Michelle Ryan started dancing when she was four years old, and went on to be one of Australia’s most celebrated dancers. At 30, at the peak of her career, she was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis. Although MS has irreparably damaged Michelle’s physical prowess, it cannot undermine a lifetime of physical artistry and creative expression.

In Intimacy, Michelle shares her most private thoughts and feelings in a very public way. Performing alongside dancer Vincent Crowley with a live score by Lavender Vs Rose, this dance theatre work is a fictional stage for Michelle’s real-life daily experiences; a world where highly awkward, absurdly humorous and deeply moving moments manifest in unexpected ways. Where others are not sure where to look and how to help.

As Michelle becomes increasingly vulnerable, she is both more isolated and more in need of the help of others. Who will take this dance with her?


Intimacy is a triumph of passion and diversity over adversity. Real, raw and tender, Intimacy is a celebration of doing, of loving, of being human.

Winner of the  2015 Australian Dance Award for Outstanding Achievement in Independent Dance: “an exquisite, compelling and immersive production exploring intimacy and human relationships within disability in a personal, honest and provocative dance theatre performance.”

Winner of the 2015 Adelaide Critics Circle Award for Independent Arts Foundation Individual Award-Professional Theatre: Michelle Ryan

Created and devised by Torque Show in collaboration with Michelle Ryan and Lavender Vs Rose.

Directed and choreographed by:

Ingrid Weisfelt and Ross Ganf

Performed by:

Michelle Ryan

Vincent Crowley

Emma Bathgate

Simon Eszeky

Lighting design:

John Ford

Set and costume design:

Adrienne Chisholm

Images by:  Rachel Roberts


Malthouse Theatre : August 2014

London Southbank Centre, Queen Elizabeth Theatre: September 2014

Adelaide Festival Centre: October 2015

“I have lived and worked with people with disability for many years and have a keen eye for the superficial and tokenistic, and approach any work of art 'about' disability with skepticism. The experience of watching Intimacy has profoundly shifted that way of thinking - this is art: deeply moving, full of meaning, made of light and shadow, beautiful and confronting to watch - a work of shared humanity that lifts the conversation out of correctness and form and into a new way of seeing another's experience.”

Jane Geltch, State Manager,  National Disability Services

Watch Now

“Moments of genuine intimacy keep this experience alive in the head for some time to come”

Real Time

“A polished , touching and thoughtful piece”

The Australian

“Intimacy is one of the most moving and courageous performances you are ever likely to see.

With Intimacy, directors Ingrid Weisfelt and Ross Ganf have created a production that is visually appealing, life-affirming and incredibly moving. The music, movement and warm humanity will have a powerful effect on every individual privileged to experience the show.”

In Daily