Sydney Dance Company appoints Tanja Liedtke as AD

I know it's last week's news, but I too wanted to congratulate Tanja Liedtke on her wild card appointment as Artistic Director of the Sydney Dance Company. This is indeed a significant decision on the part of the selection committee, a generational and aesthetic reinvigoration of the company that gives the company's work a sense of excitement again. With the choreographer of the exquisite and highly theatrical Twelfth Floor at the helm, I might even start attending SDC productions again after the (in my opinion) tedium of the last five years or so of Graham Murphy's reign (including the truly dreadful Party, and a bunch of other shows distinguished only by the costume design of Akira Isogawa such as the ho-hum Air and other invisible forces).

Good on you Tanja, and all the best with the 2008 program. Hopefully we'll still get to see Liedtke's new work Construct in Sydney in 2007 though...


Ming-Zhu Hii said…
Fantastic, isn't it? I was thrilled to hear the news.

(Just check your spelling on Akira Isogawa, with an 's' not a 'z'. Sorry, David, to be painful but I'm a bit of a stickler when it comes to spelling of the couturiers...)
David Williams said…
thanks Ming-Zhu. I'm in the middle of busting a student for plagarism, so i think its good to be occasionally pedantic about these things... congrats too on the spark gig
(though i must confess to some suprise that someone with your level of experience is still young enough to get one of these!)

i hope the season is going well, despite alison's misgivings.

David, you know full-well my distrust of the word 'emerging'...

Well, what was wonderful about the announcement was that the Australian Financial Review called her 'an emerging choreographer'.

Can one now assume that she is no longer 'emerging'?
David Williams said…
Yes Nick, I think one might infer that she has 'emerged'. Getting a big job does have the effect of transforming one from a pupae into a butterfly, after all.

I just hope that she can make the company fly, and have every confidence that she can do so. But it remains a risky, exciting choice, to hand over a plum role to a relative newcomer. I suspect Sophie Travers from Critical Path (who was on the selection panel) may have helped - she's not scared of the bold new idea, and is well able to sell it too.

If I wasn't so old and fat, I'd be auditioning for SDC now... Might one describe that as delusions of dancing?
Ming-Zhu Hii said…
Thank you, David. That really is a wonderful compliment.

The season is going wonderfully, thank you. We're getting some fantastic houses which is a lovely surprise, and a joy to play to. Doing a classic is a funny thing, I think. One has to in some way gird one's loins to wade into very particular responses that come from such a very particular undertaking.

I believe it is a incredibly brave thing for a director to decide to produce a classic, regardless of anybody's various responses, especially here, now, in Australia in 2007, for reasons too numerous to go into in your comments box.

I only hope that more and more directors trust themselves enough to decide to take that leap of faith. I think now, more than ever, we're hungry for it!
Ming-Zhu Hii said…
Apologies for repetition of adj. 'wonderful'. I will now try and minimise it's negative impression by way of comparative reference: Bugger, bugger, bugger. Works every time...

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