The Seymour is home to three diverse arts companies who develop and present work in our spaces. Their dynamic, creative approach makes them companies that we are proud to be associated with.
The Sydney Improvised Music Association Inc. (SIMA) is a not for profit incorporated association.
Formed in 1984, it is hard to overestimate the importance of SIMA to the Sydney jazz scene. The number of gigs it has organised in that time is also impressive but raw figures don’t begin to tell the whole story.
The organisation has been a crucial anchor for improvised music in the city, a constant and dynamic presence
SIMA – led with extraordinary determination, energy and strategic adroitness by Peter Rechniewski – has always put the art form and the musicians first. It has championed veteran artists of importance, such as Bernie McGann and John Pochée, and consistently encouraged younger players to develop their talents by giving them opportunities to perform in front of sympathetic audiences. The Necks played one of their first gigs for SIMA.
While maintaining an unstinting commitment to Sydney’s music culture, SIMA has never been parochial. Indeed it has embraced and celebrated the international nature of jazz, presenting and touring many important overseas artists from North America and Europe, including Dewey Redman, Geri Allen, Andrew Hill, Steve Lacy, James Carter, Oliver Lake and Horace Tapscott. Local musicians often performed with these significant figures, occasions that sometimes had the unintended consequence of emphasising their own originality and prowess.
SIMA has also regularly presented adventurous ensembles from other parts of the country and fostered good working relationships with organisations, such as the Melbourne Jazz Co-op, that broadly shares its objectives.
There have been numerous problems with venues and funding over the past 25 years but SIMA has proven remarkably resilient. The best bit is that the story is far from over – there is a lot more music to come.
For more information visit sima.org.au
Shaun Parker & Company
Shaun Parker & Company is an exciting and bold new dance company led by award winning Artistic Director and Choreographer Shaun Parker.
Despite being in its inaugural year of operation, Shaun Parker & Company enjoyed much international success, touring to no less than ten venues including London’s prestigious Sadlers Wells.
The company’s first major production, “Happy As Larry” (2010) — pro duced as part of the Australian Major Festivals Initiative — enjoyed sell out seasons at the Sydney Festival, Perth Festival, Brisbane Festival, New Zealand International Arts Festival, and Dance Massive in Melbourne. To date Happy as Larry has won 12 children’s Jury awards in Perth, the Honourable Banksy Award in New Zealand and was nominated for the 2010 Australian Dance Award “Most Outstanding Achievement in Choreography”. 2012 is looking to be just as an eventful for Shaun Parker & Company. Productions in the works this year include contemporary music & dance work “AM I” with key collaborator and composer Nick Wales; the outdoor work & short film, “Spill” for the International Festival of Birmingham; “Trolleys” (an aptly titled ballet of shopping trolleys for the London Cultral Olympiad); “The Yard”, a collaborative street-dance work that sees 33 Western Sydney School Children reinterpret William Golding’s “The Lord of the Flies”; and at the end of the year the company will be developing a new production in Rio.
We are a key organisation with the Australia Council and supported by Arts NSW Trade & Investment, City of Sydney and the Seymour Centre.
For more information visit www.shaunparkercompany.com
Since its formation in 2005, Critical Stages has grown to become one of Australia’s leading producers of touring theatre from the independent sector.
Critical Stages brief is to make outstanding theatre accessible to audiences around the country. To achieve this we have been successfully touring independent theatre to regional, remote, urban and rural audiences in every state and territory around the country for the past ten years.
We champion independent theatre artists and companies around the country and assist them in extending the life of their work, and we support regional communities giving them access to high quality theatre that they would otherwise not be able to access.
The company’s goal is to make exceptional theatre accessible to audiences everywhere, extending the life of outstanding productions. Scores of artists are engaged on Critical Stages touring productions every year, traveling to perform in hundreds of towns from Darwin to Launceston, and Karratha to Lightning Ridge to tens of thousands of audience members every year.
For more information visit www.criticalstages.com.au
Sport For Jove Theatre Company
Sport For Jove Theatre Company and the Seymour Centre announce that Sport For Jove is joining the Seymour Centre as a new resident theatre company; joining existing Seymour Centre resident theatre company’s Critical Stages, SIMA and Shaun Parker & Company.
In just 6 years, Sport For Jove Theatre Company has grown into one of the largest independent theatre producers in Sydney, with an expanding indoor and outdoor theatre season of classical theatre and an active education program consisting of theatrical productions, symposiums, workshops and in-school residencies that over 20000 NSW students participate in each year. Sport For Jove is appreciative of the Seymour Centre offering this unique opportunity, providing a permanent home in Sydney for Sport For Jove productions allowing for growth as a company and working towards fulfilling our core artistic mission.
A renowned arts organization, the Seymour Centre has an impressive 35 year history of presenting, promoting and developing great Australian performances, the Seymour is now a dynamic urban hub for quality arts experiences presented in one of Sydney’s most relaxed and accessible theatre environments. Located in the heart of the University of Sydney the Seymour Centre champions cultural exploration, arts education and audience engagement, presenting a diverse range of the best of contemporary performing arts; we host major festivals, present large-scale theatre, music and dance performances and partner small and emerging companies to develop and present innovative independent productions.
For more information visit www.sportforjove.com.au