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Ignition Ignites Again In Adelaide

Ignition Ignites Again In Adelaide

Ignition Ignites Again In AdelaidePhoto by Chris Herzfeld

For 15 innovative years, Adelaide was treated to awe-inspiring dance routines by some of South Australia’s most promising choreographic talent. ‘Ignition’ is the brain-child of Australian Dance Theatre (ADT) Art Director Garry Stewart, who gave choreographers a chance to showcase their moves.

Now, after a few years on forced vacation (damn those pesky funding cuts!), a talented team are ready to provide an audience with what one of this year’s artists, Matte Roffe, describes as a “jam packed night full of exciting short works that will challenge them, make them laugh and potentially cry.”

Matte, current ADT dancer Thomas Fonua, independent dance theatre owner Katrina Lazaroff and renowned dancer Erin Fowler will each present a ten-minute performance, while Lina Limosani will showcase her upcoming French Revolution inspired play ‘One’s Wicked Ways’. The thread that binds these artists together is the theme imposed by Garry: history. “We can use that theme to express what we want and let our minds run free. Apart from that, there really are no rules. It’s always great to have a challenge and having that topic of history makes you think about what message you want to bring.”

Matte’s message is one of serious glamour: he’s hopelessly in love with the Golden Age of Hollywood, circa Elizabeth Taylor, 1966. “It’s one of my most loved things and where I’ve drawn my inspiration from.” Matte says. “I’m doing my take on the ‘Who’s Afraid Of Virginia Woolfe’ play and movie. It’s about these ridiculously expressive characters that go through one alcohol fuelled night. It’s got a lot of anguish and emotional pain, so it really transfers into contemporary dance because it’s got all these rich, raw and extreme emotions.”

“I didn’t want to do something too obvious, so by doing this history of cinematic art, it’s a really different take on it that no one else is doing. All of the cast have fallen in love with the movie and the amazing beautifully flawed characters.”

Music is, of course, integral to the lavish dance routines these works showcase, and Matte has utilised the works of Alex North and ‘American Horror Story’ composer James S. Levine.
“His heavy electronic experimental electronic music sat well with the beautiful dialogue that’s in the ‘Wolfe’ movie because it’s so expressive and almost assaults you to begin with because it’s so full on!”

While some of the other performers history-themed performances are being kept under wraps, Matte can reveal fellow ADT dancer Thomas Fonua’s contribution, about a grisly chapter in human history: human zoos. “It’s a really full on emotional piece, because he’s Samoan and he is really enriched in his culture and human zoos are something that really affected his culture.”
Despite the artist’s different interpretations of history, they all closely collaborate with each other under the watchful eye of Garry Stewart who will be curating the show.

“We’re very lucky to have him being a mentor for us and helping us develop the skills that are already there, but that need to be nurtured. We bounce ideas off each other so the idea can reach its full fruition and, on the other side as a dancer that’s working with a choreographer, its exactly the same process.”

“It’s a really exciting thing for an audience to watch. It’s almost like a variety show – they get all these different ideas and concepts thrown at them.”

(originally published Scenestr Jun 28 ’16 http://scenestr.com.au/arts/ignition-ignites-again-in-adelaide)

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