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Sydney Dance Company launches NSW Festival of Place with series of short films

Sydney Dance Company's Dance Locale. Photo by Daniel Boud.
Sydney Dance Company's Dance Locale. Photo by Daniel Boud.

Sydney Dance Company has launched its involvement in the inaugural NSW Festival of Place, a year-long festival celebrating NSW’s public spaces initiated as a part of the State Government’s COVID Safe Summer program.

The festival has opened with the release of Dance Locale, a film series from the Sydney Dance Company and a live performance in The Rocks. The Dance Locale films were choreographed by Sydney Dance Company Artistic Director Rafael Bonachela and directed by Pedro Greig, and were inspired by the unique public spaces across NSW. The film series kicks off a year-long program of virtual and physical events exploring and reimagining our civic places. 

Minister for Planning and Public Spaces Rob Stokes said the Festival of Place encourages people to re-emerge, celebrate and engage with our everyday public spaces safely during and after this extraordinary time. 

“It’s been an unusual year, and this is not your usual kind of festival,” Stokes said. “It’s a chance for us to build on the new perspectives the pandemic has brought to our local public spaces, which we have come to appreciate and value more than ever this year. The Festival of Place kicks off a year-round celebration to inspire us all to enjoy our public spaces and generate ideas for how we can feel good about the places where we live, work, learn and play.” 

Bonachela added, “Dance Locale has given us the chance to celebrate and connect with our home city and region during a time when we have had limited opportunities to perform. We are delighted the five films bring dance to iconic locations that embody the breadth and diversity of NSW’s public spaces. The connection between the public realm and the creative spirit is so important.” 

Sydney Dance Company’s involvement in the festival will culminate in I Want To Dance With Somebody, a unique public participatory event, offering the public the opportunity to learn choreography from the company and participate in a major virtual dance performance in January 2021. 

Other free public and professional events offered during the Festival of Place include Summer Night Walks, Public Space Ideas Competition, Falling in Love with your Country, 100 Stories from the Field, Places to Love and My Favourite Places (social pinpoint). 

The Festival of Place runs from now through to September 2021. The Dance Locale films will be publicly viewable for free online on Sydney Dance Company’s websiteYouTube, and the Department of Planning, Industry and Environment website.

For more information, visit www.dpie.nsw.gov.au/premiers-priorities/great-public-spaces/festival-of-place.

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