Meryl Tankard, icon of Australian dance, meets the award winning Restless Dance Theatre

There are many meanings for the French word Zizanie: discord, mischief, chaos, stirring up trouble, messing around, messing about…. It can also mean weeds.

“But weeds are just flowers in the wrong garden”. Grayson Perry

And trouble starts when the guy next door thinks he always knows best. In his garden, order comes first, there’s no place for weeds, or trouble, or fun. If he wants to keep out all that is wild, unruly and disruptive, what a sad place that would be. He can build a wall to keep out the zizanie, but life will find a way in. And life, in all its forms, is beautiful. With evocative imagery and enchanting illusion, Meryl will work with designer Jonathon Oxlade and visual artist Regis Lansac to create a whimsical world where a mesmerising tale for the family unfolds.

Venue Format
Theatre, Black Box Venue
Technical Rating
Touring Party

The work features evocative projection created by Regis Lansac and Chris Petridis.

Led by Artistic Director Michelle Ryan, one of Australia’s leading dance artists, Restless Dance Theatre creates high quality real, raw and uninhibited dance theatre. It is Australia’s leading dance theatre company working with young people with and without disability to collaboratively create outstanding inclusive dance theatre informed by disability. The company presents unexpectedly real dance theatre works in multiple mediums to diverse audiences.

Restless has developed a way of working where participants are given a series of creative challenges and asked to respond in movement. Dance sequences are then built up from their responses. This produces unique, distinctive and very striking dance through a process that nurtures the creative voices of the dancers.

Restless artists enliven and diversify Australian dance. The dancers create original and remarkable work that extends the definition of what dance is.

2016 marked the 25th anniversary of Restless Dance Theatre.

"...exceptionally beautiful and highly skilled, often funny, and always moving" - Robyn Archer

Company Website

Unique Selling Point

Meryl Tankard has an impressive track record of creating original and arresting dance theatre. Restless Dance Theatre is known for its stunning productions of real, raw and uninhibited dance theatre: “The work itself is exceptionally beautiful, highly skilled, funny, and always moving.” Robyn Archer The combination of a choreographer of the standing and experience of Meryl Tankard with Australia’s leading dance company making work informed by disability will set a new benchmark of quality in this area of practice. The dancers of Restless are charming, engaging and unique. The individuality of the artists is a major strength of the company.

Marketing Materials

A full list of resources is available to Presenter including marketing copy, high quality images, reviews of past works, video footage etc. The premiere seasons of Restless productions are audio described and this script can be made available to Presenters and we encourage Presenters to offer an Auslan interpreted performance.

Community Engagement

“Restless changes attitudes to disability every time it performs”. Noel Jordan (Artistic Director, Imaginate Festival, Edinburgh)

The company has made a huge contribution to broadening the range of people participating in, and experiencing, the arts by providing more varied and greater access.

Restless Dance Theatre will develop an innovative and meaningful community engagement strategy alongside the work to ensure that audiences are engaged deeply and will benefit from the experience for the long term. Restless runs an extensive high quality workshop program and has a long history of delivering community workshops and extended residency programs. Restless can work with these existing skills as well as innovate by thinking more creatively about how it engages with its audience before during and after the performance presentation.