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VIDEO: A reflection on self danced to perfection

DYNAMIC: Garry Stewart's Be Your Self Redux, performed by the Australian Dance Theatre.
DYNAMIC: Garry Stewart's Be Your Self Redux, performed by the Australian Dance Theatre. Chris Herzfeld

BE Your Self Redux is a 10-year-old piece devised originally by choreographer Garry Stewart and Australian Dance Theatre.

Over the year, the successful piece with eight dancers and an actor has been adjust and re-organised by Stewart into his redux (re-done) version.

Mr Stewart said the piece is about the nature of the self.

"That was the initial investigation but it is a broad one, and the work is highly physical, so it is an investigation about: are we the body?" he said.

"The dancers are moving to a cartoonish score with sounds of bones cracking, the sound of the gut and heartbeats, the internal systems of the body.

"There is also an actor on stage delivering very complex text about the physiology of the body.

"What's interesting about that is that (the actor) is explaining what the dancer is doing, which seems really simple, but the physiological process of that dance is quite complex so it gives quite a bit of humour to the piece by explaining how complex it is doing even the most simple things.

DYNAMIC: Garry Stewart's Be Your Self Redux, performed by the Australian Dance Theatre.
DYNAMIC: Garry Stewart's Be Your Self Redux, performed by the Australian Dance Theatre. CHRIS HERZFELD

"Then the work moves into a more emotional and psychological place, but there is a lot of humour in it and different textures."

Mr Stewart said the physical abilities of the dancers on stage for this piece go beyond a regular contemporary dancer's skills.

"The dancers at ADT are highly physical, way beyond what normal contemporary dancers can do, and they train in contemporary dance, ballet, yoga, and also very intensively in breakdance and gymnastics," he said.

DYNAMIC: Garry Stewart's Be Your Self Redux, performed by the Australian Dance Theatre.
DYNAMIC: Garry Stewart's Be Your Self Redux, performed by the Australian Dance Theatre.

"They don't necessarily come out on stage doing breakdance or gymnastics, but they flavour the way that they move, it gives them more possibilities and greater speed."

One of the most iconic images of the work is the fact that dancers wear outfits with images printed of themselves in their underwear.

According to Mr Stewart the dancers are "wearing themselves".

DYNAMIC: Garry Stewart's Be Your Self Redux, performed by the Australian Dance Theatre.
DYNAMIC: Garry Stewart's Be Your Self Redux, performed by the Australian Dance Theatre. Chris Herzfeld

"From their hips down they are wearing themselves, as the images in their outfits and photos of the dancer's bodies; it's an interesting juxtaposition."

  • At Lismore City Hall on Friday, August 18, at 7.30pm and and Saturday, August 19, 2.30pm and 7.30pm. Visit lismorecityhall.com.au.
DYNAMIC: Garry Stewart's Be Your Self Redux, performed by the Australian Dance Theatre.
DYNAMIC: Garry Stewart's Be Your Self Redux, performed by the Australian Dance Theatre. NDARU_085697904866

Topics:  australian dance theatre dance lismore lismore city hall norpa northern rivers entertainment theatre whatson


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