#3: Poppy (1978)


22 February 2019

Photographer Branco Gaica has shot thousands of photographs of Sydney Dance Company.

“I developed all those photos by hand, so when I look at the images, I reimagine the night. One I’ve still got on my wall at home is Kim Walker in After Venice: he has a towel wrapped around him, just looking like a god. There’s a scene in ‘After Venice’ where Paul Mercurio has to basically shove Kim out of the way, but Graeme Murphy choreographed it as a beautiful balletic move. Shooting dance was hard in those days – trying to capture fast movement in low light, trying to anticipate the moment, making sure you had enough film – but Graeme served up images on a plate.”

Original program cover featuring Jennifer Barry and Andris Toppe, 1978

Did you know? Poppy was Graeme Murphy’s first full-length work for Sydney Dance Company. It premiered at Sydney Theatre Royal on 12 April 1978.

A future cast of Poppy in 1991 included choreographer and former Company dancer Gideon Obarzanek. You can catch Gideon’s new work Us 50 later this year, featuring 50 performers made up of past dancers that have graced our stage, current Company dancers, and members of our community.

Original Poster, 1978

Top image from Poppy featuring Graeme Murphy, 1978

Follow #SDC50Years in 2019 on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter to revisit some of our highlights and greatest moments of dance over the past 50 years and share your favourite memories of Sydney Dance Company using #SDC50Years.

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