Consists of approximately 1,200 books and journals relating mainly to dance, but including drama, costume, theatre production, psychology, art, literature and cultural studies, as supporting material.
Includes materials relating to Margaret Lawrence's personal and professional life, including a handwritten notebook, handwritten notes on 16 cards, 3 photographs, 4 folders of clipping and dance articles, collected dance performance programmes (some with her annotations) and leaflets, birthday, Christmas and thankyou cards, postcards, copies of dance study and teaching materials, clippings from newspapers and magazines, bookmarks, catalogues from dancewear retailers and book distributors, meal menus, and receipts.
These collections provide a cohesive reflection of the influences behind the artistic creativity of Margaret Lasica’s career in dance.
Margaret Lasica migrated to Australia in 1939. She was an early pioneer of modern dance in Australia. Margaret taught at the Kindergarten Teachers College, Institute of Early Childhood Development, Melbourne Teacher’s College, Melbourne College of Advanced Education, and taught dance and movement classes for patients at Laurundel Psychiatric Hospital and private studios. She established the Modern Dance Ensemble, which under her guidance as artistic director had extensive connections with the University of Melbourne and Victorian Opera Company in the 1970s. The Ensemble performed in the Union Theatre, University of Melbourne from 1969. One former dance member was Lloyd Newson who founded the innovative dance company DV8 in London.
The Margaret Lasica Collection is a collection of books, journals and ephemera relating to the pioneering Melbourne dance choreographer and teacher, Margaret Lasica (1926-1993). The collection was donated to the Lenton Parr Music, Visual and Performing Arts Library (Southbank campus) by Shelley and Wendy Lasica in 2008.
Biographical information: Margaret Lasica was born Margaret Weiss in Vienna and migrated to Australia in 1939 with her family. Her family took the surname Wickham on arrival in Australia, and she later married William Lasica. Margaret was a student of Ruth Bergner and performed in the Modern Ballet Group in Melbourne in the 1950s. She was an early pioneer of modern dance in Australia. Margaret taught at the Melbourne Kindergarten Teacher's College, Institute of Early Childhood Development, Melbourne Teacher's College and the Melbourne College of Advanced Education. She taught dance and movement classes for patients at Laurundel Psychiatric Hospital as well as in private studios. She established the Modern Dance Ensemble in 1967, which under her guidance as artistic director had extensive connections with the University of Melbourne and Victorian Opera Company in the 1970s. The Ensemble performed in the Union Theatre, University of Melbourne from 1969. A former dancer in this Ensemble was Lloyd Newson who founded the innovative dance company DV8 in London. Her daughters continue to contribute to the performing arts - Shelley a successful choreographer and performer, and Wendy, an independant theatre producer.
Contents: The collection consists of over 800 titles - books, journals and ephemera. The collection covers a broad range of subjects including dance and human movement (choreography, notation, education, therapy, biographies, anatomy), psychology, art, history, philosophy, mysticism, music, theatre and costume.
Material from the Margaret Lasica Collection must be requested for viewing via the Cultural Collections Reading Room.
Viewing hours for the Cultural Collections Reading Room.
Enquiries: Contact Georgina Binns, Fine Arts and Music Librarian. Contacts: 03 9035 9050 or firstname.lastname@example.org
* Biographical information about Margaret Lasica is detailed in the Australian Women's Register.
* The Margaret Lasica Manuscript Collection is held in the National Library of Australia Manuscript Collection. These papers document Lasica's involvement with a variety of Australian dance companies, her professional reading and the Modern Dance History Project and Archive.
* In addition biographical cuttings are held in the National Library of Australia Collection.
* For further information about the Modern Dance Ensemble:
* Dancing in Melbourne in the 70s by Shelley Lasica in Kinesis 37:2 2009
* Margaret Lasica's Modern Dance History Project and Archive. Interview by Elizabeth Dempster. Writings on Dance No.4 Spring 1989.
Images from performances by Modern Dance Ensemble. Date unknown. Images from http://www.kinesismagazine.com.au/. Permission pending.