Monday June 26, 2017

JAYDEN HICKS puts a ‘Contemporary’ Spin on an American Classic Tale as choreographer for the Australasian Premiere

‘Tour de force’ Jayden Hicks is taking the Australian dance industry by storm. While lyrical is a style that he has developed a love for, Jayden has trained in all disciplines of dance from classical ballet to pole dancing! He cites his broad training as the driving force behind the development of his concepts and movement. With an impressive repertoire of work, Jayden is still only a young dancer and with each new venture, continues to prove why he is one of Australia’s rising stars in contemporary dance.
StageArt’s The Color Purple is significant for Jayden as it marks his first foray into choreographing for music theatre. However, he is no stranger to the company. Jayden first started working with StageArt in 2011, as a dancer in their original show Mátalor: A Hard Rock Dance Opera, and again two years later as choreographer for StageArt Xposed – Wild Eagles Fly Alone. He is excited to bring his experience from the contemporary dance world into the musical theatre scene and collaborate with StageArt Producer, dancer and The Color Purple director, Robbie Carmellotti.
Robbie contacted Jayden late last year with an exciting offer to work
on a touching and heartfelt Australasian premiere, with culturally diverse performers. The Color Purple, which is currently on Broadway, provides ample opportunities for
innovation and originality. Jayden cites his successful working relationship with Robbie as the impetus for the creation of his beautiful imagery and movement to compliment the profound storyline.
He explains, “the show doesn’t need bells and whistles, just artists that are willing to invest in the story and be able to feel that through their bodies.” With a joyous score featuring jazz, ragtime, gospel, African music and blues, StageArt’s The Color Purple will be a colourful fusion of choreographic disciplines and styles.
Jayden’s involvement in The Color Purple is a real divergence from his typical dance roles. He is excited at the opportunity to create his own work, developing concepts and movement for actors rather than performing them himself. The production brings its own unique set of challenges, since dance expression and feeling is superseded by voice, drama and overt narrative. Jayden will have to familiarise himself with the capabilities of each of the 15 onstage performers and work with their specific skillsets to create an aesthetically pleasing and entertaining show.

StageArt’s most recent production of Titanic received rave reviews, wowing audiences across Melbourne. Producing consistently high quality and rarely performed musicals over the last five years, StageArt’s The Color Purple aims to continue this tradition of not only achieving but exceeding the expectations of theatre goers.
We can’t wait to see what Jayden has devised for this premiere!

StageArt presents The Color Purple, Thursday 13 October until Sunday 6 November 2016 at Chapel off Chapel, 12 Little Chapel Street, Prahran.
Bookings: 03 8290 7000.

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