Dancehouse

2018 KEIR CHOREOGRAPHIC AWARD

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2018 KEIR CHOREOGRAPHIC AWARD ARTISTS:

AMRITA HEPI
BHENJI RA
BRANCH NEBULA (LEE WILSON & MIRABELLE WOUTERS)
LILIAN STEINER
LUKE GEORGE
MELANIE LANE
NANA BILUŠ ABAFFY
PRUE LANG

*Artist biographies below

 

2018 KEIR CHOREOGRAPHIC AWARD JURY:

ANNA CY CHAN (HK)
LUCY GUERIN (AUS)
ISHMAEL HOUSTON JONES (USA)
ESZTER SALAMON (BE/FR)
CHRISTOPHE SLAGMUYLDER (BE)
MEG STUART (GE/BE)

READ MORE ABOUT THE JURY

 

Dancehouse is extremely proud to announce the third incarnation of the Keir Choreographic Award (KCA). KCA has assumed a significant and dynamic place in the Australian dance landscape. It offers eight artists the time and space to create and present a fully funded new work, a remarkable context in which to engage with international perspectives and an opportunity to connect with new and ever expanding audiences for dance in Australia. The KCA today is an unmissable national mini-festival, assembling an inspiring and diverse community of artists, international guests, audiences, and local and national stakeholders.

PROGRAM 1 & 2 artists TBA

BOOK NOW for both programs

 

WHAT IS THE KEIR CHOREOGRAPHIC AWARD?

The Keir Choreographic Award (KCA) is a national biennial award dedicated to the commission, presentation, promotion and dissemination of new Australian choreography..

Choreographic Art in the 21st Century is an increasingly expanded and international field, incorporating  a multiplicity of practices and  production modes, and a diversity of aesthetic, philosophical and social perspectives, The KCA looks to identify and illuminate the most urgent and experimental choreographic practices occurring in the Australian context today.  The KCA public program, with its array of national and international jury members, panellists, guests and workshop leaders, runs concurrently with the performance season, providing a vital context for related and relevant discourse, reflection and debate.  
 
 

KEY DATES:

  • SEMI FINALS: DANCEHOUSE, MELBOURNE, 6 – 10 MARCH 2018
  • FINALS: CARRIAGEWORKS, SYDNEY, 15 – 17 March 2018
 

THE KCA PUBLIC PROGRAM:

The 2018 Public Program will be announced in November 2017

The richly diverse KCA Public Program in now an integral part of KCA. It brings together an array of outstanding thinkers and practitioners from the dance field and the community at large - providing a context to consider the deep, subtle ways in which dance, with its multiplicity of choreographed and embodied practices, connects to the social, the ethical and the political.

The KCA Public Program accompanies the performance seasons and spans four weeks. Dancehouse is extremely committed to enabling accessibility, dialogue, discourse and criticality for the art form, its makers and its audiences. Free events and online content are highlights.

ACCESS ONLINE CONTENT FROM THE 2016 KCA PUBLIC PROGRAM

 

ARTIST BIOS:

Amrita Hepi is a dancer and choreographer. A Bundjulung and Ngapuhi woman, her practice probes at the idea of authenticity, the perpetuation of culture and tradition. An artist who has toured nationally and internationally with a broad following and reach, her work has taken various forms (film, performance, sculpture, text, lecture, participatory installation) but always begins from working with the body as a point of archive, memory and resistance. Amrita trained at the National Aboriginal Islander Skills Development Association (NAISDA) dance college, New South Wales and Alvin Ailey American Dance School, New York.  She has exhibited and performed at Sydney Opera House, Next Wave Festival, the Museum of Contemporary Art, the Australian Centre for Contemporary art, Carriageworks, TEDXSydney, Banff Centre Canada, Art Central Hong Kong, Art Basel Hong Kong, DARK MOFO Tasmania, Underbelly Arts Festival, and Sydney Contemporary among many others.

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Melanie Lane is a Javanese/Australian choreographer and performer. Based in Europe from 2000–2014, Melanie worked with artists such as Arco Renz | Kobalt Works, Club Guy and Roni, and Tino Seghal performing internationally. Since 2007, Melanie has been artistic collaborator to Belgian dance company Kobalt Works | Arco Renz collaborating on projects in Belgium, Norway, Germany and Indonesia. In 2015, Melanie was appointed resident director at Lucy Guerin Inc. Her choreographic work negotiates materiality, artificiality and the representation of the body. Melanie has established a repertory of works performing in international festivals and theatres such as Tanz im August, Uzes Danse Festival, Arts House Melbourne, Taipei Arts Festival, Spring Dance Festival, O Espaco do Tempo, Festival Antigel, Dance Massive and HAU Hebbel am Ufer Berlin among others. She has been artist in residence at Dock 11 Berlin, Tanzwerkstatt Berlin, Lucy Guerin Studios and Schauspielhaus Leipzig. Her collaborative work extends to artists such as musician Clark, choreographer Morgan Belenguer, and visual artists Martin Boettger, Ash Keating and Bridie Lunney. In 2014 Melanie was commissioned to create a new work Spacekraft at Schauspiel Leipzig. Melanie choreographed the 2014, 2015 and 2017 live show for UK electronic musician Clark, performing at Field Day London, Moma PS1 New York, Villette Sonique Paris and Barcelona/Istanbul Sonar Festivals. In 2016 Melanie was commissioned by Chunky Move to create a new work Re-make and premiered Wonderwomen - co-produced by LOFFT and HAU theatres in Germany. In 2017 Melanie is choreographic collaborator for the new video artwork Evanescence conceived by Amos Gebhardt and premiered her new work Nightdance at Arts House in August.

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Bhenji Ra is an interdisciplinary artist whose practice combines dance, choreography, video and installation. Her work is often concerned with the dissection of cultural theory and identity, centralizing her own personal histories as a tool to reframe performance. With an emphasis on occupation and at times collective action, her work plays with the multiplicities of spectacle while offering strategies to resist the colonial gaze and western performance framework. Collaboration is key to her work as she often accesses her own community as both a catalyst to generate theory and material as well as an essential critical voice. Her collaborative video series Ex Nilalang with artist Justin Shoulder, has been exhibited at the 8th Asia Pacific Trienalle at the Gallery of Modern Art, Brisbane, M+ Museum in Hong Kong and The Australian Centre of Moving Image in Melbourne. She recently performed her work NRG in collaboration with Angela Goh in Auto Italia's group show Rogue Agents with the support of the Keir foundation. In 2016 she was awarded the danceweb scholarship in which she participated at the Impulstanz Festival in Vienna under the mentorship of Tino Sehgal. She is currently occupied with being the 'mother' of a young, western Sydney based vogue house named Slé whose work consists of hosting events and 'balls' for the intersections of community and performance.

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Nana Biluš Abaffy is an artist with a background in philosophy and a foreground in experimental performance and dance. Nana takes a maximalist approach to artistic endeavour in her pursuit of understanding through confusion. She wants to know what her body is looking for. Nana believes that there is irreducible variation in the human experience and works towards establishing a space for that difference in search of landscapes where alterities can be envisioned. Nana is also the founding member of a secretive collective that performs in explicitly illicit spaces and enjoys engaging in ChoreoGraphic acts of extreme tree hugging and site specific mixedup reality protest dancing. Nana's work has been supported by the dance boards of the Australian Council for the Arts, Creative Victoria, Ian Potter Cultural Trust, CoPP Cultural Development Fund, FCAC Artist Residency, Bluestone Arts Space and Zagreb Dance Centre. In 2017, Nana is working on commissions from Underbelly Arts Festival and Lucy Guerin Inc. Last year she was supported by the Australian Council to train with choreographers Ivo Dimchev, Trajal Harrell and Mårten Spångberg, playwright Mark Ravenhill, and video artist Tacita Dean. Nana was selected to participate in a director's masterclass with Romeo Castellucci at the 2015 Venice Biennale of Theatre. Nana is currently completing a Master of Arts in Performance Studies for which she has received an Australian Postgraduate Award. She holds a First Class Honours degree in Philosophy and has been awarded a Postgraduate Scholarship in Creative Writing. Nana is a published researcher and has presented her work on ancient tragedy at Royal Central School of Speech and Drama and Oxford University. Nana is a Zagreb born, Melbourne based alien. 

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Luke George, raised in Tasmania and based in Melbourne, creates new choreographic work borne out of experimental processes with collaborating artists. George's work is based in a long-term research into 'relational performance practice' that is rooted in the choreographic, and engages with other art forms. His works EROTIC DANCE (2016), BUNNY (2016), NOT ABOUT FACE (2013), NOW NOW NOW (2010), LIFESIZE (2008) have been performed extensively across Australia and internationally in Paris, Marseille, Toulouse, Berlin, Düsseldorf, Bergen, Sandnes, Hammerfest, Groningen, Tokyo, Yokohama, Beppu, Singapore, Portland and New York City. A graduate of the Victorian College of the Arts (B.A. 1999), George was recipient of Melbourne Fringe Awards (1999, 2013), Asialink Residency (2005), Russell Page Fellowship (2007), Greenroom Award for Best Male Dancer (2011), and commissions: Sydney Opera House (2006), The Keir Foundation (2008), Lucy Guerin Inc (2010), Phantom Limbs (2013), The Chocolate Factory Theatre (N.Y.C. 2014), Phillip Adams Balletlab (2015) and Campbelltown Arts Centre (2016). George's artistic history ranges from socially engaged practices, to contemporary dance works, to collaborating across art forms. He was Co-Artistic Director of Stompin Youth Dance Company in regional Tasmania 2002-2008, creating site-specific works with hundreds of young people and community members - the same company through which he first encountered dance at the age of 15. George has collaborated and performed in numerous dance works by acclaimed Australian and international choreographers, and collaborated across disciplines of theatre, music, visual and live art.

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Lilian Steiner is a Melbourne-based dancer and choreographer whose practice utilises the inherent intelligence of the active body as the primary tool for creating wholly encompassing visual, sonic and kinaesthetic experiences.  Her work embraces the power of ephemerality within energetic exchange through emphasising the presence of weight and density within the sculptural nature of sound, the body's form and light as an extension of the body. Lilian's major choreographic projects include Admission into the Everyday Sublime (Next Wave Festival, 2016), BUNKER (Melbourne Fringe Festival, 2015), Noise Quartet Meditation (Melbourne Fringe Festival, 2014 and Dance Massive 2017), Meditation (Melbourne Now, NGV, 2014) and The Call to Connect – Voyager Recordings (Lucy Guerin Inc.'s Pieces for Small Spaces, 2012).  Noise Quartet Meditation received the 2015 Green Room Award for Concept and Realisation, as well as a nomination for the Shirley McKechnie Award for Choreography.  BUNKER received a Green Room nomination for Design in 2016. As a dancer, Lilian has worked with Australian companies Lucy Guerin Inc. and Phillip Adams' Balletlab across many projects as well as with independent choreographers Melanie Lane, Shelley Lasica, Brooke Stamp, visual artists Brook Andrew, Ash Keating, Mikala Dwyer and Alicia Frankovic, performance art group Public Movement and architect Matthew Bird (Studio Bird).  In 2017 Lilian received both the Helpmann Award and Green Room Award for Best Female Dancer, as well as nominations in 2013 and 2016.

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Prue Lang joined Meryl Tankard's Australian Dance Theatre after studying at the VCA Melbourne. In 1996 she moved to France to join the Choreographic National Centre in Angers, Compagnie Cre-Ange in Paris, as well as creating and facilitating her own independent projects. In 1999 she began an important collaboration with William Forsythe as a leading soloist and choreographer of the Frankfurt Ballett and The Forsythe Company. She created five original works for the company, some of which also toured independently. She is also a leading exponent of Forsythe's improvisation technologies and a researcher on the Motion Bank project. Since 2005 she has been working as an independent choreographer presenting her work in international festivals, theatres and museums throughout the world including Theatre National de Chaillot Paris, HAU 3 Berlin, Tanzplatform Deutschland, Mousonturm Frankfurt, Tanzhaus NRW Düsseldorf, Context Festival Hebbel-am-ufer Berlin, Tanzperformance Koln, STUK Belgium, Festival faits d'hiver Paris, Rencontres choregraphiques internationales de Seine-Saint-Denis, Mains d'oeuvres, Festival temps d'images Paris, Festival Mettre-en-scene Rennes, TATE Modern London, Adelaide International Arts festival, Dancehouse, Gertrude Gallery, Dance Massive Australia. She has been voted Young Choreographer to Watch, Most Innovative Production, Most Outstanding Choreographer and most Outstanding Dancer by Europe's Balletanz's Annual Critics' Survey, awarded in Hybrid Art by the Prix Ars Electronica, and won Green Room awards for Design, Original Choreography and Best Ensemble in Australia. Since 2014 she has been living and working in Melbourne, Australia.

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BRANCH NEBULA (Lee Wilson and Mirabelle Wouters) is one of Australia's most adventurous companies pushing at the boundaries of performance. Working at the nexus between theatre, dance, sport and street-styles, Branch Nebula takes audiences into the extreme creativity of urban landscapes and immerses them in real time experiences. Branch Nebula works with non-conventional performers to collaboratively devise work that defies categorization. They interrogate the audience experience and explore contemporary culture as a means of creating access and speaking to a broad audience. They work with street-style artists to create new visions for engaging with BMX, skating, parkour, tricking, and contemporary dance. Recently Branch Nebula toured their work Snake Sessions around six skateparks in regional Australia, curated Swarm for Campbelltown Art Centre's live art program, and developed Foodfight with artist Diego Bonetto for the MCA's C3West. They toured a collaboration with Wade Marynowsky, The Robot Opera, to Taiwan. Other productions include Artwork, Whelping Box, and Concrete And Bone Sessions.

 

HOW IT WORKS:

To enter, make a video (maximum 5 minutes) outlining a new choreographic idea. Each submitted application will be assessed by a jury of national and international industry peers. Eight artists will be commissioned to develop a work of up to 20-minutes over a four month period. Each artist will receive a commissioning fee, proportionate to the scale of the work, for development and production costs. They will also receive 100 hours of free rehearsal space in the city or region in which they reside. 

The eight commissioned works will be presented at Dancehouse, Melbourne. The KCA jury will then select four works to be presented at Carriageworks, Sydney. The 2018 Keir Choreographic Award recipient will receive $30,000 and Sydney audiences will vote for the recipient of the $10,000 Keir Choreographic Audience Award.

 

READ DEBORAH JOWITT'S REVIEW OF 2016 KCA

 

2016 KEIR CHOREOGRAPHIC AWARD TRAILER:

READ MORE ABOUT THE 2016 EDITION

 

FOR MORE INFORMATION

READ THE 2018 MEDIA RELEASE #1
READ THE 2018 MEDIA RELEASE #2

 

This project has been assisted by the Australian Government through the Australia Council for the Arts, its arts funding and advisory body. 

 

Image: Rebecca Jensen, semi-finalist of the 2016 Award, photographed by Gregory Lorenzutti for Dancehouse