Growing Together with Aya Kobayashi

Contact Dance Company and friends were lucky to be the recipients of two days of workshops led by dance artist Aya Kobayashi on April 5th – 6th.

Aya began her training in Japan before enrolling at the Rambert School in London. She has performed with companies and choreographers that include Flexer & Sandiland, Rosemary Lee, Charlie Morrissey, Kerry Nicholls, Pete Shenton, Gecko and Lila Dance.

Aya has also presented her own work at Tate family festivals, the Sanriku International Festival in Japan, and regularly teaches for Independent Dance, Greenwich Dance, Brighton Dance Network, Oxford Collective and various universities.

Aya has choreographed touring works for Anjali and has supported guest choreographers including Maresa von Stockert, Amit Lahav, Luca Silvestrini, Lea Anderson and Gary Clarke.

We were delighted to be joined by dance artists from the West Midlands region and dancers from The Blue Room based at Bluecoat house in Liverpool.

Over the two days Aya led the participants into a deeper understanding of their own bodies leading them into new ways of moving.

Aya shared objects, pictures and films that helped develop a richness in movement dynamics and articulation.

Aya used props from sources as unlikely as a coathanger to give us a sense of width and weight, to water filled balloons to give us a sense of softness, to watching the elegant walk of a tiger.

The two days workshops culminated in the use of costume to enhance, explore, eschew, force and inspire different ways of moving in solo duet and group forms.

It has been a delight to welcome guest artists to lead workshops for us and regional colleagues, dancers and artists to participate with us. We would like to thank
‘The Gateway’ in Shrewsbury for hosting three of these workshops.

We hope to curate further guest workshops in the future.

Images from day two of the workshop are below. Photography by Ewen Macintyre.

 

 

 

Growing Together – Open Workshops

Shropshire inclusive Dance invites you to ‘Growing Together’  

Spring Open Workshops

 A series of workshops led by highly skilled practicing professional dance
and performance makers, 

open to disabled and non-disabled dancers

The workshops will take place at The Gateway Centre in Shrewsbury.

 The aim of our workshop series is to support, inspire and stimulate dancers and practitioners in their ongoing development as performers, facilitators and dance makers. The Workshops will pay particular focus on movement exploration as a source for improvisation, dance making, performance and inclusion.

A limited number of places are available to dance practitioners, with at least 2 years dance experience and an interest in inclusive practice, to join Contact Dance company members in an explorative workshop setting.

Joanna Young
Ways of being in unknown places
Wednesday 21st February, 10am  – 4.30pm.

Working with improvisations and scores (creative movement tasks and instructions), open to individual and a group interpretation, the workshop explores how we can navigate, compose and find comfort within the unknown.  Co-creating an environment of care, sensitivity and intrigue, this workshop is a place to be tactile, playful and curious around the relationship between bodies, objects and environment.

Joanna has a passionate interest in collaborative and inter-disciplinary work as well as the facilitation of creative process in others.  Her approach to facilitating is inclusive, generous and responsive.  Exploring our full sensory range within a somatic and improvisational process the workshop aims to re-arrange our modes of perception and the borders we create around things, places and people.

Jo Fong
Ways of being together
Monday 5th March, 10am – 4.30pm

 ‘Ways of Being Together’ investigates the idea of Belonging by moving together – I’m interested in meeting people, encouraging awareness, listening and noticing. These workshops are part of a larger conversation about inclusivity and participation… thinking about what it is to thrive both individually and as a community.

I believe a sense of belonging is intimate and powerful, connected, optimistic, unknown and curious making. And at this time it seems essential to work on our Ways of Being Together. Please join me!

Jo Fong is a director, choreographer and performer working in dance, film, theatre, opera and the visual arts. Her eclectic career includes performances with DV8 Physical Theatre and Rambert Dance Company. Recent collaborations include working with Wendy Houstoun, Welsh National Opera, Hull Dance and Quarantine.

As an independent artist she has toured her choreographic work throughout the UK and international venues. Her work has been recognised and awarded by The Critic’s Circle National Dance Awards, Creative Wales Award and Wales Theatre Awards.

 Aya Kobayashi

The whole body in spontaneity and play
Wednesday 4th April, 10am – 4.30pm

Aya’s workshop will explore the embodiment using whole body with sense of spontaneity and playful characterisation.
We may use some materials to make wearable sculpture or object. Through improvisations and various games we will explore the effective choreographies with the particular materials.

Aya is an independent dance artist working in the field of performance and movement exploration. As a performer she has worked with choreographers/ companies  including Rosemary Lee, Charlie Morrissey, Lila Dance, Kerry Nicholls, and Pete Shenton (New Art Club) and Gecko Theatre.

Booking details

 Cost per workshop

£50 – Participants from funded dance organisations

£40  – Dance Professionals

£20 –  Concessionary rate for low waged dancers / participants.

Booking is on a first come first serve basis. Booking can be made through

Email : directorsidance@gmail.com

Telephone : Rachel Liggitt 07855931214 or Ray Jacobs 07817194644

Venue Details: The Gateway Centre, Chester Street, Shrewsbury SY1 1NA

The venue is fully accessible. The venue is close by to Shrewsbury train Station.

Car Parking can be found nearby at

Raven Meadows, Shrewsbury SY1 1PL or Frankwell Quay, Shrewsbury SY3 8HQ

A suggested accommodation list can be provided if overnight accommodation is required.