20. 09. 2016

Mt Gambier Eisteddford

Recently the Dance Jungle Gym headed out to the Mount Gambier Eisteddford. This was a chance to take the Gym to young aspiring dancers and see how they would interact with the installation. Although there were small pockets of time when they were not performing in their competition categories, we were able to share this experience with a large number of talented and intrigued young people.

Through all the hairspray, make-up and costumes we saw a variety of dancers work their way through the Gym. The conversation about what it was and what it did seemed like the most common question asked. Mainly children went through the Gym, however many of the parents were interested and this gave me an opportunity to chat to them about the program and the upcoming shows touring to the venue.

I have noticed that the gym allows us a way to communicate about the performances that are programmed for the theatres. It is a great ice breaker that informs people about shows they shouldn’t miss out on. It keeps people well informed and engaged. As previously noticed, the best way to get people in to the theatre to experience contemporary art, is that we need to be proactive in talking about them and generating interest face to face. Offering lead up events that interact with the community generates interest and excitement.

We have also been doing Q & A’s with the professional touring artists. This allows the audiences to get to know the performer before they come and breaks down the wall between artist and audience member. These are available on the Country Arts SA website and through the DanceXtend Facebook page.

DanceXtend is about community engagement and slowly but surely we are learning about the best way to do this.

Larissa McGowan

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Workshop dates TBC


Dance Workshop


Larissa McGowan and Country Arts SA



About the Artist

Larissa McGowan

After studying dance in Brisbane and Melbourne, Larissa joined Australian Dance Theatre in 2000 and has since toured extensively with the company winning multiple awards for Best Female Dancer including a Helpmann and Australian Dance Award. Larissa appeared as a guest choreographer on two seasons of ‘So You Think You Can Dance’. She has created work for WOMADelaide, Link Dance Company, Sydney Dance Company, Tasdance and premiered her first full length work, ‘Skeleton’ at the 2013 Dance Massive.

Country Arts SA recognises and respects that we are living and creating on Aboriginal Lands and we are committed to working together to honour their living cultures.