First and lasts for Footnote
IT wasn’t a good start in dance for Lucy Marinkovich. She cried on her first lesson.
“I think I was a bit overwhelmed,” she says. “We grew up in Khandallah and my sister and I were sent to learn ballet because that’s what little girls did.”
Despite her initial misgivings Marinkovich stuck to dancing.
“I always really enjoyed the Christmas parades,” she confesses. “Two hours sitting on a float waving at people, I loved it. I’ve always enjoyed the performance part.”
At high school Marinkovich began to take dance more seriously. She made the move from ballet to contemporary dance and hip hop and at 15 was accepted into the junior associate programme of the New Zealand School of Dance. In her final year St Mary’s College she applied to study at the school fulltime as a contemporary major.
“My family are all sports people, but I wasn’t into sports at all. I think they were all a bit stunned that I was taking on a profession that required physical movement.”
Marinkovich joined Footnote straight out of dance school in 2010.
“I was lucky that a female dancer left the company at the end of my third year.”
She says the experience gained with the company has given her the confidence to present her first professional choreographed work Vile Bodies, based on Evelyn Waugh’s 1930 novel satirising young London society after World War I.
“Every older generation says of the generation coming through ‘what are they doing?’ I wanted to relate this to my generation and how we’re often criticised.”
Vile Bodies is one of six short works in Footnote’s latest Forte Series. Other pieces are by choreographers Michael Parmenter, Kristian Larsen, Maria Dabrowska, Lyne Pringle and Fleur de Their.
The show also features the work of some of New Zealand’s most talented musicians including Sam Hamilton, Eden Mulholland and Takumi Motokawa.
“It feels very special being part of this production and being given such an opportunity. It’s also pretty stressful looking at the names of those great choreographers on the programme, with my name beside them.”
It’s a stress Marinkovich may have to live with as her star rises. She’s recently been awarded the Eileen May Norris Dance Scholarship and next year plans to study in Israel with the Batsheva Dance Company and the Kibbutz Contemporary Dance Company.
“Both companies use the gaga technique of dance which I’m keen to learn. It’s a completely different technique that tries to establish a flow throughout the body allowing for complete fluidity.”
But before Israel Marinkovich has a full remaining year. After Wellington Forte Series travels to Christchurch in September and Auckland in October. She’s also in rehearsals for this year’s World of Wearable Art, and then heads to Germany with the rest of Footnote to perform at the Frankfurt Book Fair.
She says she’s mindful it will be her last year under her mentor Deirdre Tarrant who retires from the company at the end of this year.
“I’m really looking forward to working with [new director] Malia Johnston, and I just get this sneaking suspicion we won’t be seeing the last of Deirdre.”
Forte Series, Footnote Dance Company, The Boatshed and The Museum Hotel, August 15,16,20 and 21.