Welcome to the DANscienCE Festival – an interactive conversation exploring the nexus of dance and science involving participants from across Australia and the world.
DANscienCE 1 ran at Canberra's CSIRO Discovery Centre between 10 and 18 August 2013, bringing together Australian dance artists and scientists in an exploratory celebration of two fields of excellence.
DANscienCE grew out of a residency Liz Lea held with CSIRO Discovery Centre in Canberra. CSIRO (Australia's Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation) in Canberra is the home to a number of significant national collections and while Liz Lea would eventually work with the curators of the Australian National Wildlife Collection on ideas that would become the performance piece Magnificus Magnificus (Street Theatre, Canberra, November 2013), she found the conversations and research that the residency began too wide-ranging to be contained into a single performance or outcome.
Along with then CSIRO Discovery Centre Director Cris Kennedy, Lea curated a Festival to help tease out some of the more apparent intellectual parallels between dance and the sciences - cognitive thinking, psychology, stresses on the human body and the ageing body, the environment. What we found was that rather like the Large Hadron Collider, weird and wonderful things happened when you smashed dance and science together, and you could never predict the outcome. Read our 2013 program.
DANscienCE 2015 continued the conversation at Queensland University of Technology (QUT) in Brisbane, AUSTRALIA. Read the 2015 program.
Watch this space for an upcoming announcement about the 2018 program to be held in Sydney Australia 1st & 2nd June 2018.
A performer and choreographer Liz Lea trained at London Contemporary Dance School and Akademi in London and Darpana Academy in India. Based between London and Sydney for many years she is now based in Canberra as Artistic Director of Liz Lea Productions and Canberra Dance Theatre.
In 2015 Liz begins work on her new one woman show exploring dance and health and a new company work in collaboration with scientists at Mount Stromlo and the Griffyn Ensemble. She is co-directing DANscienCE with Professor Gene Moyle and co-directing the launch of ACT National Science Week at the National Library of Australia with Dr Graham Walker. She is also booking a tour of Europe for Canberra Dance Theatre's GOLD over 55 company. In 2014 Liz presented work about the Freedom fighter Ahmed Kathrada with Sandy Evans and Bobby Singh. As a freelancer she choreographed for Griffyn Ensemble and ANU School of Music.
Previous works include 120 Birds inspired by Anna Pavlova, InFlight, Magnificus Magnificus with Tammi Gissell and her children's science show Flying Facts. In 2011 Liz created works on Her work with QL2 Centre for Youth Dance was awarded a 2011 Australian Dance Award for the creation of Hard Yards.
International commissions include Maya Dance Theatre and La Salle College for the Arts, Singapore; Darpana company, India; Flatfoot Dance Company and KZN Dancelink, South Africa, Royal Opera House, London.
As a dancer Liz has worked for the Royal Opera House, Ranjabati Sircar, Imlata, Sankalpam, English National Opera and English Bach Festival as a Baroque specialist. Liz’s research into the early modern dance movement and non Asian dance pioneers inspired by India such as Anna Pavlova and Ruth St Denis have led to the forthcoming documentary ‘Dance Detective’, filmed in India. She one of very few artists who has reinterpreted the early 1906 solos of Ruth St Denis, inspired by India.
Associate Professor Gene Moyle has worked across a dynamic mix of fields including the performing arts, elite sport and the corporate sectors. A graduate from the Australian Ballet School, QUT Dance and after having danced with the Australian Ballet Dancers Company and Queensland Ballet, Gene pursued further studies in psychology completing University degrees including a Masters and Doctorate in Sport and Exercise Psychology.
Gene has focused upon the application of performance psychology and performance enhancement, particularly within the performing arts and elite sport domains. Her involvement in dance has included being a Lecturer in Performance Psychology at QUT Creative Industries from 2001 to-date, a Career Development Advisor for the SCOPE and SCOPE for Artists Programs, a regular contributor to DANCE Australia magazine, the Head of Student Health & Welfare at the Australian Ballet School, in addition to consulting, servicing and providing workshops to various dance schools, associations, and individual dance students and professionals.
She has significant experience in working with and leading multidisciplinary teams within high performance settings, and possesses specific expertise in the area of career development and transition. Gene has supported a number of Olympic Winter sports programs across three Olympic cycles (Torino, Vancouver, Sochi), and has worked extensively within the elite sporting system at both State and National level.
Gene has worked in Senior Executive and Management roles across a range of industries, including having held multiple positions on Boards and Advisory Committees. She is currently a Board Member of the Queensland Ballet, Chair of the Tertiary Dance Council of Australia, a National Executive Committee Member of the Australian Society for Performing Arts Healthcare, a Performance Health Advisory Panel member for the Queensland Academy of Sport, an Industry Mentor and Panel Assessor for Arts Queensland, and the Newsletter Editor for the International Association of Dance Medicine and Science.
She joined QUT Creative Industries faculty in the role as Head of Discipline – Dance in November 2012. More here.