26 February — 27 August 2016


Sydney Dance Company opens 2016 with Countermove — an exhilarating double bill that will intrigue, move and entertain you.

Rafael Bonachela’s world premiere, Lux Tenebris explores light and darkness with fiercely physical movement and deep, electronic beats by composer Nick Wales (long-term collaborator of Sarah Blasko).

While Alexander Ekman’s Cacti is a brilliantly conceived, laugh-out-loud funny piece that dares to poke fun at contemporary dance. Featuring a string quartet live on stage, Ekman’s witty and energetic choreography returns to Sydney having left a global trail of rapturous reviews.

“Forget everything you think you know about contemporary dance” (Drum Media). Don’t miss CounterMove in its limited Australian season.

★★★★ Utterly mesmerising” – The Guardian

★★★★½ A winning combination” – Limelight Magazine

“★★★★ Dance can be fun”Sydney Morning Herald

Follow #SDCCounterMove @SydneyDanceCo on FacebookInstagram and Twitter.

Duration: 90 mins including a 20 min interval

WARNING: Lux Tenebris contains bright flashing lights

Lux Tenebris is a coproduction of the Dresden Frankfurt Dance Company and Sydney Dance Company, supported by the Nelson Meers Foundation and Sydney Dance Company Commissioning Fund. 


Dates and Times


Rafael Bonachela’s Lux Tenebris will be performing in Germany on the following dates:

Bockenheimer Depot, Frankfurt
September 8,  9, 11, 14 and 19
Festspielhaus Hellgrau, Dresden
Sept 29,  30, October 1, 3, 6, 10

17 – 18 June: Illawarra Performing Arts Centre, Wollongong
22 June: Orange Civic Theatre
25 June: Newcastle Civic Theatre
29 June: GlasshousePort Macquarie
20 August: Bathurst Memorial Entertainment Centre
24 August: Griffith Regional Theatre
27 August: Dubbo Regional Theatre

2 July: 
Pilbeam Theatre, Rockhampton
6 July: Gladstone Entertainment Centre
9 – 10 July: Centre of Contemporary Arts, Cairns
15 – 16 July: The Arts Centre, Gold Coast

29 July:
 Darwin Entertainment Centre

3 August:
 Queens Park Theatre, Geraldton
6 August: Mandurah Performing Arts Centre
9 August: Albany Entertainment Centre
13 August: Bunbury Entertainment Centre


Choreography and Costumes: Alexander Ekman
Stage Design: Alexander Ekman and Thomas Visser
Lighting Design: Thomas Visser
Lyrics: Spenser Theberge

Lux Tenebris
Choreography: Rafael Bonachela
Nick Wales
Lighting Design: Benjamin Cisterne

Media & Audience

★★★★ Utterly mesmerising” The Guardian

★★★★★ The dancing is astonishing!” – ArtsHub

★★★★½ A winning combination that, on the one hand provokes and entertains, and on the other confronts and moves its audience in a dazzling evening of dance.” – Limelight Magazine

★★★★ A new work extends the dancers’ flexibility and boldness, while the return of a favourite reminds us that dance can be fun. Both engage the dancers’ feisty attack, admirable stamina and formidable technique.” – Sydney Morning Herald

“It’s the perfect show to take your dance-sceptical friend to.” – Time Out Sydney

“Wickedly witty, brilliantly danced and hugely entertaining” – Arts Review

Cacti is a delight: witty, effervescent, playful, surreal and joyously physical.” – The Australian

…infectious playful energy and absolutely incisive wit.” – Time Out Sydney

★★★★ CounterMove is full-bodied dance, swinging across light and shade, humour and gravitas. A satisfying and well produced combination of two very different offerings.”  Herald Sun

Hilarious and poignant”  The Age

Blindingly brilliant” –

Cacti had me laughing until tears ran down my face… Light hearted yet choreographically brilliant.” – Dance Australia

“Forget everything you think you know about contemporary dance.” – Drum Media

Audience Feedback

Massive congratulations to the whole cast, stunning dancers with so much power, grace and heart. Haven’t seen work that clean in a long time. Thanks for the inspiration SDC. – Benjamin Cure, Instagram

I am so happy that I (randomly) bought a ticket to last night’s performance! It was absolutely exhilarating! – Densie Devine, Instagram

Wonderful, wonderful show! Cacti was one of the most entertaining productions I have ever seen, and Lux Tenebris was mesmerising. – Valerie Young, Facebook

Saw this in Canberra last night. It was fabulous. The dancers timing was perfect, highlighting the clever choreography. A really entertaining piece. – Kaye Uebel, Facebook

The bill was excellently structured, with the irreverence of Cacti, balanced with the more serious but equally engaging mood of ‘Lux Tenebris’. – Audience Survey Feedback

It’s a show not to be missed!!! Immense energy, technical choreography, outstanding perfectionist performance by the dancers, music touching you from top to toes … Inspiring indeed!! – Vika Goodlife, Facebook

What a brilliant double Bill. The production is cutting edge dance meets art with fabulous lighting and staging! The choreography is stunning showing the style and form Bonachela has brought to the company. It is so exciting to see it from the early days with Graeme Murphy and how it has evolved. Cutting edge contemporary…Go now and support our great Sydney Dance Company! – Michael Harris, Facebook

Brilliant, funny and mesmerising!! – Julie Pennell Anderson, Facebook

I took my girls to see this last night. Just amazing. WOW. We loved it – Liz Dadd, Facebook

Blown away by @sydneydanceco first performance of the year ‘CounterMove’ – @ThisIslandLife

@sydneydanceco ‘CounterMove’ is a brilliant, breathtaking new program. Utter collaborative genius. GO SEE IT! – @JosefBrown