National Dance Forum

National Dance Forum


    Tracks Dance Studio, Harbour View Plaza, Darwin City

    August 9 - 10, 2019

    Expand your thinking about Dance

    Drawing dancers and critical dance thinkers together from across the Northern Territory and Australia, the 2019 biennial National Dance Forum explored the notions of HOME – from dance in the body to home as a physical sense of place.

    The Forum featured a stunning lineup of dance industry experts including Nicholas Rowe (Auckland), Thomas Mayor (Darwin) and Marilyn Miller (Cairns) to mention a few.

    Companies and independent dancers represented every State and Territory of Australia making it a truly national forum.

    National Dance Forum Report

    Forum Themes

    • Lineage, disruption and action
    • Costume, object and ritual
    • Belonging and the ageing body
    • Shifting values and dance education
    • Itinerant workforce

    The heart of the two-day program acknowledged that dance is a political force, a provocation for change, and a much-needed disruptor. A First Nation dance voice and movement in the ageing body both played a central role in the Forum conversations.

    The National Dance Forum (NDF) was made possible through the assistance provided by the Northern Territory Government through Arts NT.

    Key Personnel

    The two-day program was put together by the National Curatorial Panel. Consisting of five members, three from the NT and four from regional Australia, the panel brought a strong sense of people and place.

    National Curatorial Panel Chair

    Annette Carmichael - Independent Dance Artist and Creative Producer, WA


    David McMicken - Tracks Dance Company, Artistic Co-Director, NT
    Tim Newth - Tracks Dance Company, Artistic Co-Director, NT
    Avril Huddy - QUT Lecturer in Dance, Creative Industries Faculty, School of Creative Practice, QLD
    Rachael Wallis - Independent First Nation Dancer and Choreographer based in Nhulunbuy, NT

    Forum Management

    Adelaide Wood - Tracks Dance Company, Company Director, NT
    Andrea Wicking - Event Logistics, Salty Plum Events, NT

    Company Partners

    Tracks Inc is assisted by the Australian Government through the Australia Council, its arts funding and advisory body; and is proudly sponsored by the Northern Territory Government.

    Tracks 2019

    Artistic Co-Directors: David McMicken and Tim Newth
    Company Director: Adelaide Wood
    Administrator: Jessica Mellor
    Production Manager: Duane Preston
    Dance Animateur: Kelly Beneforti
    Associate Artistic Director: Jess Devereux
    Bookkeeper: It Figures

    Committee Members: Mary Durack (Chairperson), Glenn Bernardin (Treasurer), Michael Grant, David Taylor, Ken Conway, Venaska Cheliah, Sudha Coutinho, Max Dewa Stretton. David McMicken, Tim Newth, Adelaide Wood (Ex-Officio Members)

    Public Fund Trustees: Dr Anita Toth

    Patron: Her Honour the Honourable Vicki O’Halloran AM, Administrator of the Northern Territory


    Photo Charlie Bliss. Welcome to Country.
    Photo Charlie Bliss. Dr Nicholas Rowe.
    Photo Charlie Bliss. Shifting Values and Dance Education session.
    Photo Charlie Bliss. (l-r) Dr. Nicholas Rowe, Dr Priya Srinivasan, Mervyn Street, Sinsa Mansell.
    Photo Charlie Bliss. (l-r) Mervyn Street, Sinsa Mansell.
    Photo Charlie Bliss. Thomas Mayor.
    Photo Charlie Bliss. Wendy Morrow.
    Photo Charlie Bliss. (l-r) Anna Goat, Lisa Svara.
    Photo Charlie Bliss. Marilyn Miller.
    Photo Charlie Bliss. Rachael Wallis applying ochre to Colm O’Callaghan.
    Photo Charlie Bliss. (l-r) Tegan Nash, Rachael Wallis, Maari Gray.
    Photo Charlie Bliss. Bec Reid
    Photo Charlie Bliss. Ellen Hankin with the Grey Panthers.
    Photo Charlie Bliss. Val Hristova with the Grey Panthers.
    Photo Charlie Bliss. David McMicken.
    Photo Charlie Bliss. Merrkiyawuy Ganambarr Stubbs.
    Photo Charlie Bliss. (l-r) Darryl Butler, Venaska Cheliah, Kelly Beneforti, Dalisa Pigram
    Photo Charlie Bliss. Gary Lang with Bilawi Donnelly Weatherall.
    Photo Charlie Bliss. Bungul with Merrkiyawuy Ganambarr Stubbs and Rachael Wallis.
    Photo Charlie Bliss. (l-r) Liz Rogers, Annette Carmichael, Anne Gardner, Nicole Ward, Bryn Wackett, Jess Devereux, Miriam Nicholls, Rachael Wallis, Valerie Hristova.
    Photo Charlie Bliss. (l-r) Carol Brown, Raymond D. Blanco.
    Photo Charlie Bliss. (l-r) Frankie Snowden, Madeleine Krenek.
    Photo Charlie Bliss. (l-r) Jacob Boheme, Hilary Coyne.
    Photo Charlie Bliss. (l-r) Marita Smith, Jenny Kinder, David Taylor.
    Photo Charlie Bliss. (l-r) Felicity Bott, Nicole Ward.
    Photo Charlie Bliss. (l-r) David Taylor, Jenelle Saunders.
    Photo Charlie Bliss. (l-r) Dalisa Pigram, Rachael Swayne.
    Photo Charlie Bliss. (l-r) Bec Reid, Adelaide Wood, Annette Carmichael, Rachael Wallis
    Photo Charlie Bliss. Helen Herbertson.
    Photo Charlie Bliss. Witiyana Marika.
    Photo Charlie Bliss. Annette Carmichael.
    Photo Charlie Bliss. (l-r) Adelaide Wood, Andrea Wicking and the Salty Plum team
    Photo Charlie Bliss. National Dance Forum curatorial panel (l-r) Tim Newth (Tracks), Avril Huddy (QUT) David McMicken (Tracks, Annette Carmichael (Independent practitioner WA), Rachel Wallis (Independent practitioner NT)


    “It was great; you successfully started the dialogue about dance in Australia with it commencing 60,000 years ago.” - Survey respondent

    “This Forum has been about impact, the future and change for the future which is a very different approach than previous forums. The location has meant that we have been able to have conversations, and pretty frank conversations, because it is here.”  - Annette Carmichael, Ausdance National Committee member

    “We are having deep, informed dialogues here about things that we haven’t even started talking about down south.” - Alice Weber, Choreographer

    “[Darwin] significantly affected the context and feeling of [the Forum] greatly. Because of the connection to country and the Aboriginal culture that Darwin and Tracks have, it meant we could have a much more radical conversion about First Nations issues.” - Survey respondent


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