Dance Nation at Belvoir St Theatre
Making its Sydney debut at Belvoir St Theatre this March, Dance Nation sees a dance studio become a microcosm for teenage friendship and competition in an energetic and subversive comedy, previously described as “part-Dance Moms, part-Hunger Games”.
Dance Nation is an exuberant exploration of adolescence, American exceptionalism, and a “stop-at-nothing” drive to be the best. The play’s teenagers are portrayed by adult actors in a nod to how we carry the experiences in our formative years for the rest of our lives. The satire has bagged a slew of awards and was a finalist for the 2019 Pulitzer Prize for Drama.
Making a return to the Belvoir stage are AFI Award-winner Tara Morice (Strictly Ballroom’s Fran), and Helpmann Award-winners Rebecca Massey (ABC’s The Letdown, Utopia), Amber McMahon (Belvoir’s Girl Asleep) and Mitchell Butel (Belvoir’s Cloudstreet, Angels in America). Joining them are Elena Carapetis, Tim Overton, and emerging talents Emma Harvie, Chika Ikogwe (Sydney Theatre Award Best Newcomer for Fangirls and The Wolves) and multi-award winner Yvette Lee.
Dance Nation is the work of American playwright Clare Barron, who grew up in a Shakespeare troupe in a conservative, Christian community in Washington State. Her work has been lauded for its examination of gender and sexuality. Director Imara Savage – who directed Belvoir’s Mr Burns – a post electric play, also a satirical exploration of society, in 2017 – has added a delightfully camp element to the on stage drama.
Dance Nation runs from March 14 to April 12 at Belvoir St Theatre.
Dance Nation is a co-production between Belvoir St Theatre and State Theatre Company South Australia
This article is produced by Broadsheet in partnership with Belvoir St Theatre.