Now Pieces #5
Now Pieces continues a long standing disciplined exploration of embodied performance practice that leads to crafted, spontaneous and artful communication made on-the-go. On the last Sunday of the month, Now Pieces offers an improvisational performance evening at Dancehouse dedicated to low-fi public performances curated by and featuring local dance luminaries.
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Six dancers, one drummer and a physical environment built by objects of memory, desire and curiosity–this edition of NOW PIECES brings together a diverse group of women from various pockets of Naarm dance communities and musician Evelyn Morris.
Through Morris’ unreservedly curious play on the drums, the dancers co-create new worlds to inhabit in through multiple layers of listening. Supported by the physical mess and their distinctive styles of expression, I’m curious about what multitude of states we can be in frequency with and the glorious worlds we can find together.
Curator/Dancer: Jennifer Ma
Musician: Evelyn Morris
Dancers: Aleena Panagopoulos, Mara Galagher, Susana Le, Gabrielle Fallon, Jada Narkle
Jennifer Ma (she/her) is a Naarm-based Taiwanese-Australian dancer, choreographer and producer. Jennifer’s collaborative dance practice sees her working with dancers across street and contemporary dance; choreographing works for theater and film. At its core, Jennifer’s practice aspires to elevate the presence of other culturally diverse artists. Her collaborative processes house her keen interest in the embodiment of multiplicity within personal narratives.
Jennifer’s works have been presented at Melbourne Fringe, Dancehouse, Bunjil Place, Hyphenated Biennial and RISING, alongside multiple short dance films with her collaborators. She was a member of youth dance company, Yellow Wheel; street dance collective, Mute Crew; Dancehouse’s Emerging Choreographers Program, a recipient of City of Melbourne’s Arts Residency and the Detour Interconnected Dance Fellowship. She has worked with local and international artists including Jo Lloyd, Tasdance, Stephanie Lake Company, Liesel Zink, Su Hui-Yu and more.
Evelyn Morris (they/them) is a gifted composer celebrated for their dexterity across multiple instruments and for composition that is complex and structurally adventurous.
After ten years, 5 albums and 4 EPs as Pikelet, Evelyn Morris released their first self-titled album on Milk! Records. This release signalled a change in trajectory for Evelyn, towards film, working alongside dancers, and recently, composition in gallery contexts in response to artists such as Agatha Gothe-Snape, Elizabeth Newman, Sarah Rodigari and Vivienne Binns.
Evelyn has an extensive improvisational practice in various contexts, most notably alongside Deanne Butterworth in many of Deanne’s past solo works and with Deanne, Jo Lloyd and Tina Havelock-Stevens in Double Double.
Their first feature soundtrack Acute Misfortune earned them an ARIA nomination in 2018. Evelyn has scored two more feature films and a short film. Millie Lies Low, a New Zealand film, premiered at the Berlin Film Festival and Sydney Film Festival, and recently had it’s USA debut in New York.
Aleena Panagopoulos (she/her), better known as Lil Antagonize, is a leading young Australian Krumper with a remarkable 14 years of dance experience, including 5 years devoted to Krump.
In 2018, Aleena has also ventured into the performance art scene, working with the likes of photographer/videographer Rachel Main for ‘Women Who Buck’ exhibition, presented as part of Gertrude St Projection Arts Festival. She also collaborated with Rachel Main and artist Jennifer Ma for dance film ‘SURFACE’ supported by Brimbank City Council and presented at Gertrude St Projection Festival 2022.Since 2018, Aleena has also co-facilitated a beginner friendly, female only Krump session in Melbourne’s CBD named ‘Zero Sessions’’. This was to ensure a safe environment for women who wanted to discover Krump for the first time, in a supported environment with like-minded individuals.
Aleena is currently a part of L2R’s Igniting Legends Program led by David Prakash which places three young creatives on year long paid internships.
Mara Galagher (she/her) is a performance artist based in Naarm, she works within dance, performance art and video art.
Recently she performed in Alicia Frankovich’s work ‘Rich in World, Poor in World’ as a part of NGV’s MelbourneNow performance program. Mara has also worked with Gabriella Imrichova on multiple projects most notably ‘24.01.23-25.01.23’ Contact High, Gertrude Glasshouse; as well as in Alexander Powers work for aliens of extraordinary ability, Temperance Hall. Other artists she’s worked with include: Jo Lloyd, Tasdance, Lilian Steiner and Deep Soulful Sweats.
Mara is forming a practice around decay, degeneracy, highlighting the least flattering moments and being a sacrifice for others disturbed wants. She grew up training and performing Russian, Serbian and Ukrainian Folk dance as well as classical ballet. Having this foundation in stoic and disciplined artforms is something she both acknowledges and dismisses when moving and making.
Susana Le (she/her) is a movement artist.
She advocates for the healing power of dance.
Her influences include contemporary and street styles, waacking in particular.
Dancing to her favourite childhood songs from the 80s is her jam.
Chasing self expression and freedom in movement is her goal.
She is both creative and technical.
Outside of dance, she practices as a dentist for balance. She is inspired by her kids, who remind her what it means to play and dance like no one is watching.
Gabrielle Fallon (she/they) is an independent, queer Filipina/Australian artist and dancemaker. Originating from Sydney, Gabi was classically trained at Brent Street in 2018. They completed their BFA in Dance at the Victorian College of the Arts in 2021. Gabrielle has performed and collaborated with works from choreographers such as Danielle Micich, michelle heaven, Carol Brown, Daniel Riley and Jennifer Ma. Recently, Gabrielle has worked with Brownyn Kidd on her photography exhibition “Through Her Breadth” (2023). Currently, Gabrielle is working with street styles to explore traditionally, stylistically masculine and feminine movements and the idea of living a legacy through dance and community.
Jada Narkle (she/they/baal) is a multidisciplinary, collaborative artist and Noongar yorga, from the Wiilman and Yued tribes of Western Australia. Jada’s practise prefaces the deep and intricate understanding and exploration of interconnectivity. Through this knowledge they are recontextualising their understanding of time and space, the body’s interaction and endless navigation of these as non-linear concepts. As a Blak woman, Jada aims to facilitate spaces with softness and vulnerability. Their creative process is demonstrative of ancestral connections, genetic memory, intersectionality and trauma pathways, which manifest in movement, language, poetry and installation. Jada understands this to be a continual holding of Noongar kaartdijin across and throughout the Nyitting (time and space) in which they occupy.