Fresh Cuts (2012)

Q Theatre Loft, 305 Queen St, Auckland

10/10/2012 - 11/10/2012

Tempo Dance Festival 2012

Production Details

Thoughtful, compelling and fun, Fresh Cuts returns to Tempo with a brand new season of short dance works by emerging choreographers Natalie Clark, Anitra Hayday, Juanita Jelleyman, Jessie McCall and Charlene Tedrow (with Ktrina  Ura Tabu Pacific Dance) 


Choreographed by Natalie Maria Clark; performed by Natalie Maria Clark, Sarah Elsworth, Sofia McIntyre

People:   an odd, yet rather attractive bunch. The prospect of ACTUAL human interaction feels wonderfully terrifying. How on earth does one make friends and still appear normal? Here are a few ideas.

(The full-length version of How to Make Friends and Still Appear Normal is part of The Body Festival’s 2012 season in Christchurch 21 Sept – 14 Oct 2012.)

Choreographed by Anitra Hayday

A work exploring time, and everything that goes with it. Running late, arriving early, slow motion, alarm clocks, excuses, reversal etc etc. You name it, we dance it.


Choreographed by Juanita Jelleyman; performed by Jess Quaid, Rosa Provost and Michael Holland

It is hard to articulate: this space of vulnerability; this place of acute stillness within a state of flux. It is all relational I guess.

The shift from here?  Well…

I reach for others’ arms and in the reaching I remember it doesn’t last for long…they don’t last for long


Choreographed by Jessie McCall; performed by Sophia McIntyre,  Anitra Hayday, Shani Dickens and Phoebe Borwick

Do not dream of the future… When wishes are few, the heart is happy.  When craving ends, there is peace.  -Buddha

Magic happens when you believe in yourself… When I wish, my heart is full, oh Ooh oh, everything is possible.  -Barbie


Choreographed and performed by Charlene Tedrow and Ura Tabu Pacific Dance

Originally created for street theatre, Pacific Me Barbie is a response to the commercialization of Maori and Pacific cultures that followed the Rugby World Cup in 2011. Drawing inspiration from the classic Hula Doll image, Ura Tabu invites you to come and meet real life Hula Dolls and push play!


Choreographed by Katrina Fatupaito from Ura Tabu Pacific Dance

Raw Silk uncovers the influence Asian culture has on contemporary Samoan society. This dance draws parallels between the two cultures by way of exposing feminine eccentrics of beauty.

Dancers:  Natalie Maria Clark, Sarah Elsworth, Sofia McIntyre; Jess Quaid, Rosa Provost and Michael Holland; Sophia McIntyre,  Anitra Hayday, Shani Dickens and Phoebe Borwick; Charlene Tedrow and Ura Tabu Pacific Dance

1 hour

Fresh Cuts vs Y Chromozone: complementary opposites

Review by Raewyn Whyte 13th Oct 2012

Two more contrasting showcase programmes than Fresh Cuts and Y Chromozone are hard to imagine. Back-to-back placement on the Tempo 2012 dance festival programme, however, lets them become complementary opposites.

Fresh Cuts offers a distinctly feminine series of perspectives on everyday life, through contemporary dance works that tackle issues arising from interpersonal behavior in a social context, cross-cultural influences on ideas of what makes one beautiful, events that disrupt one’s world, everyday insecurities and vulnerabilities, getting out of bed in the morning with enough energy to tackle the day’s demands, and a critique of iconic representations of Pacific women. The programme mostly comprises complete short works, though some excerpts are included.

Y Chromozone is a celebration of the kind of polished masculinity which features in a wide array of dance forms….

Read the review


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Platform for emerging choreographers

Review by Dr Linda Ashley 11th Oct 2012

Tempo Dance Festival plays a number of roles for the Auckland dance industry, and providing a platform and support for emerging choreographers via the annual Fresh Cuts showcase is one of them.

Fresh Cuts 2012 is a mix of solid, well-developed works, and those with promise for fuller development. There are many moments to be enjoyed, and there are also times when you wonder why certain decisions were made, or were not challenged, and whether an outside eye was part of the work’s development

Opening the show, a trail of Pacific women solo dancers perched on podiums in the manner of hula dolls takes us through the foyers to the theatre, and sets a lively tone for the show. Passers-by can set the dancers off by pushing play, in reference to the conspicuous consumption and commodification of these cultures that Charlene Tedrow is concerned with in Pacific Me Barbie. The final Polynesian doll is encountered in the theatre wearing a blonde Marilyn Monroe wig; the image captures the essence of what follows. First, divested of wig and such, Marilyn becomes a traditional Hawaiian dancer, dancing what I think is a blessing for tonight’s show. Once all of the ‘dolls’ have arrived on stage, we move to a tourist-tinsel-town steeped in the tones of Elvis’ Rock-a-hula. A free flow of images follows. Women as puppets, as strong assertive inquisitors with the ‘cultural’ costumes gone, striptease, shop dummies and so forth. Transitions between the sections are subtle and flowing. Live drumming by Maile Griffin and Danny Kaitamaki adds strength to this work. All female Ura Tabu Pacific Dance have something to say and an engaging way of helping us to hear.

Similarly well-developed is Jessie McCall’s captivating, well-paced, amusing and punchy mix of dialogue and dance. Echoing thematically Pacific Me Barbie, McCall’s Gimme some sugar, i am your neighbour enters the material girl world of Madonna. Never having enough of what you want and craving what others have leaves these performers in La La Land. As the possible existence of a gift that keeps on giving gradually becomes a reality, the performers learn how to live with self and other.  The performers in both these pieces give the gift of quality and seem comfortable in the imaginative and evocative vocabularies chosen for/by them.

How to make friends and still appear normal 
carries a light and a dark landscape. Choreographer Natalie Clark opens the dance with an endearing personal narrative about the innocence of dance and life from her childhood, made all the more poignant and funny by the film of her tap dancing aged five. The sudden onset of a darker more adult world in which others judge you more harshly leads to movements suggestive of scrutiny, judgement and isolation as a way of escape. Friendships appear as both functional in supportive contact work, and difficult when one might become too clingy; a thoughtful choreography.

The use of traditional dance vocabulary in Ura Tabu’s signature style is a way to address contemporary themes. In Raw Silk, choreographed by Katerina Fatupaito, clashes between a roaring Asian tigress and a softer Samoan disposition are depicted in subtle ways, maintaining, however, a continuity of a feminist gaze.

Migrate tomorrow morning by Juanita Jelleyman affords a contrast to other more vigorous pieces in the programme with its prolonged images of sleeping and gradual waking. As dancers gradually find their feet they are seen as vulnerable in their isolation. The voice collage and sound track for this piece was well chosen.

Suddenly, If you’re going to be late, why don’t you just leave earlier? by Anitra Hayday, bursts into being with a contrasting perspective on the sleep/wake condition. Operating at a frenetic pace, it takes quantum leaps through images of time – being late, early, how getting dressed can be a temporal challenge when one is adopting a more haste- less speed strategy, this piece has some eyecatching moments. Further development of dance vocabulary, pacing and sectioning could draw out the potential impact latent within these pieces.

 The backgrounds of the emerging choreographers featured in Fresh Cuts 2012 show just how crucial the tertiary dance courses are in New Zealand as seed beds for our dance theatre industry. They have all studied dance at tertiary level and in so doing could have received inspiration and preparation to take their first steps towards a career in this amazing art form.

 Other issues that this selection of works reveal for me at least, include: how best to find movement that fits the technical range of dancers as well as the theme; the way dancing in one’s own work hampers the ability to see it fully and develop it as far as it might go; music choice that is not too obvious (or if it is, the choreography is sufficiently strong to hold its own) or does not overpower the movement, and I wonder here if there could be more funding to help young composers and choreographers to work together.

So go and see Fresh Cuts tonight so that you can say you saw so-and-so when she (and they were all female), first set out.




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