Throughout dance history millions upon millions of performances have been showcased in hundreds of countries around the world, however dance in the Aboriginal culture has lived long before the shows and performances. Bangarra dance theatre is a dance company based in Sydney’s Walsh Bay that showcases different aspect of aboriginal history. Still today Bangarra dance theatre continues to inspire and influence dancers across the globe whilst leaving their audiences in a state of oar and astonishment by their performances consisting of their unique choreography which combines modern contemporary sequences and traditional Indigenous techniques. Many intentions are portrayed throughout the production Ochres; however, they are split up into different section each being differentiated by colour. Through each colour they express a certain aspect of aboriginal life, culture and history. The yellow section reflects the everyday life in aboriginal culture, represents earth and the Aborigine’s connection the nature as well as suggest the roles in which women took part in at the time.

One aspect of the yellow section that is communicated through the performance is the aborigine’s connection to the land. The way Aborigine’s connection with themselves, their culture and their ancestors is through their connection to the land as they believe that once their ancestors have passed they are returned to the earth thus, allowing them to have a strong connection with the land itself. Majority of the routine is performed on a low level and consists of grounded floor work. The dancers weighted movements across the floor represent their attachment to the land. Their flowing sweeps and organic movements reflect nature itself and shows that with their culture they are one with the land.

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The Aboriginal culture is a close community of people that depend, rely and support eachother. Their community is represented through the movements in which they lean on each other portraying their dependency as a community. The way the same choreography is performed in unison resembles the way they move forward as a community together and help one another along the way.
For a significant amount of the performance the women perform a sequence of movements in which all are physically connected to one another at all times. Once again this shows how they depend on each other and together as a community help one another.

At the time men and women both had distinct roles in the community. Men were supposedly the hunters and women were the nurturers. Throughout this section the role in which the women played and their everyday life is identified through movement. In Aboriginal culture giving birth is a duty that women must do. To give birth there are struggles that women must experience to follow through. These struggles are represented in movement such as crawling, reaching and the contorted, bent representation of the human body. The circular motions resemble the action of gathering, once again suggesting the role in which women played at the time.

The yellow section reflects many aspects of the Aboriginal culture. The yellow section depicts the Aborigine’s strong connection to the land through the dynamic quality, this being the low levels and sustained, weighted movement, reflects the essence of their strong/close culture and their dependency of one another through identical choreography and physical connection within each movement and identifies the nurturing role in which the women played by gathering food and caring for the newborns.


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