- Family Background:
- Frances is a descendant of the Kokatha Tribe from the West Coast of South Australia and is also of German descent.
This year, Frances was appointed Associate Artistic Director at Bangarra.
In 2002, Frances made her main stage choreographic debut for Bangarra to outstanding critical acclaim with the Rations bill of Walkabout. Frances has followed this by creating 6 works for the company; Bush (co-choreography), Unaipon, X300 and Artefact.
In 2004 Bulletin Magazine named Frances in their Smart 100, following the world premiere of her work Unaipon at The Adelaide Festival of the Arts. Frances has choreographed works for many of Australia’s leading Dance Companies including West Australian Ballet and Tasdance as well as continuing a successful Independent career. Frances has danced in works by many of Australia’s leading choreographers and companies including Meryl Tankard, Leigh Warren, and Legs on the Wall.
Internationally Frances has been fortunate to establish important intercultural relationships with both Kahawi Dance Theatre and Atamira Dance Company in Auckland, New Zealand. She was most recently invited as guest collaborator and performer for their production MITIMITI, Choreographed by Jack Gray.
In 2015 Frances choreographed her seventh work for Bangarra titled Sheoak as part of lore - dance stories of land and sea program.
Frances directed her first end of year production for NAISDA Dance College titled, your Skin, my Skin in 2014 following with Kamu in 2015, From Sand to Stage, 2016 and Restoration in 2017.
In 2016, Frances was appointed Head of Creative Studies at NAISDA and directed the re-staging of her 2012 work Terrain for Bangarra’s Parramatta season and the company’s regional tour of Western Australia and South Australia. Recently Terrain has been selected on the 2019 – 2021 NSW Higher School Certificate Dance Syllabus. In 2018, Frances has been invited to choreograph a new work for Atamira Dance Company (NZ) as part of a triple bill titled: Kotahi.
Her awards include: Best New Australian Work at the 2003 Helpmann Awards for Walkabout; the 2003 Deadly Award for Female Dancer of the Year; and the 2004 Ausdance Award for Outstanding Achievement in Choreography for Unaipon. 2010 Helpmann for Best Regional Show for True Stories. In 2011, Frances received a Green Room award for Artefact. Her full-length work for Bangarra Dance Theatre, Terrain won the Helpmann Award for Best New Australian Dance Work and in 2017 a Helpmann for Best regional Show.
Frances’s latest work for Bangarra titled, Sheoak won Best New Dance Work and Best Choreography in a Dance Work at the 2016 Helpmann awards.