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James Welsby

Saint Sebastian

James Welsby: HEX



























The piece involves three Generation Y contemporary dance artists traversing the arc of the HIV/ AIDS crisis (circa 1981 – 1996) to better understand contemporary issues of health, identity, community, and history.


This project aims to combine contemporary dance with queer performance languages; HEX takes queer performance out of the nightclubs and places it within a contemporary arts forum that can critically engage with the work’s themes whilst remaining accessible for non-arts audiences.


The work embraces humour, reverence and intense sorrow, in a series of intimate, choreographed vignettes. These vignettes seek to provide the audience with an experience of both celebration and reflection as the show depicts evolving club-dance styles that coincide with the timeline of the Western HIV/AIDS epidemic.

Images: Gregory Lorenzutti & Alice Hutchison

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hex credits



James Welsby: HEX

Next Wave Festival

Fortyfive Downstairs
6 - 11 May 2014


Choreograper: James Welsby

Performers: Chafia Brooks, Benjamin Hancock, James Welsby

Sound: Claudio Tocco

Lighting & Set Design: Rose Connors Dance

Stage Manager: Anastasia Ryan

Costume: Bryn Meredith

Research assistant: Dion Kagan

Associate Producers at Next Wave: Kristy Ayre & Kyle Kremerskothen


Hex video



“Not leaving a moment unconsidered, Hex had the audience transfixed. The choreography was as hypnotic as it was intelligent and the dancers moved it beautifully”


★ ★ ★ ★ ★ 

Leonard Miller Toorak Times May 9 2014


“HEX is a powerful work that looks at the AIDS crisis from a generation away, and explores its legacy and impact.”

Hex review: the Aids crisis revisited through dance

★ ★ ★ ★ 

Jane Howard The Gaurdian May 8 2014


“Hex explores the pain and struggle of fighting against adversity. It is also a joyful celebration of what it means to be free.”


★ ★ ★ ★ 

Mark Brandi Arts Hub May 12 2014


“Welsby, a graduate of the Victorian College of the Arts, made a handful of full-length works before Hex, but none have resonated as well. Hex is an enormous step up and forward, and a sign of his promise as a dancemaker.” 

James Welsby – Hex (part of Next Wave Festival) – Melbourne

Jordan Beth Vincent Dance Tabs May 15 2014



Hex writing
hex rehearsal images

Rehearsal Images

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Images: Gregory Lorenzutti
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