Made In New Zealand 2007

Hawkes Bay Opera House, Hastings

19/05/2007 - 19/05/2007

Opera House, Wellington

27/04/2007 - 27/04/2007

Production Details

Choreographyt by:
Malia Johnston
Michael Parmenter
Deirdre Tarrant
Julia Sadler
Tim Fletcher
Moss Patterson

Footnote Dance

Their trademark season of the year for Footnote Dance, Made in New Zealand 20007 promises exhilaration, energy and excellence to audiences who enjoy the challenges of contemporary dance.

Set to Kiwi music, Footnote Dance, Made in New Zealand features choreographies by leading New Zealand choreographers.  This dazzling line-up includes Malia Johnston, Michael Parmenter, Deirdre Tarrant, Julia Sadler, Tim Fletcher and Moss Patterson.  Guest artists for this performance only are Australia’s Tasdance performing Mercy – a new choreography by Raewyn Hill.

New territory for New Zealand contemporary culture is being explored in the debut of 2007 Made in New Zealand, produced by the Footnote Dance.

2007 Made in New Zealand features six works by top dance choreographers Michael Parmenter, Deirdre Tarrant, Malia Johnston, Julia Sadler, Moss Paterson and Tim Fletcher, designed and choreographed in collaboration with company dancers and set to New Zealand music.

The musicians provided original scores and worked with the choreographers in what is one of the most significant dance events this year when Footnote Dance begins its annual programme of contemporary dance repertory. Tickets are now on sale.

Musicians include Samuel Flynn Scott (Phoenix Foundation), Richard Nunns and Pitch Black’s Paddy Free, David Parsons, Stephen Gallagher (Rhombus, Stellar*), Ben Brady and Motocade’s Eden Mulholland.

Footnote director Deirdre Tarrant said 2007 Made in New Zealand celebrates the flourishing local dance and music scene and is well-timed for NZ Music Month.

2007 Made in New Zealand breaks new ground for dance in Aotearoa,” said Ms Tarrant. “Five of the six performances have had new music commissioned and the choreography was developed alongside the composing of the music.

“With each work, the composers and choreographers have toiled back and forth with each other to create the finished product, quite a difference from a choreographer simply choosing a piece of music and setting their work to it.

“The musicians have never been closer to the development of a contemporary dance and obviously we’re very happy to have such a great calibre of musicians who were keen to broaden their artistic horizons with us.

“Each work has something specific and individual to say as each choreographer has their own individual voice and speaks through their choreography with a purpose to challenge, excite and inspire their audience,” she said.

27 April
Venue:The Opera House, Wellington
Concession and group discount available
*Service fees may apply
Ticketek 04 384 3840

3-4 May
Venue: The Herald Theatre, The Edge, Auckland
Bookings: Concession and group discount available
*Service fees may apply
Ticketek 09 307 5000 or

19 May
Venue: Hawke’s Bay Opera House, Hastings
Bookings: Concession and group discount available
*Service fees may apply
TicketDirect 0800 224 224 or 

Dance , Contemporary dance , Children’s ,

Substance, disappointment, fun for the young, athletic energy …

Review by Dawn Sanders QSM, ONZM 28th Apr 2007

Physically fine-tuned and energised bodies performed to a well-filled Wellington Opera House for Footnote Dance’s first performance of its seven city season.

The evening began with Mercy: A Dance for the Forgotten,which  premiered in Wanaka on 24 April. For  Raewyn Hill, the six weeks she spent in Australia with Tasdance to create this substantial work was both personally challenging and validating. Inspired initially by Tasmania’s convict past and the 1996 mass shooting in Fort Arthur, Mercy: A Dance for the Forgotten is as much about violence, repression, misery and poignancy within society and ourselves.

A bell tolls as Pergolesi’s Marian Vespers, reconstructed by musicologist, Malcolm Bruno begins. Superb lighting effects from the outset start with thin threads of light picking up the red ribbons extending from the dancers lying spread-eagled on the floor to ‘on high’. Marionette style, the dancers are controlled and manipulated.

Press gang chains clank hauntingly in stark contrast with the ecclesiastical music. Bondage, domestic violence, and even the sacrificial lamb feature in a beautifully controlled passage, hanging upside down on a pole supported by two male dancers.

Strong yet fluid performances by Derrick Amanatidis and Trisha Dunn are complimented by the other four dancers in their black corsets and layered net skirts.

As though on stilts, the sequence with women carried above the men is stunningly sustained. At first frenzied, movements in the latter part of this lengthy work give way to striking shapes and sensitive use of often somewhat neglected arms and hands in contemporary dance. Although glorious, this score is long and some sections choreographically need editing as well.

Hopefully the collaboration with Tasdance will continue and produce more valuable opportunities for trans-Tasman interaction.

Bahkti, the first work by Footnote Dance, disappoints. Choreographed by Michael Parmenter, walking in circles and figures of eight gives way to running and then inclusion of some leaps. 

Kokowai, choreographed by Moss Patterson, is another ‘high mileage’ number, a machine-like soundscape emphasising the incessant energy created and spent. If red kokowai paint symbolises "prestige, pride and sacredness", pulling their own and each other’s hair seems to bear little relevance. It was sad to hear that Sarah Knox injured herself badly in this work – so much so that the final work of the programme, the much anticipated one by Malia Johnson, had to be cancelled.

Tim Fletcher’s The Chicken or the Lamb provides a quirky view of people dealing with long haulage flights. For that protracted duration of the temporary cooped up community, even the same path is a different journey within for each of the travellers.

From strikingly dramatic, somewhat crazed Erynne Wilson to the nonchalant, each person’s character is established and portrayed with varying degrees of definition.

Around the World in Wellington, conceptualised and directed by Deirdre Tarrant, was created for the recent Capital E Festival. Better suited for that environment than the Opera House stage, the charming stories related by a child’s voice are personified by the dancers. From the literal Chinese lion to the more abstract interpretations of the German, half-Danish, Polish, the Turkish and pertinent Gallipoli tale, and Sri Lankan, snippets like that of the elephant and lots of ants endure.

Tarrant writes: "The stories are all very individual and they tell us a little about how they keep their own cultures alive while being kiwi kids." Playground games and rounds are fun and would appeal to the younger audiences.

With Malia Johnson’s Broken by Design not able to be performed owing to the injury sustained by Knox, Match was the last work on the programme. Created by Christchurch-based Julia Sadler, this is described as:
"Find a match / Be a match / Meet one’s match…"

Although extremely athletic and energetic, this work fails to fully ignite. In music there is an identifiable progression from scales to arpeggios, etudes to sonatas, concerti to symphonies. It is not as easy to distinguish in choreography. At times filling the music available with movements seems to be given greater importance than tending to the dynamic overall structure and shape of the work, and what it is intending to convey to the audience.

It is a shame that the attractively produced programme cannot be read by many, even with magnification, its tiny font indistinct in the half-lit theatre between works.

Delivering a NZ Made programme, including not only the choreography but also almost all of the music (with its individual sponsors listed with the programme notes), is a great credit to Footnote Dance, as is its allegiance with Tasdance.


Anon. May 10th, 2007

I'm not quite sure Dawn Sanders did her homework or maybe the words in the programme were too small. I'm sure the massacres occured in a place called PORT Arthur rather than a fort. Not sure how you could analyze this show without obviously having much information about where is was based. Also I find it strange that you could get a dancers name incorrect when there are only 6 in Footnote Dance. The last name Wilson does not belong to any dancer in the company. Gleeson perhaps is what you were looking for?? I agree that there was no spark to this season. Bit tired looking.Technically the dancers are great, sometimes out of time, but the show was slightly monotonous.Was looking forward to the show but left disappointed.

julia kennard May 5th, 2007

hey all! just wanted 2 drop a note on this footnote production - havnt actually seen the show itself but saw them perform a piece (around the world in wellington) on the Good Morning show and i loved it so good stuff! Am down in dunners so will definitely b heading along wen it gets here after having seen this piece performe. heapsa luk with the rest of the tour and i'll hopefully b seeing u soon!

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