Dance Nation

Season Finished
Scott Theatre

State Theatre Company South Australia and Belvoir in association with Adelaide Festival present

By Clare Barron

Subscribe to Season 2020

Power up, Ladies!

Somewhere in America, an army of teenage competitive dancers is plotting world domination. One routine at a time.

As the national title looms and the dancers fight it out for the lead role, reality and fantasy blur in this award-winning pageant of ferocious girl power.

Part-Dance Moms, part-Hunger Games, Dance Nation is a crushingly funny satire of ambition. The New York Times says it “conjures the passionate ambivalence of early adolescence with such being-there sharpness and poignancy that you’re not sure whether to cringe, cry or roar with happiness. Blazingly original and unsettlingly familiar.”

I’m thrilled that this show opens our 2020 season, thrilled that it’s a part of the Adelaide Festival and thrilled to welcome Tara Morice (Strictly Ballroom) back to the company. A fantasia of the female – feral, tender, hilarious, wise, brilliant and spinning. It will blow your sequins away. Mitchell


Dance Nation contains strong coarse language, adult themes, sexual references, loud sound effects, strobe effects, fake blood, smoke haze and theatrical effects.

Dance Nation is presented by special arrangement with Samuel French Inc, a Concord Theatricals Company.

Run time: Approximately 1 hour and 45 minutes (no interval)

“A hilarious, excruciating look back at pre-teen competition” Sydney Morning Herald

“A really snappy little show!” Daily Review

“A terrific show that is riddled with spontaneous full-bellied laughs” Stage Whispers

  • Venue Access

    Dance Nation is being held at the Scott Theatre at Adelaide University. Safe wheelchair accessible drop off/pick up area is in close proximity to the venue entrance. Click here to download a map that details the vehicle drop off point.

    The Scott Theatre has designated wheelchair accessible unisex toilet/s.


    Getting to the Venue

    The University of Adelaide, Kintore Ave
    (08) 8303 5151

    Public Transport
    Bus Stop G1 or G3 North Terrace – North Side
    Bus Stop T2 North Terrace – South Side

    For more information on public transport services, call Adelaide Metro on 1300 311 108, or download the metroMATE app, or visit

    Driving to your event?
    Visit UPark to find the closest car park to your venue. We recommend UPark Gawler Place.


    Food & Beverage

    A bar in the Scott Theatre foyer will serve S.C. Pannell wines and other refreshments prior to the performance.

    The venue bar will be open from one hour prior to the start of the performance. It will close shortly after the performance starts. There is no interval. The venue bar will only accept card payments, not cash.

    There are a number of restaurants and eateries in the vicinity of Scott Theatre. The closest eateries are at RCC Chow Town, which has been set up in the Cloisters at the University of Adelaide during the festival season.

  • Access Resources

    You can access a written version of the pre-show notes here and an audio version of the pre-show notes here. For more information about access and performance types, please visit our access page here.

    Audio Described performances

    • Monday 2 March, 7:00pm (pre-show briefing) for 8:00pm (performance)
    • Saturday 7 March, 1pm (pre-show briefing) for 2pm (performance)

    Book audio described performances online here.


  • Tangent

    Join our esteemed panel on Monday 3 February for our Dance Nation Tangent Talk – “Setting the Barre: Leaping and Falling through the World of Teen Dance”.

    >> Click here for full details

    Subscriber Briefing

    2020 Subscribers are invited to join us for exclusive Subscriber Briefings to learn more about the creation of the show.

    >> Click here for full details

    Matinee Club

    After selected matinee performances throughout the year, stay for our Matinee Club to hear the artists involved with the show. There is no additional cost, just stay in your seats after the performance.

    The Matinee Club performance for this show is on Thursday 27 February, 11am.

    Post Show Q&As

    We hold Q&As with our artists and creative teams so that you can ask questions about the production. A Q&A will be held for this show on Monday 2 March, 8pm.


Imara Savage

Set and Costume Designer

Jonathon Oxlade

Lighting Designer

Alexander Berlage


Larissa McGowan


Luke Smiles

Sound Designer

Andrew Howard

Accent Coach

Jennifer Innes


Mitchell Butel
Elena Carapetis
Emma Harvie
Chika Ikogwe
Yvette Lee
Rebecca Massey
Amber McMahon
Tara Morice
Tim Overton

Dates & Times

      • P
      • P
      • P
      • ON
      • K
      • AD
      • QA
      • AD
Opening Night
Audio Described
Keith's Matinee Club
Post-show Q&A