Zsuzsi Soboslay has a practice built over 25 years in theater and movement, teaching expressive improvisation and uncovering stories, songs and histories that haven’t yet been told. She specialises in collaborative work across disciplines and has a special interest in the stories of immigrants and refugees, as well as experience of place. Her joy is in helping people recognise and move what is in them and around them, becoming aware of the dialogue and support this gives. Having suffered traumatic injury in 2002, she is well aware of many people’s longing to move and just what is possible in spite of limitations and injury.
She has been an arts writer for over 20 years; works as a director and mentor via the Street Theatre; won an inaugural Artists-in-Schools—Early Childhood residency (ACT) and other Residencies at Bundanon Artists’ Colony, Canberra Dance Theater and the National Film and Sound Archive, and has choreographed community and outdoors dance/theatre work in Sydney, Canberra, Lake George, Tidbinbilla National Park, and on the beaches of Wollongong. In 2013 she began teaching mixed abilities classes for Canberra Dance Theater and for Belconnen Community Services.
In 2015, she is in preparation for her major theatre project, Anthems and Angels, with a performance development in April at the Street Theatre, Canberra [funded by ArtsACT]
She then takes up an Australia Council Community Partnerships-funded secondment with Entelechy Inclusive Theatre Company in London [May-August]; an Artists’ Residency at Parramatta City Artist Studios, and act as artistic adviser/facilitator with the Parramatta Female Factory Precinct Memory Project. http://www.parragirls.org.au/female-factory.php
She will also seed collaborations for The Welcome Project: inter-city performance collaboration on the situation of refugees.
In 2009 she began a long-term collaboration with Synergy Percussion (Sydney), and helped them achieve the ABC Limelight Award for Best Concert in 2011. They are currently in preparation for their 40th Anniversary Concert, Xenakis vs. Pateras, Carriageworks, Sydney, April 22-23 2014.
Recent performances include a solo dance-biography of the life of Jane Avril (a favorite of Toulouse-Lautrec) for the National Gallery; Dance Ecology work (in collaboration with Holly Diggle, musician Richard Johnson, and artist Tony Sweeting) for Dance/Science week at the CSIRO; short flat long black/white, a refugee cabaret with Somebody’s Aunt (You Are Here, and Smith’s Bookshop, for refugee week); Under Milk Wood at The Street Theatre; and Anthems and Angels, on land/soundscape, memory and exile, a performance installation with Synergy Percussion and film-maker Mike Chin, scheduled for 2014.
Zsuzsi was recently accredited with Action Learning Associates UK as an Action Learning facilitator. She has worked as a bodywork therapist and counsellor for over 20 years, currently running clinic and workshops in Canberra, Sydney and Wollongong. She is enrolled in a PhD on “Ecologies of Inclusion” via Monash University, creating a large-scale performance on the experience of post-WWII refugees to Australia, in collaboration with visual artists and musicians. Zsuzsi is also setting up The Welcome/Unwelcome Project on the current situation for refugees. www.bodyecology.com.au
Secondment with Entelechy Inclusive Theatre Company, London , May-August 2015.
Funded by Australia Council Community Partnerships grant; http://www.entelechyarts.org/
Participant, EXPAND regional arts intermedia development workshop, 2014-15. http://southeastarts.org.au
HIVE script development programme, Street Theatre, Canberra.
Recipient of mentorship in the Street Theatre’s First Seen development programme for Anthems and Angels [May 2014]
Selected participant in Kultour Gathering, Brisbane,September 9-11 2013 (presenting Anthems and Angels)
Monash University Postgraduate Research Scholarship, 2012.
“Incubate” residency for cross-art-form collaboration, Canberra Dance Theatre, January 2012.
National Film and Sound Archive, Research Fellowship, May-June 2011.
Bundanon residency, November 2009, with percussionist Timothy Constable
ArtsACT grant to support Bundanon Residency (2009)
Artist-In-Residence (Early Childhood Schools), ACT, 2009
Australia Council development grant (to Japan) 1995; Arts ACT residency grant (2009); APA Research Award (Department of English, University of Sydney, 1984-5)
Trinity College Licentiate (L.T.C.L.) and AMEB Associate (A.Mus.A.) music diplomas (1979, 1980).
WATER/SELF/other. Knowing Water Symposium, Abbotsford Convent, Melbourne, August 28-29, 2013.
Inside/Outside: re-thinking our biology
CSIRO DANscienCE Week, August 2013.
An illustrated lecture discussing dance ecology as an ethical practice–what one considers whilst engaged in such a performance. How does this relate to other ecological practices?
(see details under Recent Presentations)
Joined Melbourne Urban Water Performance Group, July, 2013. Outside eye and writer for their Body of Water intervention, Queensbridge Square, Melbourne Food and Wine Festival, March 1-2, 2014
Balance/Unbalance Conference, and Floating Land arts/environment event, Noosa, May 2013
Gudgenby: Traces at Craft ACT (Opening speaker), Craft and Design Centre [May 2010]
“Re-membering the invisible: landscapes of healing in the therapeutic process”. Illustrated lecture given to Canberra Jungian Society (August 14, 2009)
Biophilosophy: Towards an Ecology of Practices Conference, (Canberra, Humanities Research Centre, August 2004)
“Shamanic awareness, self and ‘other’” SLAM2000 (Melbourne)
L’Optimisme: an illustrated performance/lecture on the life and art of JAne Avril-daner at the Moulin Rouge and patron and muse to Toulouse-Lautrec (see details under Recent Presentations)
Teacher, Canberra Dance Theatre, special needs children and teens groups (2013)
Assistant, BUD! project, holiday special needs programme and performance at CSIRO for DANscienCE Week, August 2013.
Teacher, Belconnen Community Services and Belconnen Arts Centre mixed ability movement and recreation classes (2013)
ACT Artist in Residence pilot programme, Early Childhood Schools: teaching movement/relaxation, creativity, story-telling, drawing, puppetry and puppet-making to children years pre-K-2, O’Connor Co-Operative School, ACT.
Curatorial work, and oral histories
The Centenary of the Griffin Plan (New Parliament House, May-June 2012; National Capital Authority, 2012ff)
Immigration histories: Trial Bay Gaol and WW1 Internment Camp (full Stage 2 interpretation, on permanent display, South West Rocks, NSW, 2010-11);
Bonegilla: The Migrant Experience (Permanent exhibition + documentary film, Albury Wodonga, 2005; site heritage listed 2009).
Film research and editor/director for Bonegilla: The Migrant Experience (20-minute documentary on permanent display)
Exhibition and catalogue editor
Olympic Cities Old Parliament House, Canberra, 2007; People of the Cedar National Museum of Australia, 2006’ Beaconsfield Museum, Albury Regional Library, Sydney Water.
Oral Historian, Northside Community Services oral history project, 2007 (with families of children with disabilities)
Lecturer—including performance-making [new work], performance and film theory, linguistics and philosophy, movement training, text-based and environment-specific work: Environment Studio, ANU School of Fine Art (2004); Victoria University (2000-2002); Central Queensland Conservatorium of Music (1996); School of Drama, VCA (1990); Universities of Melbourne (1996-99), Wollongong (1991-6), Sydney (1992-3), NSW (1988-89), and Macquarie University (1987-8). Courses since 1991 self-devised.
Artist-In-Residence [movement/theatre/puppetry/storytelling], O’Connor early childhood Co-Operative School, ACT (2009).
ref Monash CV-2013 for descriptions