The critically acclaimed The Dan Daw Show makes its highly anticipated Australian premiere at the Seymour Centre, in conjunction with Sydney WorldPride. It was named one of the five best dance shows of 2022 by The Guardian UK and was nominated for the 2021 Critics’ Circle National Dance Awards.
Dan Daw is an Australian-born, Queer, disabled artist living and working in the UK. He is the founder and Artistic Director of Dan Daw Creative Projects, which had a sell-out run of Beast at the Sydney Festival in 2018.
Shining an artistic light on the beauty and power of kink, The Dan Daw Show features ‘dominant’ and ‘submissive’ BDSM play, performed live on stage by Dan and his collaborator, Christopher Owen (Joe Moran, Scottish Dance Theatre).
Dan and Christopher share a vulnerable, powerful display of physical and sexual expression. This intensely intimate dynamic challenges us to reflect on our own biases. At the core of the show is an exploration of what it means for Dan’s body to unapologetically occupy non-disabled spaces.
In The Dan Daw Show, Dan dips his toes back into the kink scene after taking some time away. He had lost sight of who he was, and was struggling with owning his body in club spaces. As a result, this new show is incredibly significant to Dan’s personal kink journey, acting as a vehicle to create the ideal submissive/ dominant relationship he has always wanted for himself.
“In making this show, we’ve realised that my Cripness and my experiences of kink are very closely linked. Whenever I’m engaging in kink practices and when I’m performing, I’m unapologetic in the way I navigate space and inhabit my body,” says Dan.
“However, outside of these worlds, finding this freedom is much harder, because I’m living in a world that isn’t designed with my disabled body in mind.”
Dan explains this is essentially what the piece examines – the question, ‘What if I could feel this free all of the time?”
“The Dan Daw Show is… about me finally finding the strength of self to overcome the burden of shame to step into my power. We use the holding device of kink to allow us to talk about the nuances of care, internalised ableism, and interdependence at the same time as celebrating my ‘messy body’ in a way that nothing else can.”
“I’ve spent most of my life feeling shame about my body and feeling shame about what I’m into when it comes to fucking and playing. So we needed to make a piece that acknowledges the never-ending work of what it means to achieve, through interdependence, the feeling of freedom in a world that places no value on Queer, Crip bodies,” says Dan.
The Dan Daw Show is an intensely absorbing experience. This powerful story of care, intimacy, resilience, letting go and pride drew a well-deserved standing ovation from the entire theatre on its opening night.
Directed by Mark Maughan (The Claim, Petrification). Co-produced by Sadler’s Wells and supported by the NSW Government, British Council and Pride Foundation Australia.
Showing 23rd February and 24th February at the Seymour Centre. Book tickets here.