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Temperance Hall
199 Napier St
South Melbourne, Victoria 3205 Australia

(03) 9645 9937
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Phillip Adams
Presented by Temperance Hall

Temperance Hall and Phillip Adams BalletLab present “Triptych”, a divine intervention of queer crucifixions inspired by Francis Bacon’s triptych paintings (1944–1986). Choreographer Phillip Adams draws parallels with Bacon’s use of life and death, beauty and violence, civilisation and barbarism.

“Triptych” is a subversive response to Bacon’s crucifixions, through choreography, film, and installation. The material and formal elements of the work draw from Bacon’s modernist depictions of psychosexual domestic bodies that can be read as masculinist, queer, libidinal, violent, performative, grotesque or ambiguous. Dancers enact duets of maniacal visceral tremoring that evoke the spectacle of horror – a distinguishing feature of Bacon’s oeuvre. Amidst a sphincter-sex-sling installation, performers portray Bacon’s theatrical and surreal imaginariums of the crucifixion in a Disney-esque, ballet parody of penetrations.

Amplifying homosexuality and the queer acts within contemporary dance, “Triptych” explores queer expression throughout art history as a reliable signifier of the ever-changing avant-garde.

17th March 7:30pm: Auslan Interpreted Performance and post-show Q&A (9.15pm).


Choreography and Artistic Director: Phillip Adams
Performers: Harrison Hall, Samuel Harnett-Welk, Benjamin Hurley, Oliver Savariego, Alexandra Dobson
Set Design: Paul Yore and Devon Ackermann
Costume Design: Toni Maticevski
Composers: David Chisholm, Duane Morrison
Videography: James Wright
Weapons: Matthew Bird
Producer: Anna McDermott
Executive Producer: William McBride

Image credit: “Triptych” (2023), Phillip Adams. Photo by 3 Deep with Georges Antoni.

View Artist Biographies

Phillip Adams is the artistic director of BalletLab and Temperance Hall. Throughout his 25-year career in dance and performance, Phillip has made a vital contribution to the richness of Australian performing arts. Phillip’s works offer a crucial point of difference — an alternative modality of fearless choreographic practice and risk-taking approaches to creation and presentation. Extending the parameters of dance and visual arts, Phillip draws on cross-disciplinary collaborations with music, design, fashion, architecture, cinema, and photography, and engages with unorthodox, queer and popular culture. Phillip’s work has been presented nationally and internationally, at leading festivals, venues, and museums.