Michael Hennessy

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[I was in the Sydney Dance Company for 9 years … and then Head of Dance at the Lismore Conservatorium, when they used to offer dance…]      Having seen [Sprung!!] in performance for the first time [in 2013]… what stood out for me was … Tara as a dancer, I was really taken by her energy,.. her persona, she had a real presence …

I came on as a guest Artist in 2013 with a work about … me being an older male dancer working with a younger female dancer… Initially I thought, can this possibly work? [But]… once I read the [poem], it gave me a context… an older guy down on his luck, .. he saw Tara being upset, and could tell that she was a dancer, my character also had danced at some point in his life… by way of engaging with her he performed a few steps.. Tara joined my steps, I showed her a phrase, we were interacting and dialoguing through dance… I was really taken by how quickly she could adapt- she came up with [her ideas] on the spot.. the whole interaction [was equally responsive]… it was truly integrated in that sense.

Ive been working privately with Max for a while now … I regard him as a colleague … Our duet is co-choreographed- its been a lot of fun to create [the cowboy] work.. for two guys, to showcase two males working together.  Max is always dancing and he brings new work to showcase each week- he says, ‘I’ve got a new dance to show you’, I think this [practice] is what is contributing to Max’s growth as a dancer.. [Its such a joy] to see him grow, … the commitment he brings to the work and his performance quality.

Im often moved just in the rehearsal studio, sitting there just watching the [dancers] … the power that they bring to their work- and it’s a real joy to be part of that whole process, its very very rewarding..

In last years work “Hopes and Dreams”, Lizzie’s [dream] was to go to NY.. she produced this solo, New York New York .. it highlighted her qualities, we saw a real showgirl, but in working with her I began to see other aspects and one of them I coined her “elegance”, this is what I wanted to bring out more… We managed to merge a couple of ideas in the Lone Goat performance [installation].. we saw Lizzie dreaming of NY and Johns strong visual references- but we introduced the elegance in choreography…

… I just love working with [the dancers], its as simple as that…