About (2011)

Before Viewing

Bangarra’s production of About is inspired by the culture and practices of the people of Torres Strait Islands, focussing on the four winds of the Torres Strait  – Gub.


Pose questions that help them understand the ideas that the dance is based on?

  • What do you know about the Torres Strait?
  • Where are the Torres Strait Islands and how many are there?
  • Name some of the main islands?
  • Can you name a language of the Torres Strait?
  • From which island of the Torres Strait is the choreographer of About?

Expand students’ understanding that contemporary Indigenous people participate in all facets of the community and as artists they may choose to communicate ideas based on traditional stories, community issues and cultural practices.

  • How does the work of Bangarra help us become more aware of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Island people and culture?
  • What is a cultural advisor?
  • Who are the dancers of Bangarra? Where do they come from?
  • Where is the company Bangarra based?

What do students already know about body skills and what are some things that they can do?

  • Encourage the students to experience moving their whole body. Encourage the students to experience isolating different body parts: divide the body in to body zones focusing on head, chest, arms, hips and legs.
  • Ask students to use increasingly complex combinations of space including level, direction, dimension, shape, planes and pathways.
  • Encourage students to use combinations of time including: metre, tempo, accent, and phrasing.
  • Provide opportunities for students to use combinations of dynamic qualities including: sustained, percussive, suspended, swinging, collapsing, vibratory
  • Ask students to move both individually and with others; showing awareness of spatial relationships, groupings and in relation to other dancers and to objects around them.

Encourage students to identify and prioritise what they know about choreographic processes through:

  • encouraging students to use choreographic devices including abstraction, transitions, variation and contrast, and to recognise different forms and structures.
  • checking that students are aware that choreographers use the elements of dance to express intent.
  • discussions that encourage students’ recognition that dance can relate to its social and historial context.
  • assisting students’ understanding that there are specific protocols for viewing and performing Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander dances.

Based on Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority (ACARA) Level 4 statements from the Critical and Creative Thinking Learning Continuum: Inquiring – identifying, exploring and organising information and ideas; Generating ideas, possibilities and actions; Reflecting on thinking and processes; and Analysing, synthesising and evaluating reasoning and procedures areas. Licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Australia (CC BY NC SA) licence. Accessed April 2015.