Image: Matt Byrne

Shifting Perspectives

Restless Dance Theatre

Restless Dance Theatre is Australia’s leading creator and collaborator of dance theatre by dancers with and without disability. Led by Artistic Director Michelle Ryan, an award-winning artist with disability, Restless creates and presents loud, strong, and original dance theatre nationally and internationally. The work is collaboratively devised, inclusive and informed by disability. Our artists invigorate, influence, and diversify Australian dance. Restless brings artists with diverse minds, bodies, and imaginations together to create contemporary dance theatre from everyday lived experiences; manifested into beautiful art, embedding inclusion into our screens, on our stages and in unexpected places. Restless Dance Theatre is a place where diversity is celebrated, and all artists thrive creatively.


Lighting has been an integral part of recent Restless work. In 2020 our work Seeing Through Darkness was part show, part lighting installation.

In this new work, Shifting Perspectives, light artist Matthew Adey from House of Vnholy and Michelle explore light and reflection to create a new innovative installation and dance theatre work that asks the audience to contemplate how a stationary body can become a moving body and vice versa.

The installation is a grid of 25 mirrored plinths with the grid laid out equal distance from each other creating a labyrinth maze of reflections. The 25 mirror plinths are all on turning lazy susan-style bases.

The dancers move among the forest of swivelling mirrored plinths as the audiences’ catches glimpses of different performances from different aspects even while being still. The moving mirrors enable the dancers to control what the audience see and challenge the audience’s viewpoint. Being exposed and obscured the audience is free to wander while experiencing the constant changing environment.

The work will be suited to galleries and black box spaces. When the dancers are not performing, the gallery/performance venue goes into installation mode and audiences can enter the space, explore the mirror installation wall as well as seeing a beautiful 8 min projection of the live work on one of the walls. Having both the live work and the installation means audiences can witness the work at any time of day.

“I am interested in how mirrors reflect and distort the human form and the trickery of light and reflection. The work explores how we can play with bodies in the context of mirrors and how the dancers can become an extension to replicate each other while being completely separate”. Michelle Ryan

Session Times
PROFILE: Here’s Our Idea
Friday 9 June, 11:30am AEST


Roz Hervey