Dally Messenger: saluted
Let’s face it, Dally Messenger has never been one to hide his passions. Indeed, he much prefers to sport them on his shirt sleeve for everyone to see. Well, we all struck lucky there, because one of the greatest of these emblazoned passions is, of course, ‘The Dance ‘. Or rather dance and people, both of which he insists on being sincere and truthful and free of ostentatious airs and pretence. Indeed, Dally is one of the least pretentious people I know, though it is a salutary lesson to see him in action if he feels an injustice has been done. My goodness, how that energy and enthusiasm got us all through deadlines that were due last week, disasters at the printers, colour separations that turned out looking like Molly Meldrum the day after he didn’t get to interview Michael Jackson, and those interminable all-night paste-ups!
What a debt we owe him – what an enormous hole there would be in our history were it not for the magazine he set up, against all the odds, all those years ago. I am constantly indebted to him; for the easy reference Dance Australia provides when I need information; for the way in which the magazine has drawn the dance community of this huge, sprawling land of ours together so that we can at least know one another, if only through words and pictures; for the no-holds-barred advocacy of dance and his refusal to listen when it was seen, by too many people, as the ‘poor relation‘ of the arts. Perhaps most of all, though, I value his and Marj’s friendship. For George and Jessica and me it was, and is and
always will be, a special part of our lives.