Bold & innovative, Darkroom Contemporary's distinctive approach makes this dance theatre company a leader in the production and development of contemporary dance in South Africa. The organization exists as a vehicle to reimagine dance as art form within the current contemporary society. With innovation and interdisciplinary collaboration at its core, the company produces works which delight, excite, engage and inspire.
Darkroom Contemporary was founded in 2010 by Louise Coetzer and Oscar O’Ryan, with the aim to develop work opportunities for the multitude of talented dancers produced by local training institutions. Coetzer, a dancer and choreographer, and O’Ryan, a photographer and filmmaker, bring together expertise from their respective fields to form a dynamic partnership. Darkroom Contemporary is recognized for delivering innovative, unexpected works of the highest artistic standard, simultaneously creating unique audience experiences and new ways of appreciating dance. The company regularly stages works in unexpected performance areas, transforming ordinary spaces into intriguing, multi-faceted arenas. Darkroom Contemporary’s dance film works sits alongside its performance projects, making the work accessible to a larger global audience through the medium of film and digital media.
Projects spearheaded by the founders provide platforms and creates opportunities for skills development and exchange among all artists involved. Project collaborators include dancers, physical performers, visual artists, sound designers, photographers, filmmakers and digital artists.
Darkroom Contemporary is dedicated to actively promoting and exploring dance theatre as art form, through performance, dance film, and education. Creating opportunities for performers, fostering collaboration between various creative disciplines, opening up dialogue between these creative practitioners, and offering opportunities for skills exchange, Darkroom Contemporary seeks to be a catalyst for innovation and preservation within the contemporary South African performing arts landscape.