60 dancers: 60 stories


9 - 12 December
Playhouse, QPAC

Presented by Queensland Ballet and QPAC

60 dancers: 60 stories QPAC Program

From the Artistic Director

This performance was born out of one of the most challenging periods in Queensland Ballet’s 60-year history, and the explosion of creativity and imagination that arose from it makes me so proud of the Company we are today.

From apartments and balconies and backyards across Brisbane, our dancers created 60 new works based on the theme of love to engage and inspire, and to express gratitude to our supporters during the challenge that has become 2020. From these origins, the performance tonight evolved to form a narrative on love which we hope will touch the hearts of everyone here in the audience.

I can say with certainty that we expected our 60th birthday year to be a season of celebrations and while it hasn’t turned out as any of us could have possibly planned, we’re excited by the originality that has flourished at Queensland Ballet in the face of adversity.

My heartfelt thanks goes to all our supporters, including our Principal Partner Suncorp, as well the entire QB team.

I hope you enjoy our 60 dancers: 60 stories program as much as we enjoyed creating it for you.

Li Cunxin AO
Artistic Director

Li Cunxin AO

Chief Executive Message 

When art is created from the heart, not much can hold it back. Unsurprisingly, the artists of Queensland Ballet refused to let even a global pandemic stop them from developing and sharing their craft, the result of which is this collection of works based on the theme of love while in isolation.

60 dancers: 60 stories is as much an ode to love as it is a love letter to the artform of ballet itself. This series of short ballets explores personal experience and intimate connection, each piece showcasing the extraordinary ability of movement to tell a story. It is a gift to the audience from these artists whose love of their craft is more than evident throughout. 

What an appropriate and authentic way to mark Queensland Ballet’s 60th anniversary in what was meant to be a year of galas and celebrations. We warmly acknowledge this milestone and welcome the Company to this Queensland’s Own season enabled by the Queensland Government’s Arts and Cultural Recovery Package. 

John Kotzas
Chief Executive, QPAC

John Kotzas

Section 1 - Where Is Love?

Director’s Note: Rani Luther 

Where is Love is a selection of works from Queensland Ballet’s 60 Dancers: 60 Stories series. Created by our dancers for film, each has been adapted for the stage to fit this intimate setting. Representing the theme ‘Where is Love’, each work embraces the expression of longing, wonderment, searching, solitude, or hope.  

The musical arrangements for each were pivotal in guiding us to link each piece together while creating a dynamic flow of both unison and solitary stories.  

“Love can only be found through the act of loving.” – Paulo Coelho 

Reflection

Choreography - Laura Hidalgo 

Music - ‘Rêverie’, L.68 by Claude Debussy, adapted and performed by Stefanie Gumienik 

Cast - Laura Hidalgo (9 December 7pm, 11 December 7:30pm & 12 December 7:30pm) - Rian Thompson (10 December 7pm, 12 December 3:30pm)

11W

Choreography - Luke Dimattina 

Music - Not the Man I Love, composed and performed by Brett Sturdy 

Cast - Lachlan Mair (9 December 7pm, 11 December 7:30pm & 12 December 7:30pm) - Dylan Lackey (10 December 7pm, 12 December 3:30pm)

Afterglow of a Nocturne

Choreography - Neneka Yoshida 

Music - Nocturne, Op. 9, No. 2 in E Flat Major by Frédéric Chopin, adapted and performed by Stefanie Gumienik 

Cast - Neneka Yoshida (9 December 7pm, 11 December 7:30pm & 12 December 7:30pm) - Ines Hargreaves (10 December 7pm, 12 December 3:30pm)

Entwine

Choreography - David Power 

Music - ‘Powerful Silence’ from Improvisations on the Theme of Love, composed and performed by Stefanie Gumienik

Cast - David Power (9 December 7pm, 12 December 7:30pm) Isaak Mclean (10 December 7pm, 11 December 7:30pm) Louis Ramsay (12 December 3:30pm)

Introspection

Choreography - Renee Freeman and Heidi Freeman 

Music - Nocturne from Deux Morceaux, Op.10, No.1. by Piotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky, adapted and performed by Brett Sturdy 

Cast - Renee Freeman and Heidi Freeman (9 December 7pm, 11 December 7:30pm & 12 December 7:30pm) 

- Brooke Ray / Paige Rochester and Lucy Christodoulou (10 December 7pm, 12 December 3:30pm) 

Real Love

Choreography - Edward Pope 

Music - ‘Love Lost’ from Improvisations on the Theme of Love, composed and performed by Stefanie Gumienik 

Cast – Edward Pope (9 December 7pm, 11 December 7:30pm & 12 December 7:30pm) - Shaun Curtis (10 December 7pm, 12 December 3:30pm) 

Come With

Choreography - Lina Kim Music - Gymnopédie No.1 (excerpt) by Erik Satie, performed by Brett Sturdy 

Cast - Lina Kim (9 December 7pm, 11 December 7:30pm & 12 December 7:30pm) - Lou Spichtig (10 December 7pm, 12 December 3:30pm) 

Eros

Choreography - Liam Geck 

Music - Moonlight Sonata (excerpt), Op. 27, No. 2 by Ludwig van Beethoven, performed by Brett Sturdy 

Cast - Liam Geck (9 December 7pm, 11 December 7:30pm & 12 December 7:30pm) - John Paul Lowe (10 December 7pm, 12 December 3:30pm)

Section 2 - Looking For Love

Director’s Note - Matthew Lawrence

‘Looking for Love’ is an arrangement of light-hearted pieces from 60 dancers: 60 stories. It runs as a jovial narrative, of ‘comrades’ and girlfriends, searching, fantasising, posturing, and flirting their way to a relationship.

The ‘girlfriend’ sections, although inspired by the dancer’s individual works in the digital series, are newly developed by the dancers. With their presence supplying the romantic and comedic foil for their male admirers.

A special thanks to Janette Mulligan for her assistance in staging and Mary Li for adding the extra soft Sylph layers. Thank you to our inspiring dancers, who generously allowed their pieces to evolve and to our wonderful music team who rose to every challenge.

Looking for Love

Choreography - Kieren Bofinger 

Music - Looking for Love composed by Kieren Bofinger, performed by Stefanie Gumienik 

Cast - Kieren Bofinger (9 December 7pm, 11 December 7:30pm & 12 December 7:30pm) - Callum Mackie (10 December 7pm, 12 December 3:30pm)

Girlfriends - Isabella Swietlicki, Sophie Zoricic, Vanessa Morelli & Serena Green (9 December 7pm, 11 December 7:30pm & 12 December 7:30pm) - Alyssa Kelty, Talia Fidra, Briana McAllen & Bronte Kielly-Coleman (10 December 7pm) Alyssa Kelty, Talia Fidra, Yuka Nojo & Kayla Van Den Bogert (12 December 3:30pm)

La Sylphide

Featuring Queensland Symphony Orchestra Principal First Violin Shane Chen

Music - La Sylphide, Act 1 (excerpt) by Herman Severin Løvenskiold, performed by Brett Sturdy Additional Music - Brett Sturdy 

Cast - Laura Tosar (9 December 7pm, 11 December 7:30pm & 12 December 7:30pm) - Libby-Rose Niederer (10 December 7pm, 12 December 3:30pm)

Comrades

Choreography - Patricio Revé, Oscar Delbao and Charlie Slater 

Music - ‘Vals’ from Lyric Pieces, Op. 12, No. 2 by Edvard Grieg, adapted and performed by Stefanie Gumienik 

Cast - Patricio Revé, Oscar Delbao and Lewis Formby (9 December 7pm, 11 December 7:30pm & 12 December 7:30pm) - Ari Thompson, Samuel Packer and Daniel Kempson (10 December 7pm, 12 December 3:30pm)

Looking for Love: Interlude

Music – excerpts from Swan Lake by Pyotr Tchaikovsky and ‘Spach Zarathustra’ by Richard Strauss arranged and performed by Stefanie Gumienik  

Cast - Artists of Queensland Ballet

Cy-gents

Choreography - adapted by Janette Mulligan from original choreography by Marius Petipa and Lev Ivanov 

Music - Swan Lake, Act 2 (excerpt) by Piotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky, performed by Brett Sturdy 

Cast - Patricio Revé, Oscar Delbao, Lewis Formby and Kieren Bofinger (9 December 7pm, 11 December 7:30pm & 12 December 7:30pm) - Ari Thompson, Samuel Packer, Daniel Kempson and Callum Mackie (10 December 7pm, 12 December 3:30pm)

En-Counter

Choreography - Isabella Swietlicki and Kohei Iwamoto 

Music - Tambourin in E Minor by Jean-Philippe Rameau, arranged by Nigel Gaynor and performed by Nigel Gaynor and Roger Cui 

Cast - Isabella Swietlicki and Kohei Iwamoto (9 December 7pm, 11 December 7:30pm & 12 December 7:30pm) - Zhi Fang and Alyssa Kelty (10 December 7pm, 12 December 3:30pm)

Section 3 - In Love

Director’s Note - Greg Horsman

The ‘In Love’ section of this program is made up of some of the pas de deuxs created for 60 dancers: 60 stories. I arranged the order of these pas de deuxs with choreographic style and music in mind to construct a coherent body of works that reflect the theme – ‘In Love’.

The following quote by the poet and writer Lang Leav sums up this section perfectly -

“When two souls fall in love, there is nothing else but yearning to be close to each other. The presence is felt through a held hand, a voice heard and the sight of a smile. Even through a simple touch. They only know it feels right to be with one another. This is the reason why you miss someone so much when they are not around.” – Lang Leav

Beautiful Sedation

Choreography - Paige Rochester and Mali Comlekci 

Music - Beautiful Sedation composed by George Bokaris, performed by Stefanie Gumienik 

Cast - Paige Rochester and Mali Comlekci (9 December 7pm, 11 December 7:30pm & 12 December 7:30pm) - Hayley Thompson and Clayton Forsyth (10 December 7pm, 12 December 3:30pm)

A Love Like Ours

Choreography - Joel Woellner and Alison McWhinney 

Music - Prelude in D, Op.23. No 4 by Sergei Rachmaninoff, adapted and performed by Brett Sturdy 

Cast - Georgia Swan and Joel Woellner (9 December 7pm, 11 December 7:30pm & 12 December 7:30pm) - Vanessa Morelli and Vito Bernasconi (10 December 7pm, 12 December 3:30pm)

Prelude

Choreography - Lucy Green and Samuel Packer 

MusicPrelude (No 1) composed by Peter Wilson, performed by Roger Cui 

Cast - Lucy Green and Samuel Packer (9 December 7pm, 11 December 7:30pm & 12 December 7:30pm) - Tonia Looker and Liam Geck (10 December 7pm, 12 December 3:30pm)

Your Hands on my Eyes

Featuring Queensland Symphony Orchestra Principal First Violin Shane Chen

Choreography - Dylan Lackey 

Music - Nocturne in E Minor, Op. 72, No. 1 by Frédéric Chopin, adapted and performed by Stefanie Gumienik 

Cast - Neneka Yoshida and Alexander Idaszak (9 December 7pm, 11 December 7:30pm & 12 December 7:30pm)- Serena Green and D’Arcy Brazier (10 December 7pm, 12 December 3:30pm)

Caricias

Choreography - Yanela Piñera and Camilo Ramos 

Music - ‘Clair de Lune’ from Suite bergamasque, L. 75 by Claude Debussy, adapted and performed by Nigel Gaynor 

Cast - Yanela Piñera and Camilo Ramos (9 December 7pm, 11 December 7:30pm & 12 December 7:30pm) - Chiara Gonzalez and David Power (10 December 7pm & 12 December 3:30pm)

Ave Maria

Featuring Queensland Symphony Orchestra Principal First Violin Shane Chen

Choreography - Mia Heathcote and Victor Estévez 

Music - Ave Maria by Franz Schubert, adapted by Anabel and Adrian Estévez and performed by Roger Cui (Piano) and Stefanie Gumienik (Piano Accordion) 

Cast - Mia Heathcote and Victor Estévez (9 December 7pm, 11 December 7:30pm & 12 December 7:30pm) - Neneka Yoshida and Patricio Reve (10 December 7pm)- Laura Tosar and Patricio Reve (12 December 3:30pm)

Production Credits

Technical Director/ Lighting Designer - Cameron Goerg

Head of Production - Shaun O’Rourke

Production Stage Manager - Heather O’Keeffe

Head Mechanist - Don Mackenzie

Deputy Head Mechanist - Daniel Villiers

Head Electrician - Skye Lilliss

Wardrobe Production Credits

Head of Wardrobe - Noelene Hill

Deputy Head of Wardrobe - Lauryn Jackson

Wardrobe Workroom Manager/ Principal Cutter - Anna Ilic

Performance Wardrobe Manager & Principal Cutter - Erin Krosch

Workroom Coordinator/Theatre Manager - Zoe Griffiths

Workroom Coordinator/Cutters Assistant - Jayne Warrington

Senior Costumier & Workroom Assistant - Isabelle Lacombe

Costumiers - Kathryn Lee, Vicki Martin, Frances Pyper, Elizabeth Ball, Jackqueline Parry, Margie Stafford

Dresser/Maintenance - Jackqueline Parry

Shoe Coordinator - Amanda Newman

Shoe Assistant - Callyn Farrell

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60 dancers: 60 stories is funded through the Queensland Government’s $22.5 million two-year Arts and Cultural Recovery Package.