News and Events

Launch of All-In, our inclusive youth dance programme for 12-19 year olds in Shropshire

We are thrilled to launch our new inclusive youth dance project ‘All-In’

All-In is a series of taster dance workshops in 2019 to build towards the exciting launch of our inclusive youth dance company in 2020. If you are a young person with or without disabilities in Shropshire aged 12-19 who is passionate about dance, come along to our workshops in Shrewsbury.

The sessions will include moving, creating, choreographing and sharing together. They will be led by experienced practitioners who are skilled in leading enjoyable and accessible dance sessions.

When: Wednesday 17th April, Tuesday 13th August, Monday 28th October 2019.

Time: 1:30-3:30pm

Where: The Gateway Education and Arts Centre, Shrewsbury

Cost: £3.50 per person

Each of these sessions will be unique so feel free to join us at one or all of them. Booking is required and places are limited.

To reserved your place, complete the booking form here

For more information contact Kim at Shropshire Inclusive Dance at officesidance@gmail.com or call 01743 234976

 

Contact Dance Company begin an exciting new performance project with dance artist Jo Fong.

Contact Dance Company performers spent two fabulous & creative days with Jo Fong, gathering ideas for a new piece to be premiered by the company at Theatre Severn in the summer.

Jo Fong invited the dancers into her physical, energetic, and dynamic style of dance.

How close can we dance together?  How small can our dances be?
How much noise can we make while we dance. Can we all dance in this tiny space here?

lowjpg16

Jo’s invitations to move were enthusiastically accepted by the company dancers.
Dances of an incredible range were explored over the weekend, subtle small dances in pairs, wild chaotic dancers with the whole company in small spaces, moments of quiet tenderness, lots of laughter and applause, the work was beautiful, powerful and funny to witness.

lowjpg23

Jo Fong is a director, choreographer and performer working in dance, film, theatre, opera and live art. Her eclectic career includes performances with DV8 Physical Theatre, Rosas (Belgium) and Rambert Dance Company.

 

Talking about her work Jo states’

‘The work creates shared experiences, as an audience member, performer or as participant. It seeks to invite an open exchange and immediacy through arts creation and opportunities that aim to promote and support inclusivity and the value of art to everyone’

20180306-IMG_9204

 

Jo Fong and Contact Dance Company are a great match. Jo, during the workshop shared her observation of the incredible physical and creative connection shared between Contact Dance Company dancers. Jo likes to see the work she is making with Contact Dance Company,  with all its diversity, connection, humanness and dynamism, as the future, the new normal.

 

 

 

SiD board seeks a treasurer

SiD are seeking a Treasurer to join their board, could you be part of the only inclusive dance company in Shropshire?

Shropshire Inclusive Dance (SiD) has an established board of directors who have the skills and expertise to drive the development of this company. We are now looking for a treasurer to join our board.  This is a voluntary position requiring commitment and an interest in the arts.

To be our Treasurer you must be a finance professional who has knowledge of charity governance. As part of our board you will be joining a friendly team who are committed to supporting an ambitious local organisation. You will be supported in your role as Treasurer through training, away days and assistance from the company accountant.

We would love to hear from anybody who is interested in the role, please get in touch!

officesidance@gmail.com

01743 234 976

 

SiD’s Film ‘A Bridge Between Us’ shown at The Breaking Down Barriers Film Festival in Moscow

SiD’s short documentary film ‘A Bridge Between Us’ was shown at  The Breaking Down Barriers Film Festival in Moscow.

‘A Bridge Between Us’ created by filmmaker Jonathan Tritton, documents a performance of duets by Contact Dance Company. The film explores what it means for performers to dance together and the skills needed to find a strong connection when making and performing dance. In the film,  dancers with and without disabilities share the connection they feel with each other through physical touch and through an invisible connection across the dance floor.

 

20181109-_DSC7390

The film can be viewed here.

SiD Co – director Ray Jacobs presented the film in two venues in Moscow as part of this ground breaking Russian film festival. The film was very popular and received great feedback. Russian and international attendees were interested in how SiD worked as a company and many international invites were received !
Ray also ran a master class inclusive workshop, sharing some of Contact Dance Company’s practical and creative approaches towards building connection between dancers.

The Breaking Down Barriers film festival, is an important international event. The festival shared over 80 films that explore, reveal and celebrate disabled peoples lives through fiction and documentary films. The festival was very well organised including a brilliant team of volunteers and translators for international visitors. SiD would like to thank the British Arts Council in Russia for supporting us. The festival was a great networking event and new contacts, opportunities and partnerships were forged.sIS

Contact Dance Company perform TwoFold at the Feast Festival in Malvern

A full house at the festival witnessed Contact Dance Company’s absorbing and powerful programme of duets ‘Two Fold’. The programme featured;

‘Unspoken’ An intimate duet about friendship. How do we speak without words?

‘While you broke through to other worlds’ A duet exploring the dynamics and polarity between two people, the pull to strive ahead, the fear of being left behind.

‘Father Daughter’ a celebration of the real life connection between the two dancers.

The programme also included a beautifully made short film about the duets entitled
‘A bridge between us’ created by filmmaker Jonathan Tritton.

The programme culminated in a trio ‘The details in the hands’.

Dance development leader Elizabeth Crosswell and her son were in the audience

I came to watch Contact Dance Company at the Feast Festival at Malvern Cube Theatre with my 4 year old son, we were mesmerised. 

 I’ve never seen him sit on the edge of his seat like that before, watching the duet between Rachel Liggitt and Mervyn Bradley unfold. Out of the corner of my eye, I saw him softly mirroring movements from the dancers, as a parent your instinct is to hush, to worry about disturbing the performance for others, but this was his response to the performance and my instinct said let him be.

His response came from the environment the performers had created, by connecting with us, the audience. They made us feel a part of it, drawing us into a duet for two, but we were also immersed in the moments of touch, the friendship, the meeting and parting. 

 The dancers were beautiful; from the measured, dynamic movements of the all-male duet, to the warm flow of the structured improvisation of the trio. I wanted to dance in that trio too, they made it look like so much fun. The way they connected with us as an audience is to me a huge part of what dance is about. The moment when the father proudly shows off his baby girl to the audience – we shared that pride with him. We see the love and care danced together when his daughter joins him later in the duet. It’s just magical.

 I thought it was brilliant that the dancers were available to chat with the audience after the performance. Unfortunately I had to dash off for the school run, but I would have loved to have asked about the process and how the work was created.

Please thank all the dancers for their wonderful performances. I was so grateful to have been able to see such high quality dance in such an intimate venue.

Shropshire Inclusive Dance would like to thank the feast festival for inviting us to be part of a very special festival and JTV for supporting our production with high quality lighting and sound.

Images from the duets Father Daughter and Unspoken. (photography Ray Jacobs)

 

 

 

 

 

 

VERSE-atility – A music and dance project for young carers.

Shropshire inclusive Dance were invited by the Hive to be part of this exciting and rewarding music and movement project. SiD’s outreach team led by Anna Belyavin worked alongside fantastic musicians from The Hive to facilitate workshops where young carers could compose, record and choreograph a piece – all in a week!

The project, funded by Youth Music, began with a series of music and dance workshop tasters to groups of young carers throughout Shropshire. Those young people interested in the project and free to spend a week at the Hive signed up. The young people grew in confidence over the weeks activity. Working with dance and music offered time for the young people which was social, fun, creative and challenging.

The young people, musical and dance facilitators worked hard together as a very special team creating a supportive environment full of creativity.

The young carers say that the most important thing for them is “to be around other people who have a lot in common with us” and “to be able to express myself creatively, without judgement”.

Phase one of the project culminated in a brilliant performance by the young people.

We feel the footage in the film below and the accompanied images speak much louder then words. Sit back and enjoy.

 

 

Images from the project.

 

 

workshop images – Ray Jacobs

Unknown Places – Performance at Wolverhampton Arena, October 10th 2018

‘Unknown Places’ Contact Dance Company’s most recent ensemble piece, choreographed by dance artist Joanna Young, made a welcome return to the stage at the Arena Theatre in Wolverhampton.

IMG_6666
Unknown Places – image Ewen Macintyre

This evocative and absorbing piece was performed alongside an improvised trio by Contact Dance Company titled ‘The details of the hands’. The piece was structured and inspired by Joanna Young and accompanied with sensitive and powerful live music by folk duet Deuair.

IMG_6644
Details of the hands – Image Ewen Macintyre

Shropshire Inclusive Dance’s co-director Rachel Liggitt has been in residence with ‘Dance Unity’ sharing some of the working methods in Contact Dance Company’s pieces and some of the ideas behind ‘Unknown Places’ The influence of the work became immediately apparent as Dance Unity took to the stage sharing a dance piece full of connection and elegance.

IMG_6591
Dance Unity – Image Ewen Macintyre

The final work to be performed was Contact Dance Company’s
‘Unknown Places’. The cast of 8 very individual dancers moved through shifts in mood & dynamics from subtle swaying and careful placing, to the creation of wild eddies of movement across a crowded dance floor. The piece demanded discipline and connection from the dancers, which was there for all to see.

‘A dancer moves slowly within a circle while delicate strands of lavender are precariously balanced on her. A male dancer moves and slides a large boulder through his arms, a ripple of bamboo poles balanced on dancers bodies provides a gentle rhythmic accompaniment’

 

20181010-_DSC6633 copy
Unknown Places – Image Ewen Macintyre

The dance was accompanied by a subtle and dynamic soundscape by Jamie McCarthy.Contact Dance Company performed Joanna Young’s absorbing and finely placed work with commitment, focus and energy. Members of the audience present at the premiere of the work shared the following thoughts.

‘The new work was a wonderful piece of ensemble movement: focused, reflective, contemplative, infused with the presence not only of each dancer, but also the presence and energies of the natural world’

 ‘At times it felt like the piece was showing to me the ever moving qualities of the whole of humanity’

20181010-_DSC6613 copy
Unknown Places – Image by Ewen Macintyre

 

Unknown Places by Contact Dance Company is available for festivals and theatre venues.