North of the Border


Brown's Mart Theatre, Darwin City & Northern Territory Tour

July 26 -28, Darwin. Territory Tour August 1 - 23, 1991

Northern Territory tour (Groote Eylandt, Numbulwar, Nhulunbuy, Jabiru, Oenpelli, Beswick, Katherine, Barunga).

Artists from Melbourne and Darwin combine to create a season of dance that was premiered in Darwin and then toured the Northern Territory. The tour included dance and movement workshops for community groups and young people. The tour, in association with the Territory Arts Council, was devised to provide continuity of contact with communities previously visited, and to reach communities that are new to dance-based projects running out of Brown’s Mart Community Arts.

As a season of work it had to work in the theatre in Darwin, as well as in some very remote conditions, schools, arts councils, and Aboriginal communities. Such a fine balance is difficult, but it is part of the Northern Territory artist’s life. Guest dancer David McMicken joined the cast for the Darwin Season remounting a trio section of a work that Tim Newth and Debra Batton had co-devised with him for his Melbourne Company, Storm in a Teacup. (This marks McMicken’s first performance in the Northern Territory.)

Director's Notes - Sarah Calver

Modern Dance is reflective of today’s society, it is a style of dance which explores “here and now”, it is innovative, exciting, thought provoking, and knows no boundaries!

North of the Border is a performance devised by six professional dance artists, a musician, and a visual artist. It is a show which reveals not only the different energies and styles of the artists involved, but which also blends them together in a variety of ways to create a unique performance. The created pieces reflect the world we live in, our interests, thoughts, feelings and our Northern environment … a tropical dance feast.

Creative Personnel

Project Director: Sarah Calver
Choreographers: Deb Batton, Tim Newth, Sarah Calver, Bereni Franklin, John McCormick, Hellen Sky, and David McMicken (choreographer/performer Darwin Season only).
Poster Design: Rob Hoad, Rachel O’Shea
Musician: Michael Havir


Debra Batton, Sarah Calver, Berenice Franklin, Tim Newth, John McCormick, Hellen Sky, Rachel O’Shea
David McMicken (guest performer Darwin season)

Production Personnel

Production Manager, Lighting Designer, Operator, and Tour Manager: Matthew James
Tour Coordinator: Bill Searl, NT Arts Council
Administration: Helen Haritos


Devised by the company, a look at the Northern Environment. The Billowing Fabric creates a multitude of changing forms to reflect the diverse characteristics of the Top End
Composer: Michael Havir
Costume: Rachel O’Shea
Designer: Tim Newth
Performers: Sarah Calver, Debra Batton, Berenice Franklin, Tim Newth, John McCormick, and Hellen Sky

“Let it go, let it out
Let it all unravel
Let it free and it can be
A path on which to travel” Leunig (The Age)
Whatever the journey, there is a certain amount of baggage to be handled …
Choreography: Deb Batton
Music: Michael Havir
Cartoon: Michael Leunig
Costume: Rachel O’Shea
Performers: Debra Batton, Berenice Franklin, Tim Newth, John McCormick, Hellen Sky, Rachel O’Shea

A time to think, dream, reflect and believe … images and feelings for the Central Desert Region.
Choreography: Sarah Calver
Music: Enya “Evening Falls"
Performer: Sarah Calver

“Once a trio, now the heart travels on.”
Originally conceived and performed: David McMicken, Debra Batton, and Tim Newth, for Storm in a Teacup Dance Theatre, Melbourne. Special thanks to David McMicken for performing in the Darwin Season.
Music: Not Drowning Waving, Peter Blakely, Ella Fitzgerald and Louis Armstrong, David Byrne, Laurie Anderson, the North Tanami Band, David Bowie.

Uses gestures from everyday life and from many diverse cultures to explore the nature of human interaction.
Conceived: John McCormick
Music by Warren Burt
Performed:  John McCormick and Hellen Sky

A fun and energetic dance
Choreography: Sarah Calver
Music by Michelle Shocked “When I grow Up”
Performed: Berenice Franklin, Rachel O’Shea, Sarah Calver

Remembers phrases from our past and ponders what effect they may have had.
Conceived: John McCormick
Movement created by the performers
Music: Michael Havir
Performed: Debra Batton, Berenice Franklin, Tim Newth, Hellen Sky, John McCormick

Composed of 20 movement phrases derived from the Chinese characters 1 to 20, and combined with 20 computer-generated images.
How many generations is a history of Australia?
Choreographed, performed and designed: John McCormick

CRUSH 1 & 2
A solo and a duet that looks at two different forms of cultural imperialism
Choreographed: Hellen Sky
Music: Soundtrack collaged by Hellen Sky from Radio BBC and Radio Taipei. Also Frank Sinatra “Crush on You”
Performed: Hellen Sky and John McCormick

"There is a level of mist that drifts over the world. It separates the population into the visible, the half-visible, and the ghosts.
I see her in a white dress, walking towards me, floating, but every time just when I reach out to hug her she disappears.
She is just mist.
I miss her so badly. I see the others too …
But it is my daughter I want most of all.
Even to know she is really dead.” Salina’s Dream (From El Salvador)
Conceived & Designed: Hellen Sky
Choreography in collaboration with the dancers
Music: Michael Havir
Performed: Debra Batton, Sarah Calver, Berenice Franklin, Tim Newth, John McCormick, Hellen Sky.

Northern Territory Tour

Darwin July 25-30, Groote Eylandt August 1-5, Numbulwar 6, Nhulunbuy 7-9, Jabiru 12-14, Oenpelli 13, Beswick 16, Katherine 19-23, Barunga 21.


Dance Development Office: Sarah Calver

[Under Brown’s Mart Community Arts – Executive Officer Ken Conway]


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