Action Plan Meeting #1

Minutes from the BDAH Action Meeting on Saturday 30 November, 2013

This meeting was organised by Lizzie Vilmanis after being called by some of the attendees from the meeting from the 9th of November 2013.  It was held in the ACPA Board Room from 9am-11:30am (many thanks to ACPA for their support).

Attendance – Lizzie Vilmanis, Zaimon Vilmanis, Erica Rose Jeffrey (facilitated meeting), Casey Crockett (co-facilitated meeting), Tiina Alinen, Elise May, Mariana Paraizo, Anja Ali-Haapala (recorded minutes)

Apologies – Nerida Matthaei, Liesel Zink

The purpose of this meeting was to continue the conversation from the last BDAH meeting (Saturday 9 November, 2013). The agenda included:

  1. 1.      Introductory visioning of the independent dance landscape
  2. 2.      Identification of this group’s desired actions
  3. 3.      Strategic planning to initiate momentum to implement these actions



Tiina Alinen acknowledged the Traditional Land Owners, the Nunukul and Yuggera people.

Erica Rose explained that today’s meeting was to be used as “visioning time” where we would begin to identify the direction that we would like to see Brisbane Independent Dance move towards. In 2014, we will look to include more voices in the conversation. There is the ongoing question of how to activate more voices in the Brisbane Independent Dance community.



Visions for Brisbane Independent Dance, what we value, and what excites us.

The dominant themes that came through:

  • More connection and communication within the community
  • Raising the Brisbane Independent Dance identity, visibility, profile
  • Partnerships and relationship-building

Fuller list of what was mentioned:

  • Inclusivity, visibility, transparency and diversity
  • Building exposure on local, national and international levels
  • Building a Brisbane Independent Dance identity that is recognisable for people who are not part of the community
  • Small initiatives developing into bigger things
  • Community building – connection between people
  • Physical community (as well as the online community)
  • More sharing of resources between funded companies and independent artists
  • Independent dance festival
  • Diversity of practice
  • Valuing these meetings
  • Recognition that failure is ok – this ‘Action Plan’ group might not get things right the first time, but at least we are trying.
  • Valuing the trust of the community
  • Cohesive community that supports each other




The dominant themes that came through:

  • Having a space/home for Brisbane Independent Dance.
  • Having a festival to help build identity and exposure on many levels.

Fuller list of what was mentioned:

  • Big studio centre that puts all dance organisations together
  • Arts centre
  • Arts precinct
  • Festival
  • A big arts networking thing
  • Central dance resource centre
  • Recognition of dance elders
  • Balance of the proportion of Australian arts funding with the population of states



Project ideas:

  • Recognition of dance elders
  • Stage 1 choreolab
  • A version of solo series
  • Play Date 2.0
  • Dance Debates
  • Share your practice sessions (cross-disciplinary)
  • Stage 1 festival building
  • Guerrilla mash-ups
  • Bring a friend gatherings
  • Snapshot research of the Brisbane Independent Dance landscape
  • Start a relationship with Brisbane City Council for big vision projects
  • Continuing/developing the online conversation/questions
  • Reintroduction of Metro Moves (perhaps in an online format)
  • Daily professional classes (perhaps subsidised by Ausdance)
  • Documenting all the Brisbane Independent Dance activities/events through a platform that is accessible to the public


(Note – Lizzie presented Nerida and Liesel’s emails that they had sent in prior to the meeting, their desired actions were added).



At this point in the meeting we focused the discussion on one of the short term project ideas and, essentially, brainstormed.

Short term project idea: GUERRILLA MASH UP

This project consists of bringing together approximately 15 dance-makers and 15 artists of other practices and randomly put them together for a one day intensive to explore that cross-disciplinary collaboration. The artists would work in spaces around the city (wherever is free) and would come together for an “evening takeover” of one building (e.g. an old warehouse, the Judy, etc.) where they would present their collaboration to a public audience. This presentation could be a performance, a pitch, a film, an installation, even just a discussion about what they have exploring during the day. There could be a prize along the lines of a “golden gorilla”. Non-dance artists could be notified/found through organisations like Arts Link, Play Lab, QUT CI and could include disciplines such as fashion, theatre, music, visual arts, circus.

This project could have three stages:

Stage 1 – all local artists and no money involved (all volunteer and in kind support).

Stage 2 – same format as Stage 1 but with government funding and/or business grants.

Stage 3 – applying for larger grants and opening it up to interstate crossovers where 15 Sydney-siders (for example) would come to work with Brisbane artists and 15 locals would go to work with Sydney artists.

Some considerations:

  • Due to no money, initially it would need to be a one day collaboration however as funding grows it could develop into a three day collaboration.
  • People could get involved as a collaborating artist, volunteer or audience member. Call outs could be online, in person and through the above mentioned organisations.
  • The “golden gorilla” (obviously a pun with the “guerrilla” nature of project) – is there a way of turning the gorilla into a more appropriate representation of QLD identity?
  • Documenting all stages of the project – filmmaker to capture the collaborations throughout the day/evening takeover?



At this point in the meeting some questions were raised about the role of “BDAH” and its branding – i.e. should these short term projects be under the BDAH brand? This led to a discussion that clarified the role of BDAH.


  • A platform for communication where newcomers can find the Brisbane Independent Dance community and where locals can stay in touch.
  • BDAH is a place where we can have discussions about projects happening around the place as well as brainstorm future projects (like today’s meeting).
  • BDAH is not about putting its brand on the projects that may develop from these meetings – i.e. the Guerrilla Mash Up won’t be “BDAH Guerrilla Mash Up”.
  • Independent Dance focus – perhaps need to rename BDAH to include the word “independent”?



Where do we go from here?

  • Something for the future – in order to continue to open up these meetings there will need to be a mailing list will need to be created (as not everyone is on facebook).
  • Coordinate a big Brisbane Independent Dance social gathering in February 2014 with three aspects:

1) Social aspect – getting the broader independent community together

2) Information aspect – clarifying BDAH as a communication tool

3) Action aspect – gathering the broader independent community’s ideas about potential projects and starting that action process

  • Who – as many people as possible (independents, producers, organisation representatives)
  • Venue – 1st preference Room 60, 2nd preference ACPA studio


  • Lizzie to approach Room 60 re: big social gathering (beginning of February 2014)
  • Zaimon/Lizzie to make an event page for planning meeting (in lead up to big social gathering) – Saturday 25 January, 9:00-11:30am.