2009 is proving to be an exciting year for Western Sydney Dance Action (WSDA) and dance in Western Sydney.
Firstly, WSDA would like to welcome Olivia Ansell as our new director. Olivia’s involvement over the past decade, as a producer, director, choreographer, teacher and performer, demonstrates her diversity and versatility within the NSW arts sector, has made her a valuable asset to the organisation.
Her goals for the organisation are to continue to consolidate and expand upon the achievements of WSDA to date, maintain the nurturing and unwavering support of Riverside Theatres as well as project a new, self sustainable vision and pathway for WSDA to move in to its next generation of dance development. The current program for 2009 demonstrates that this future plan for WSDA is well underway.
The highlight of WSDA’s program continues to be Dance Bites, WSDA’s annual performance season held at the Riverside Theatres. In 2009, Dance Bites is bursting with new talent and innovative new creative performances. The season will feature four fantastic new works including This Way Up by youMove (May 2009), MirrorMirror by Dean Walsh and Stalker Theatre Company (October 2009) and Sol’s Way by fLiNG Physical Theatre (October 2009). The fourth work will be announced shortly to complete the new season.
WSDA’s first season kicks off during Dance Week 2009 with This Way Up (6 – 9 May, Riverside Theatres) by Sydney’s premiere youth dance company, youMove. This Way Up will showcase the talents of the company’s young dancers performing dynamic works choreographed by Anton, Emma Saunders, Vicki Van Hout, and Jodie McNeilly. Currently in its debut year, youMove, lead by renowned Sydney choreographer, Kay Armstrong, has taken up residency in the Connect Studios in Parramatta. WSDA is proud to announce our partnership with the new company and support their residency at the Connect Studios (a new rehearsal facility in the heart of Parramatta including 5 studios, mirrors and in-built sound systems). Currently in rehearsals, This Way Up will be the first what WSDA hopes will only be one of many collaborations with the new company.
WSDA will also continue its mission to support independent artists and new collaborations as part of the 2009 program through the Dance Media Project. Supported by Parramatta City Council and a new relationship with the Parramatta Artist Studios, the Dance Media Project will provide two choreographers and two multi-media visual artists with the opportunity to collaborate and develop two new hybrid dance/movement works. These new works will be presented later this year around the Parramatta CBD. Through this project, WSDA aims to assist in artist and new work development as well as strengthening the audiences for dance in Western Sydney.
Providing education and opportunity to dance artists living in Western Sydney has continued to dominate WSDA’s strategies for 2009. Currently in development are plans to execute education programs for young dancers in the Fairfield, Bankstown and Parramatta regions (in partnership with Powerhouse Youth Theatre, Bankstown Youth Development Service, youMove and fLiNG Physical Theatre) through series’ of dance workshops and forums. WSDA is also committed to emerging artist development through providing mentorship opportunities in association with all education projects where possible. This will assist in increasing professional development and support networks for emerging artists from Western Sydney. Returning also in 2009 will be Fast+Fresh Dance to the Riverside Theatres, providing performance opportunities for young dancers and choreographers aged 16 to 21. Throughout 2009 and beyond, WSDA will continue to develop further education and professional development opportunities for young artists.
FREE MEMBERSHIPS: Throughout the month of April, WSDA will be giving away free memberships. Anyone who joins WSDA in April will not only join for free but will also receive free and discounted tickets to the Dance Bites seasons, discounted membership to MBF Health Funds, and much more. Everyone who joins will also go into the draw to win stacks of cool prizes. Contact Susie Wood, 8839 3309, during April to find out more.