Our ‘Create’ group had its final class of the autumn term last week. This term we have really celebrated the joys, creativity and connection in moving and dancing together. There have been some beautiful dances, giant leaps forward and much shared laughter. Huge thanks to the participants, they’re carers, the creative team and everyone involved in the class. There are a few places in this Wednesday morning class for next term, we particularly invite people with disabilities who need extra support in participating. Big thanks go to Condover Ciollege who have supported their residents in attanding the classes, Musician Mani Wells who has played beautiful live music and the SiD team Ray Jacobs and Becky Pringle
On Friday 24th September, Contact Dance Company performed a new duet as part of the FEAST Festival in Malvern. ‘Skirting Around The Edge’ performed by dancers Beth Gardiner and Anna Belyavin, is a lyrical exploration of connection and boundaries. The two dancers navigate the space, exchange glances and like so many of us during this time, experience being together after a long time apart.
The packed FEAST festival audience who were enjoying a sublime selection of poetry, music, performance art and physical comedy were entranced by the dance piece and the dancers. The audience were there with the dancers for every swing, turn, leap, touch and thanked them with rapturous applause at the end of the piece.
Skirting around the Edge, directed by SiD’s co-artistic director Rachel Liggitt was accompanied by the beguiling music track ‘Vardeldu’r by Signor Ros. Contact Dance Company continue to make dances which share the power and importance of human connection at a time when everyone needs it.
Shropshire Inclusive Dance are accepting bookings for this new work please contact firstname.lastname@example.org with enquiries.
Images by Ray Jacobs
Shropshire Inclusive Dance is proud to present a series of duets filmed live during our shows. First we would like to share with you ‘Human Range’.
In July 2019 we premiered two new pieces to a packed audience at Theatre Severn, Shrewsbury. The show began with this powerful and playful duet’.
It is performed by Delphine Wise and Poppy Mansfield. The work was choreographed and directed by SiD’s co artistic directors Rachel Liggitt and Ray Jacobs.
The piece explored notions of Human Range, how far can we reach ?
The music is by Nils Frahm.
The duet was beautifully filmed by JTV Production
Today we are shining a light on dancer Nick Robinson. Nick travels from Wales to England each week, on a Thursday, to attend SiD’s dance class. He leaves 2 hours ahead of the class to get to class on time and because public transport options are limited. He is passionate, dedicated and loves dance. He has been doing this since SiD began in 2012. Nick you are amazing. Each week we will shine a light on a dancer – their commitment, their passion.
‘Contact Dance Company’ have begun rehearsals for a brand new dance piece entitled ‘Being Seen’, to be premiered at Theatre Severn on July 20th, 2019
Choreographer, Jo Fong, is working with a cast of eight dancers with and without disabilities, to craft this new dance work. Jo, who has worked with international companies such as Ballet Rambert and the Welsh National Opera, has been enjoying day one of rehearsals:
‘It’s so exciting to be at The Hive in Shrewsbury, with Contact Dance Company. It feels like a brand new era for the company- something fresh and energised. I’m finding myself constantly inspired by the dancers’ generosity and creativity’.
Amal Neffi, a company dancer with a disability, reflects on the first day working with the choreographer.
‘We challenged ourselves as dancers, learning how each other move, and building our confidence to work in close contact, supporting, moving and listening to each other.
The new dance, ‘ Being Seen’, will be a treat for Shropshire audiences. Contact Dance Company has built a strong reputation for its powerful brand of contemporary inclusive dance, full of depth and connection. Choreographer Jo Fong wows audiences with her refreshing, energetic and playful dance-making; the combination promises to be a feast for the senses.
Audiences for ‘Being Seen’ performances will be invited to sit close to the action. Shropshire Inclusive Dance co artistic director Ray Jacobs states:
‘It’s really important that audience members see the details of the dance and feel the connection between dancers. The smallest gesture, the qualities of contact between dancers, is a delight to watch. Witnessing the show will be a sensory experience’.
This new dance piece is funded by Arts Council England and Shropshire Council.
Seats for ‘Being Seen’ can be booked via the Theatre Severn box office or online here but hurry, tickets are going fast!
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?
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.
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’
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.
Shropshire Inclusive Dance warmly invites you to a performance by Contact Dance Company, makers of powerful and moving inclusive dance
The performances is at the Arena Theatre in Wolverhampton
on Wednesday 10th October.
‘Unknown Places’ explores how we can navigate, compose and find comfort within the unknown.
The piece has been choreographed by award winning dance artist Joanna Young and is performed by our talented ensemble of disabled and non-disabled dancers.
Recent performances of this show by Contact Dance Company has received rave reviews
‘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’
Contact Dance Company.
The tickets at £5 each can be booked from the Arena box office on 01902 321321 or online following this link
Arena Theatre, Wulfruna Street, Wolverhampton, WV1 1SE
The Arena Theatre is a wheelchair accessible venue.
How to get to The Arena Theatre:
The Arena Theatre is situated in the heart of Wolverhampton City Centre, directly behind the Wolverhampton Art Gallery and next to the University of Wolverhampton’s Wulfruna building. The theatre is completely accessible by road.
The nearby Broad Street car park is open 24 hours a day and costs £4.50 for 24-hour parking. Parking is £2 after 5.30pm.
If you don’t have change available, you can download the RingGo app directly to your smartphone. The code for Broad Street is 8035.
Wolverhampton train station is a just a five-minute walk away from the Arena Theatre.
Friends, family, dancers, artists, managers, organisations, board members and many more gathered for the launch of our two-year dance program ‘Growing Together’ funded by Arts Council England at the Hive, Shrewsbury.
What a heart felt, friendly and joyous event it was – community spirit felt very much alive and kicking as we celebrated our recent funding success.
Ray and Rachel warmly welcomed attendees followed by a sharing of SiD’s story so far, highlighting key events and achievements. The co-directors then outlined plans for the two-year program ‘Growing Together’.
One of the main highlights was the premier of SiD’s film ‘A Bridge Between Us’, an outcome of SiD’s duet project Two To Tango. The film produced by JTV Production received excellent feedback and needs to be shared wide and far.
The evening ended with the revealing of a massive cake shared and enjoyed and lots of chatting with old friends and new.
An event to remember.