On Slow Haunt (2021/23):
'There is so much creative brilliance in Slow Haunt, it must be seen in all its glory. Magnificent.'
Rita Clark, Limelight
'Independent Australian choreographer Melanie Lane has conjured a completely mesmerising, yet deathly underworld landscape with eight of WAB’s dancers who she drives through states of unrelenting suffering and immense power to achieve her slick and accomplished new work.Overall, it feels like a standout achievement in its design and execution.'
Jo Pickup, ArtsHub
'There is an emotional intensity and resonance to Lane’s work. As an audience, we’re almost holding our breath in anticipation of what’s next.
Lane’s Slow Haunt is a methodological and deeply important work that spans the breadth of classical and contemporary technique as it disrupts and unites its dancers and audience, in equal measure.
Courtney Allen, Dance Life
'The much-awarded and sought-after choreographer Melanie Lane’s Slow Haunt was a triumph. Superbly balanced, effectively constructed and marked by first-rate choreography, this work unfolded in the “acts of sensuality, desire, resistance and rage,” that she had sought.
This piece, created specifically for the West Australian Ballet, exemplifies the filmic quality Lane brings to her work,building in intensity and drama until you can’t tear your eyes away.
Rita Clark, Limelight Magazine
'… a new work from award-winning contemporary dance artist Melanie Lane excited me because – as Lane notes – independent contemporary dance artists rarely have the opportunity to work with ballet companies.
The result, Slow Haunt, demonstrates that bringing these two worlds together opens up new vistas for 21st century ballet.'
Nina Levy, Seesaw Magazine
On Jagad (2022):
'There is something so abjectly human yet absolutely divine about Melanie Lane’s choreography and how it is embodied by the dancers.'
Leila Lois, ArtsHub
On Alterum (2021):
'Lane is fascinated by the superhuman capabilities of the body but what makes her work affecting rather than merely impressive is that she is also supremely sensitive to how society – life, really – affects that body and that mind. While her work may look very strange at first, its power lies in the reach towards something more than the ordinary.'
'The dancing in Alterum was powerful and athletic filled with seemingly impossible poses and strong, dynamic arrangements. And for most of this performance, the audience appeared to hold their breath - not wanting to burst the spell that was being cast. Come interval, we all sat for a while unable to unstick our bodies as our minds processed the power of what had just passed before us.'
JC, Weekend Notes
On Woof (2019):
'WOOF is a delight...exhilaratingly unusual movement, brilliantly executed'
Jana Perkovic, The Age
'Melanie Lane’s startling and inspired WOOF – the final part of the program – is an outstanding piece of contemporary dance and an artistic triumph; inventive, bold and memorable.'...'it dazzles and delights – a joyous foreshadowing of the potential of Sydney Dance Company’s next half century.'
Richard Watts, ArtsHub
'The evening ends in electrifying fashion with WOOF, which was clearly the crowd-pleasing highlight on opening night.
Lane’s fabulously detailed choreography is constantly surprising, as groups form, shift and reform...
WOOF is a stunning, wildly inventive work, that flashes past so quickly you feel it has ended all too soon.'
Jo Litson, Limelight Magazine
'The absolute highlight of the evening for me was Lane’s somewhat eccentric work WOOF. ..it reminded me of a contemporary version of Rite of Spring. It was an outstanding work that generated an exceptional audience response.'
Michelle Potter, 6.04.2019
'Lane’s choreography is masterfully artful and yet deep dream touching in its humanity.'
Martin Portus, Daily Review
'From the very beginning of this wonderfully rich work, the audience was held spellbound and aware that the moments of silence and stillness were as important as those of the ferocious and dramatic expression to follow.
The Adelaide audience responded to each of the magnificent performances by the Sydney Dance Company with thunderous and sustained applause, WOOF receiving a standing ovation at the conclusion of a magical night celebrating 50 years of Contemporary Dance.'
Berenice Norris, Global Media Post
'Melanie Lane’s WOOF sweeps all before it. Who knows what the title means? Who cares? Now a touch longer, WOOF ends well before you want it to, testament to its appeal.
Even at its most eccentric – that would be the hip-swivelling prancing on demi-pointe – WOOF has glamour to burn.'
Deborah Jones, April 7 2019
On Nightdance (2017):
‘Lane, in her Night Dance, not only presents a multitude of possibilities through the interweaving of people, space, and longing, she also brings out a physiological intimacy that can be internalised, and self-contemplated by her audience. And, as an artist whose practice revolves around this relationship – between body and objects- she manages to offer a mesmerising and daring experience, complete and satisfying.’
GRACE FENG FANG JUAN, Peril.com.au 29/08/2017
‘Nightdance is the most rhythmically breathtaking performance I’ve seen this year, and potentially of all time. It’s uniquely its own thing, and you simply cannot tear your eyes away from it.
Lane and her team have successfully produced something hyper-modern and totally memorable.’
Leeor Adar, Theatre Press 06/09/2017
'Nightdance is filled with secret dramas and impenetrable mysteries the way that any dancefloor is, and it’s stitched together with the tight but invisible logic of a dream. And like a dream, when you’re in it you don’t question why this carefully but inexplicably costumed character appears at one point, because there’s an emotional sense to it that’s beyond waking thought. That Melanie Lane successfully puts her audience in that state is a rare triumph, and one that won’t be forgotten.'
John Bailey, Real Time Magazine 29/08/2017
'Watching Nightdance offers the uncanny experience of simultaneously seeing something one has never seen before, and something one has seen many times… it is genuinely exhilarating to see this sensibility appear in contemporary dance in Melbourne'
Jana Perkovic, The Age
On Wonderwomen (2016):
'Wonderwomen creates something extraordinary, even if the very ordinary phrase has to be used here now: the staging succeeds in breaking open habits of perception'...'in several respects, this is a rare and powerful performance.’
Steffen Georgi, Leipziger Volkszeitung
On Re-Make (2016):
'Lane’s more graceful and sombre Remake takes the classical grammar of ballet and strips it of its usual trappings… an engaging and tantalising entrée to the possibility of inventing an entirely new dance language.'
Paul Ransom, Dance Informa
'Together, ceaselessly rolling a rock to the top of a mountain in the spirit of Camus’ philosophy of the absurd, this was what collaboration is all about: two artists creating a third work not possible without the other.'
Gracia Haby, Marginalia
On Merge (2015):
'High calibre, truly flawless in their surrender to this nihilistic entourage, boasting strong technique and anchored presence. Bolstered by the electrifying music of Chris Clark and held in its ominous temperament by the exciting lighting of Matthew Adey, Merge is a work that is both abstract and accessible in a truly mesmerizing fashion. A world worth seeing.'
Nithya Iyer, Melbourne. Arts. Fashion
'Choreographer Melanie Lane has created a tightly-wound, meticulous work featuring four dancers… Merge is grounded in a powerful rhythmic structure that complements thoughtful choreographic choices.'
Jordan Beth Vincent, The Age
On Tilted Fawn (2012):
'… in her own Tilted Fawn she delivers an experience quite unlike the various threads that have been woven through Australian choreography of the last decade.
There’s a mythic quality to the work which reveals itself coyly, and it’s as cool and inhuman as true myths always end up being … The referents are never made explicit but it’s hard not to fashion your own interpretation of each configuration presented, and the cold, closed nature of these depictions subtly shifts its audience into a position of meditative spectatorship that allows us to forget our own corporeality.'
John Baily, Real Time Magazine
'Perth truly is honored by the presence of an artist as such as Lane, who in collaboration with a celebrated musician, has created a piece that is not only physically innovative but also an emotive sensory journey for the audience.'
Sarah Dunstan, PerthNow
'Tilted Fawn is an effective piece within Lane’s growing oeuvre forming a choreographic relationship between objects, sound and visual design. This collaborative effort with CLARK is visually engaging, cerebrally challenging and aurally intricate.'
Astrid Francis, Artshub
'Melanie Lane and Chris Clark’s Tilted Fawn from Berlin carries its light and shade with sophistication….Dance lineage seems to situate this intervention, illustrating layers of recall which involve intertextuality as well as intimacy.'
Maggie Phillips, Real Time Magazine