Perhaps it was the stars aligning, muses Sydney Dance Company Artistic Director Rafael Bonachela, admitting that it was pure luck that led the two works in the Company’s new double bill to share similar themes.

Orb, as it is called, features a pair of world premieres by Bonachela and Taiwanese choreographer Cheng Tsung-lung. “It is the first time in its 47-year history that a choreographer from Asia is creating a work on the Company,” says Bonachela.

Sydney Dance Company Artistic Director Rafael Bonachela Sydney Dance Company Artistic Director Rafael Bonachela. Photo © Pedro Greig

Cheng is Artistic Director of Cloud Gate 2, the youth arm of the internationally renowned Cloud Gate Dance Theatre of Taiwan, formed to showcase talented young dancers in original works by innovative young choreographers.

He grew up in Taipei where his family owned a slipper factory. Hawking slippers on the sidewalks was part of his childhood and adolescence. The dynamics of street-life would later become a source of inspiration for his choreography – though in his new work for SDC, he looks instead to the heavens.

Bonachela had been on the lookout for a while for someone to collaborate with...