In Your Blood Director's Notes
David McMicken and Tim Newth
"The seeds of this work were planted four years ago with an idea of exploring our local Australian identity as seen through generational evolution. Drawing together the creative team began when we recognised that two of our peers, (long term company collaborators, and strong community cultural drivers), Putu and Chandrika, both had young adult sons that danced. Discussions about what passes on from one generation to another grew. As the talks expanded, the emergence of sport and the passion for it, and how it often crosses generations, seeped in.
Putting our creative team together is always a joy and draws on our connections and relationships with the community. Kelly Beneforti, (Tracks’ Animateur and one of Darwin’s most exquisite dancers) has for many years been dancing with Putu’s Tunas Mekar Balinese dance ensemble, and was the best person to take lead with Putu of the Balinese/Football section. Other core choreographers, such as Chandrika, Bryn, Venaska, and Madeleine, have danced in other Tracks shows as well as participating in our choreographic development course.
Venaska has a background in the classical form of Bharatanatyam and has performed in a past Tracks collaboration with Putu. Also, having danced with Chandrika’s Multicultural Academy, she was a clear choice. Paring Venaska with Madeleine, who has recently studied Bollywood dancing in Mumbai, seemed the clear partnership to lead the Bollywood style Finale.
Madeleine and Bryn worked together this year as two of our Tracktivators. We knew Bryn as a versatile dancer, but discovered that she had a delightful sense of characterisation. Her ability to work with a broad range of people made her an obvious choice for our Captain of the Cricket team, formed predominantly with people from a non-dance background.
As with most Tracks Darwin Festival shows, we start with a big and not-fully formed concept that involves many collaborators, across many fields. Piece by piece the jigsaw is developed and refined. It is usually well into working with the community groups and core artists that the pieces begin to fuse. This moment keeps us on our toes as we sew together the action, design, compositions, and narrative of the work. Working with James this year with his rich musical, cultural and sporting passions has created a harmonising and dynamic soundtrack. And Chris Kluge’s lighting abilities enhances the magic of our site. Creating an outdoor theatre venue from nothing is a credit to our design and production staff.
Thanks to all the creative, production, and operational team, and cast for coming on board for yet another “it could only happen in Darwin” show. We hope you enjoy the ride, loving the people and place of Darwin as much as we do."