February 13th, 2017

The amount of work that goes into a final creative piece, is an artwork in itself. Here’s a snippet from behind the curtains of the ADC Squad Video, Misery - Sian x 

I walk into an immediate fluttering of red tutus. Petals all over the floor, hot glue-gunning, fishnets, voices from all corners, and other crazy happenings, scattered across the room.


Taking a place crossed-legged on the floor, Squad dancer Lisa and I glue rows of flowers onto head pieces. On my left Dorothy greets me - she's our resident superstar make-up artist - working on with our main man Ali who’s currently having his smoky eye shadow applied (whilst hoots and hollering can be heard throughout the room!). Then to my right, where all the last minute pinning and glueing to boobs, backs and bras is happening, I’m introduced to another ADC superstar, Jessica Lowe – our Costume Designer and behind most of the looks of our videos and RISE shows. The girls look amazing. It’s all go and I’m getting inspired by the excited buzz in the room.


The sun starts going down, and we get to packing. “I don’t think I’ve been quite this excited for a shoot before..”  ADC's Creative Director Kimberley paces the room in anticipation. As I wonder what to expect from the next phase of the shoot I over hear the girls sharing last minute tips - “Don’t clench your jaw”, “remember to look to the horizon line”, "don't lip synch!". Grabbing equipment, giant flowers, snacks, blankets and car keys we all head out the door.


We arrive at our secret location and the set is mysteriously and seriously gorgeous. A dark green courtyard straight out of the Queen of Hearts' Wonderland. The Squad step into the lights, each focused in thought and practice. Choreographer Kimberley gets busy setting the dancers into position, and discussing lighting and shots with another Dream Team member - ADC Videographer and Photographer Rafael Bonatto. I take a million phone photos and wait side-stage : bobby pins and blankets at the ready.


Everyone’s now in position. Lights, camera, action! Gwen Stefani's "Misery", rings out in the garden. Squad take their shapes and begin Round One. It looks incredible! I’m feeling all excited on the sidelines. Then, a few adjustments. Repositioning. Pinning. Changing lights. Everything has to be in line just right for the camera ensuring ultimate coherency. They dance again. Take Three. Take Four. Take Six.


Rain hits and the equipment has to be relocated into shelter but the Squad dance on! Take Seven, Take Fifteen... until everything fits just right.


And Boom: it all comes together. An incredible collaboration now in front of us as one epic art piece. At 1AM, they call it a wrap. Tired but satisfied. Next, we go to the edit room. No rest for us in this ever creative industry (just how we like it).


Watch the completed Misery piece and the fruits of all of our hard work, here.


-- Thank you ADC for allowing me behind-the-scenes to see all the hard work that goes into a shoot! To peek behind the curtain, opportunities are always coming up. Email our team - info@aucklanddance.co.nz -- who knows..it could be you-- next.



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