Artistic Director Amy Hollingsworth took it as a sign that finally the planets had aligned when on opening night life imitated the art of a full moon backdrop transitioning to an eclipse. The exploration of conflicting aspects of the human condition is what unites these stylistically and tonally disparate works. As well as, of course, the commanding ensemble of dancers who are equally riveting performing individually or in unison.

Australian Dance Collective
Alterumby Melanie Lane. Photo © David Kelly

World premieres by two Australian choreographers are first up. Melbourne-based Melanie Lane’s Alterummakes a cutting-edge statement, with a hybrid of futuristic and primal elements and an original ambient electronic score by UK artist (Chris) Clark. Its arresting opening juxtaposes a red-washed tableau à la The Matrixagainst the shadowy primordial first steps of a sinuous figure (the mesmerising Chase Clegg-Robinson). The black trenchcoats and shades symbolise a supernatural second skin that drives us beyond our limits, which is shed to reveal a clinging bodysuit and our bare instincts to connect and protect. There may be a retro nod in...