To Build A Home: (Quigley A/McDonald L/Heeringa L)
Ballin’ The Jack: (Smith Chris/Burris James Henry)
Adagio For Strings: (Barber Samuel)
Rabum Sukhotai: (Thai Traditional)
Quando Quando Quando: (Renis T/Testa A/Drake E)
Walking After Midnight: (Block A/Hecht D)
Do You Wanna Dance: (Freeman Bobby)
Didge-A-Boogie-Doo: (Killingly Paul Wesley)
Lao Khruan: (Traditional Thai)
Singto: (Bualuang)
Kakadu Billabong 7:01 am Magpie Goose: (Gilbert Leslie David)
Goodbye: (Christensen P/Plaschg A/Ring S)
Settle Down: (Johnson K/Tetaz F)
Drumming (Parts 1-4): (Reich Steve)
The Wilhelm Scream: (Litherland James Blake)
Mirrorage: (Mesirow C/Rechtshaid A)
Breathless: Shankar Mahadevan
When I Grow Up: (Henderson R/Heyman E)
Wonderful: (Alexakis A/Montoya C/Eklund G)
Ten Little Kids: (Louris G/Olson M)
Forever Young: (Gold M/Lloyd B/Mertens F)
Clap You Hands: (Furler S/Dixon S)
Kids: (Goldwasser B/Vanwyngarden A)
Burning Down The House: (Byrne D/Weymouth T/Frantz C/Harrison J)

Thank You

Allanah Andersen, Carmel Alderson, Ricky Borg, Betty Chapman, Venaska Cheliah, Elizabeth Close, Stephanie Cvirn, Garry Ferguson, Ian Kew, Andy Lay, Jonathan Lokangaka, Didge McDonald, Joanna Noonan, Gavin Perry, Renee Rangataua-Rawhiti, Sue Ross, Kate Shannon and Matt Lymbury, Bilha Smith, Pascal Tremblay, Brian Tucker, Eddie Willoughby-Smith, Don Whyte, All About Party Hire, Darwin City Council, Darwin Correctional Services and James, Darwin Festival, Eyesight Security, Knock About Chefs, McMinn’s Pumping Systems, NT Scaffolding, Palm Springs, The Department of Lands and Planning, The National Trust of Australia (Northern Territory), The Salvation Army Opportunity Shops, Wilson Hire, Wormald Security.


Northern Territory National Trust, Southern Cross Television, Dreamedia, Darwin International Airport, NT Wine Sales

Funding Bodies

Tracks is assisted by: the Commonwealth Government through the Australia Council, its arts funding and advisory body; and the Northern Territory Government

Tracks 2012

Artistic Co Directors: David McMicken and Tim Newth
General Manager: Susan Congreve
Administrator: Gail Evans
Production Manager: Kelly Blumberg
Dance Animateur: Jess Devereux
Bookkeeper: Heather Van Anholt

Committee Members: (Chair) David Taylor, (Vice-Chair) Jill MacAndrew, (Treasurer) Glenn Bernardin, (Secretary/Public Officer) Michael Grant, (Ordinary Committee Members) Ken Conway, Nick Papandonakis, Stephanie Cvirn, (Ex-Officio Members) David McMicken and Tim Newth

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

Patron: Her Honour the Honourable Sally Thomas AM, Administrator of the Northern Territory



Explore Further

Iconic Tracks Works

Older Adults Home Page

Eras of Youth Dance

A Culturally Diverse Voice

Audience Response

“ …beautifully expressing the joy of our multi-age and multicultural community.” Ian O'Reilly

“The show is full of charisma, exquisite movement and topped off with moments of giggles & tears...” Ausdance NT

“....what a beautiful show. Goose bumps. So proud to be in Darwin right now.” Miranda Tetlow

“…an amazing performance that truly highlighted the beauty of one’s life span. …illustrated the joy of dance throughout the various physical ages seamlessly.
As a 19 year old male dancer who is a part of the Australian HipHop culture I was amazed that 8 to 80 (or any dance performance) could move me near to tears. I commend Tracks Dance for being able to move me so, as this is the first time it has happened to me.” Aaron Lim, D*City Rockers

"Theatrically impressive, community inclusive." Alex Ehrlich

“…the absolute joy of each of the dancers was palpable.”

“I thought it was fantastic, beautiful, sensuous, joyous and a celebration of the human love of dance at all ages!”

“I was struck by the levels of detail. The melding dance styles, and the costumes show-casing the backgrounds of the dancers themselves. The confidence of youth, and the poise that strengthens and fades with time. As I remember the performance, my mind's eye is caught in the dance of age, the dance of life."

“Using the building as part of the performance was brilliant. Letting the performers act as individuals, yet be part of the group, added to the quality of the whole.”

“…such a celebration of humanity.”

“It was beautiful -- unmistakably real”

Cast Response

"No matter how old you are, what colour you are, how you are feeling etc Tracks makes me feel at home."

"Getting old tends to be a touchy subject for me, and I can be quite overdramatic about it, but the grace and confidence both the adults and seniors portrayed was just breathtaking. Made me think twice about getting old..."

"I found a real sense of community, one that I haven’t experience for a long time. Its not the same as participating in a community sausage sizzle or a similar community event,. it was on a much deeper level on par with the warm glow that family sometimes offers."

"Tracks is an amazing celebration of the constellation of stories and people of the NT. And while in so many other areas people seem bent on making the NT like "other" places, Tracks confronts the cringe and shows that style, culture and humanity can be celebrated in distinctly NT forms."

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