In this Q&A, Pre-Professional Year Course Director Linda Gamblin discusses the importance of contemporary dance and what she looks for when auditioning students.
Why are you so passionate about contemporary dance?
I believe we need contemporary art to communicate and express ideas, hopes and frustrations, and to bring about questioning. Contemporary dance as an art form allows us to communicate and explore these societal ideas in unique and stimulating ways. It evokes one’s own reactions to these subjects and starts us questioning our views and beliefs. Contemporary dance expands our limiting boundaries we put on ourselves to fit in within our world. I can’t imagine a world without contemporary dance.
Why did Sydney Dance Company decide to have a pre-professional program?
It became evident that we needed to start offering aspiring professional contemporary dancers the full scope of practices that are required to explore a variety of choreographic processes.
Under the direction of Sydney Dance Company’s Artistic Director Rafael Bonachela, we were able to develop a course with a direct link to the requirements of a professional dancer ready to collaborate in any creative environment. We wanted to find the young aspiring professionals who could tell their stories and be the next generation of socially astute contemporary dance artists. Offering a course alongside our internationally acclaimed professional dance company allows for tremendous networking opportunities and collaboration with many experienced artists.
What is unique about training at Sydney Dance Company’s Pre-Professional Year?
Our focus is to develop our technique and artistry, mentally, physically and emotionally, by working with a variety of up to 35 national and international choreographers and guest artists each year.
Choreographers work with the pre-professional dancers between one and three weeks full-time, offering their experience in a collaborative learning environment. By mentoring each student through this process, high levels of maturity and professionalism are cultivated.
What do you look for when auditioning future students?
We are looking for a competent dancer that gives us a glimpse that they are willing and able to transform technically and artistically into a forward-thinking contemporary artist. They will indeed need an open mind to start asking important questions that will allow them to dance and move deliberately with precision and presence.
This Q&A was originally published on the Dance Informa website.
Applications are now open for our Pre-Professional Year 2018. Our Pre-Professional Year is proudly supported by Lexus Australia.