Delve into the fanciful and illusionary worlds of two extraordinary choreographers, STEPHANIE LAKE and ROSS MCCORMACK as they fall down the rabbit hole of imagination and fill in the blanks.

IF______WAS______ is both an investigation into choreographic practice and a sensory representation of each artist’s personal library of lived experience generated in response to a strict framework of equal limitations.

Artistic Director, KYLE PAGE set the challenge for each artist to select sound from the one sound score, create costumes from one pattern, utilise lighting from one design and work to a set duration. It is within these parameters that IF______WAS______ comes to life.

Audiences are invited to experience this double bill that celebrates our differences and questions what is unique to us.

IF______WAS______is a bold new work, raw, pared back, alive.

“A gripping visceral sixty minute experience and one not to be missed by lovers of contemporary dance.” — Arts Hub, of STEPHANIE LAKE.

About the artists

STEPHANIE LAKE is a multi award-winning Australian choreographer, dancer and director of STEPHANIE LAKE COMPANY. Her major works including Double Blind, DUAL, A Small Prometheus, AORTA and Mix Tape have been presented by Melbourne International Arts Festival, Sydney Festival, Dance Massive, Arts House, Sydney Opera House, Theatre National de Chaillot (Paris), Theater im Pfalzbau (Germany), Dublin Dance Festival, Tramway (Glasgow), Singapore and Aarhus Festival (Denmark) among others. In 2014 Stephanie was awarded both the Helpmann Award ( A Small Prometheus ) and Australian Dance Award (AORTA) for Outstanding Choreography.

Stephanie has been commissioned by Sydney Dance Company, Chunky Move, Tasdance, Stompin, Frontier Danceland (Singapore), Sydney Symphony and the Victorian College of the Arts. She collaborates across theatre, film and TV, visual art and music video and has directed several large-scale public works involving over 1000 participants. Her performance career spans fifteen years, touring and dancing extensively with Gideon Obarzanek’s Chunky Move and Lucy Guerin Inc as well as with choreographers Antony Hamilton & Byron Perry and Anouk Van Dijk. She was a founding performer in Phillip Adams’ BalletLab. The Stephanie Lake Company was established in 2014.

ROSS MCCORMACK graduated from the New Zealand School of Dance in 2001 and went on to work with Douglas Wright Dance Company and the Royal New Zealand Ballet. In 2003, MCCORMACK joined Australian Dance Theatre where he worked closely with Garry Stewart on the creation of several works which toured the US and Europe. In 2005, MCCORMACK won the Sir Robert Helpman Award for his performance in the work Held, a collaboration between Australian Dance Theatre and New York Dance Photographer Louis Greenfield. From 2005 MCCORMACK has worked for Alain Platel at les ballets C de la B. He performed in vsprs (2006 direction Alain Platel), Patchagonia (2007 direction Lisi Estaras) and Out of Context - for Pina (2010 direction Alain Platel). In 2012 MCCORMACK joined Australia’s Chunky Move, touring Connected to the United States. In 2013 MCCORMACK joined Melbourne based dance company Lucy Guerin and Dancers to perform in Untrained touring America UK and Europe.Ross has been commissioned to choreograph several short works for New Zealand and Australian companies: (sex) (2012) and Footnote Dance; SUM- (2011) New Zealand School of Dance; and Nga hau e wha: Papa Nuku (2011), Okareka Dance Company.

KYLE PAGE began his professional career at DANCENORTH in 2004 and in 2014 was appointed Artistic Director of the company. Over the last 11 years he has performed in 17 countries around the world. PAGE has collaborated with internationally renowned choreographers including Meryl Tankard, Garry Stewart, Lucy Guerin, Gavin Webber, Ikuyo Kuroda, Antony Hamilton, Jo Stone and Paulo Castro, Larissa McGowan and Stephanie Lake. In 2013 PAGE was offered an Asialink residency and spent three months in Varanasi, India, in the same year he was selected as a finalist in the Australian Arts in Asia Award. He was recently invited to take part in the prestigious Arctic Circle Residency with his wife and long-time collaborator, Amber Haines. Research into cognitive processes and neuroscience regularly inform PAGE’s creative developments and he is currently working with mentor Scott de la Hunta, exploring the dance / science nexus. In 2015, PAGE was awarded a position in the coveted AIM30 and was named one of North Queensland’s 50 most influential people.

AMBER HAINES. In 2006 AMBER HAINES attained a Bachelor of Dance from the Victorian College of the Arts graduating with the Mary Orloff Prize for Most Outstanding Dancer. HAINES has worked with many of Australia’s most acclaimed choreographers including Garry Stewart, Gideon Obarzanek (Chunky Move), Lucy Guerin, Stephanie Lake and Tracie Mitchell. She spent 3 1/2 years working full time with Australian Dance Theatre and has performed throughout Australia, Europe, United Kingdom, North, South and Central America, India and Japan. HAINES has choreographed work for DANCENORTH (_Syncing Feeling, Spectra - _Co-choreographed with Kyle Page), Lucy Guerin’s Pieces for Small Spaces, Australian Dance Theatre’s Rough Draft and Next Wave Festival. In 2013/14 HAINES was granted a 3 month Asialink residency in Varanasi, India and in 2015 participated in the prestigious Arctic Circle Residency sailing on a barquentine tall ship in Svalbard, Norway. In 2015, HAINES was nominated for an Australian Dance Award for her performance in Garry Stewart’s Proximity and is currently Artistic Assistant/Rehearsal Director of DANCENORTH.

HARRISON HALL undertook his dance training at the Victorian College of the Arts Secondary School, moving on to full time training at the Australian Ballet School, graduating in 2011. Throughout this time he performed in several seasons with the Australian Ballet Company including Peggy and Don Quixote. Since graduating, HALL has performed and collaborated with various contemporary artists and companies including Yumi Umuimare and Theatre Gumbo (Japan), Rennie McDougall, Tony Yap, Jo Lloyd, La Fura Dels Baus (Spain) the Shanghai Theatre Academy (China) and Lucy Guerin Inc.

In 2012 HALL received the Australia Council for the Arts Start Grant, supporting training abroad with Batsheva Dance Company in the Middle East. He then in 2014 was awarded an Ian Potter Cultural Trust Grant to work and perform with the renowned theatre company, La Fura Dels Baus (Spain) on their production of White Snake in Shanghai, China. Recently after a successful season at the Melaka Arts and Performance Festival (Malaysia), HALL performed his solo work Melekh at both the Melbourne and Sydney Short+Sweet Festivals, receiving the award for “Most Outstanding Male Performance”.

JENNI LARGE has performed and toured with companies and independently throughout Australia. She graduated from WAAPA in 2010 receiving the Hawaiian Award for most outstanding dancer. She has since danced with Leigh Warren & Dancers in the Phillip Glass Trilogy, with Tasdance performing and touring works by Anton, Francis Rings, Larissa McGowan, Anna Smith, Marnie Palomares, Byron Perry and Tanja Liedtke. LARGE has also collaborated with Sue Peacock (Reflect), Aimee Smith (Wintering and Borderline), Isabella Stone (Mouseprint), Ashley McLellan (Pearl), Lisa Wilson, Prying Eye Productions, Cadi McCarthy and Dean Walsh. LARGE is a founding member of the Dance Makers Collective based in Sydney with whom she choreographed The Ultimate Human Seduction.

ASHLEY MCLELLAN graduated from the West Australian Academy of Performing Arts, with an Advanced Diploma of Performing Arts (Dance) in 2010, where she received the Dance Theatre of WA Award 2008, Leinster Award for Dance 2008, and the Hawaiian Award 2010. During and after her training, MCLELLAN spent four years performing with the West Australian Ballet, under the directorship of Ivan Cavallari as a member of the corps des ballet. Working as a freelance contemporary dancer, MCLELLAN has worked with artists such as Graeme Murphy, Marcia Haydee, Youri Vamos, Petr Zuska, Garry Stewart, Tony Yap, Melanie Lane, Gregory Lorenzutti, and Shaun Parker to name a few. MCLELLAN received the award for, ‘Outstanding Performance by a Female’ in Melbourne’s Short and Sweet Festival, for her self-choreographed solo, Other and was invited to create her short work, Pearl for Lucy Guerin Inc’s Pieces for Small Spaces. In 2014 MCLELLAN was a successful recipient of the Australia Council’s ArtStart Grant, where she participated and performed in dance festivals across Europe and Asia.

MASON KELLY is originally from Geelong, Victoria, he was offered a scholarship to The Victorian College of the Arts Secondary School in Melbourne where he trained for three years. In 2013 he commenced full-time training as a contemporary major at The New Zealand School of Dance. In 2014 he graduated with a Certificate in Dance Performance. During his time at NZSD Mason performed in the World of Wearable Arts and works by Nils Christe, Malia Johnston and Michael Parmenter. KELLY also performed in NZSD’s choreographic season of ’The Residents’ directed by Victoria Colombus which then toured to Tempo Dance Festival Auckland.

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