where the heart is
by Natalie Weir with music by John Rodgers
Take a step into the past as a young man returns to his childhood home and rediscovers the memories he has long forgotten.
Fresh from winning two Helpmann Awards in 2011 for where the heart is
(Best Ballet or Dance Work and Best Choreography in a Dance or Physical Theatre Production), Expressions Dance Company
brings its signature production back to QPAC by popular demand.
Featuring lyrics inspired by David Malouf's 12 Edmondstone Street
, this heart-warming story unfolds with the six EDC dancers and three live musicians portraying different family members and the complexities of any family unit - through such moments as trial, happiness, grief, love, sharing, loss.
Set against the iconic remnants of an old Queenslander, this evocative piece of dance theatre is highly regarded for its strong story telling, exquisite choreography, stunning stage design, emotionally resonant live music and dynamic, physical dance.
'an engaging and powerful contemporary dance work that confidently bonds the ties between theatre and dance.' Australian Stage
Live music performed by Pearly Black: Vocalist, Marc Hannaford: Pianist, Christa Powell: Strings.
I have Gene Kelly and Fred Astaire to thank as they inspired me to become a dancer. Gymnastics, tap, jazz and singing led into classical and contemporary dance. This art form has led me round the world performing in such p laces as USA, Finland, Korea, China as well as closer to home: Broome, Kalgoorlie, and my favourite - Margaret River in WA. Outside of work I'm a highly enthusiastic but moderate tennis player, I swim a lot of laps for relaxation and you are most likely to spot me at Doomben Racecourse as I love thoroughbreds and actually have shares in horses - although no 'Black Caviars' at this stage! I very much look forward to performing the dark and complex character of The Father in where the heart is, as I love trying to morph into different roles and take the audience on a journey.
"The more I learn, the more I realise I don't know" (Einstein). This quote sums up my experience with most things in life, in and outside of dance. I love cooking, collecting perfume samples, the way a cat brushes past your ankles, rainy days, teapots and the beach. I grew up in an untouched part of coastline in rural NSW. The rather large May family spent summers on the beach and I have strong memories at my grandmother's house near the water. Playing this role in where the heart is feels like coming home for me. As the fi rst signature work with Natalie it set the tone and quality of her work to come for EDC. This role is therefore very special to me and although it's a long time since I performed The Grandmother, she has found a resting place in my body and in my bones, just laying dormant ready to be awoken.
'Happiness was once our greatest love. I held him close, then I lost him to his own despair and he walked alone without us'. My heart lies with my family and friends. I am a dabbler of creative ideas and a procrastinator of many! I've too many books for my bookshelf and chocolate will always be my fi rst choice. I am in my 12th year as a professional dancer and I will always love those unexpected moments that take you by surprise. There are so many highlights to this journey that can occur in the studio, on the stage or when you're on an international tour standing in front of the Arc de Triomphe and you wonder how you got there! My favourite role with EDC is playing the role of The Mother in where the heart is. It's wonderful to revisit this engaging, moving work to give it new life and await the unexpected.
The Young Man/The Brother
I grew up on a walnut farm on the Murray River in a small town called Rutherglen - a big winery region. I started my career in dance in New Zealand working for Black Grace Dance Company. One of my highlights was performing with Black Grace in my own country at WOMADelaide in front of thousands of people. My favourite thing about dancing has been the opportunity to tour to some of the most amazing places in the world. where the heart is is a beautifully crafted work - as a performer it has all the challenges you want. The movement is demanding and your character asks a lot of you. This process has been a lot of fun, I have thoroughly enjoyed working alongside Natalie and the EDC team to restage this piece.
I grew up on the Kapiti Coast in New Zealand, a place I love and visit often. Since moving to Australia I have found a happy home here in Brisbane and with EDC. I'm in my fifth year with EDC and have played a number of different roles in Natalie's pieces. Playing 'Juliet (Act 2)' in R&J was the most challenging role, but also the most enjoyable. It was physically and emotionally demanding, and I loved the beautiful music and movement. Re-mounting where the heart is has been an absolute joy. Hearing the music, seeing the set and re-learning the movement brought back many happy memories! Travelling nationally and internationally is a great part of working for EDC - to see and experience new cultures and places. Rehearsing and performing in Basel (Switzerland) last year was amazing - the people, the scenery, the chocolate (!!), oh I loved it all!
The Young Man/ The Brother
I have been fortunate enough to dance for 11 years. There have been many highlights throughout that time including travelling, meeting new people and opportunities to grow and develop as a dancer. I love many aspects of being a dancer, but my favourite is the art of storytelling - being able to convey ideas and emotions through movement. I am very grateful to be performing in where the heart is as The Young Man and as The Brother. Performing these roles has defi nitely been one of the major highlights during my time with EDC and throughout my career. I would describe the roles as nostalgic, conflicted, remorseful and at times, tormented. As for my own heart, it resides with my family and the people I love.
Pearly Black: Vocalist
Pearly Black is a singer of unusual breadth and versatility. She has been performing for over 20 years in many genres including rock, gospel, jazz, Flamenco and other world music. Works with John Rodgers include The Dream Catchers (Queensland Music Festival 2007) and his recorded work, The Uncaring Wind (2010). Her cabaret and theatrical outings include Women In Voice (QPAC 2004 and 2008), the Matilda Award winning cabaret Tom Waits For No Man (2008-10). Pearly currently resides in Melbourne where she performs, records and teaches voice. A new solo album is currently in production and will be ready for release by the end of 2012.
Marc Hannaford: Pianist
Marc has played on a number of recordings, including his 2007 debut album The Garden
of Forking Paths (Extreme), The Antripodean Collective's release Funcall 2008 (Extreme) and his solo piano album, Polar released 2009 (Extreme). He is part of a trio with Allan Browne and Sam Anning that released its debut album, Homage (Jazzhead) mid-2009. He has performed with Tim Berne (USA), Wycliffe Gordon (USA) and Rex Richardson (USA) as well as saxophonists Dale Barlow, Jamie Oehlers and Julien Wilson, trumpeters Miroslav Bukovsky, Scott Tinkler and Eugene Ball, plus John Rodgers, Ken Edie, Simon Barker, Ronny Ferella and Allan Browne. He has also appeared in ensembles including Scott Tinkler Quartet, Bennett's Lane Big Band, Jamie Oehlers / Marc Hannaford Monk Project, Eugene Ball's Messiaen Ensemble, The David Rex Quartet and the multi-media ensemble The Maximalists.
Christa Powell: Strings
Christa studied in London with Emmanuel Hurwitz, (classical violinist with the heart and soul of a gypsy) and at the University of Queensland and the Queensland Conservatorium of Music, obtaining her Master of Music with Distinction in 1996 studying with Carmel Kaine. She has worked and performed with artists such as Terry Riley, Brodsky Quartet, Geoffrey Rush, Bille Brown, Katie Noonan, Kate Miller-Heidke, William Barton and the Kransky Sisters. Christa's passion has always been chamber music, playing music with friends. She is founding member of acclaimed Australian ensemble Topology, having performed throughout Australia, and overseas in Canada, the US, the Netherlands, Belgium, Singapore and Indonesia. Her discography consists of nine CD's of original Australian and international compositions as well as featuring on numerous ABC recordings and live broadcasts. 2012 will see Christa tour to India and the Torres Strait as well as returning to Jakarta.
EDC provides extensive Teacher Resource Packs to support your booking to where the heart is
. Resource Packs are sent out to teachers once a booking is finalised and consists of information and classroom resources to assist teachers and students to become engaged and familiar with piece.View the where the heart is Teacher's Notes
Expressions Dance Company and QPAC