Reflecting on Community
My life-long body of work has been underpinned by a deep passion for, and exploration of, the concept of community. Since the closing of our Festival work ARCHIVES OF HUMANITY, I have had the opportunity to pause, and reflect on my community and the role it plays in making the artistic vision for Co3 Contemporary Dance a reality.
Co3 is comprised of a community of exceptional humans, that all have unique personal circumstances, passions, motivations, external commitments and responsibilities. Although a varied group of people, we all strive to achieve the best for the company and collectively support one another in this endeavour. In the studio I have a philosophy; no dancer is left behind. This philosophy has grown to become a whole company philosophy, one that comes in to play in our daily pursuits in the studio, office and on stage.
Since the foundation of Co3 in 2015, there have been multiple changes in our company members lives. We began this journey younger and fresh-faced, perhaps without realising that as our lives would change, so would the nature of how the company operates. Many of us now have small families, the community of Co3 ever growing. With this growth, the company’s understanding and support to encourage family life continues to flourish.
On many occasions during the development period of ARCHIVES OF HUMANITY, the children of artists and staff joined us in the studio, bringing with them their sense of wonder, joy and play. My son Harvey joins us regularly and has gifted me with a shifting perspective, bringing a play and a calm to my environment. I always say that if I need to make something beautiful, I need little Harvey close to me. I love watching and encouraging his interaction with the dancers, who often use him as a warm up “tool” or play remote control Batman cars with him in their break!
In many moments during the making of ARCHIVES OF HUMANITY I reflected on just how much the company had grown. Co3 is proudly committed to supporting parents. Alana and I often talk about work life integration, not work life balance. We have an embedded understanding of what being a parent entails, and how it impacts our work. We are not only committed to supporting our working parents, but we are actively flexible in the arrangements for our families and the experiences we can offer our young children. Personally, I am very proud of this commitment and feel incredibly honoured to jointly lead and be a part of the Co3 community.
Sometimes it is very hard leading the charge with a three-year-old, however I am deeply humbled by the understanding and support I have from my colleagues. I promised Butoh Master, the late Yoshito Ohno, that I would continue to encourage the search for our child in our dance, and to go with care. I am truly blessed that Co3 supports and encourages both of these aspects of my promise.
I am proud to also announce that my dear friend Eden Mulholland, composer and artistic collaborator has just released the soundtrack to ARCHIVES OF HUMANITY.