ONE Magazine | Autumn 2022

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Dear members and friends, This Autumn edition of One focuses on ‘Innovation’, and there was certainly no shortage of content. We have all seen first hand how our sector embraces the new, developing inspiring ways of thinking and connecting with partners and audiences.

We recently celebrated the fantastic achievements of many innovative dance professionals at the One Dance UK Awards, held on 29 October at The Mount Without in Bristol. Congratulations to all nominees and award recipients and huge thanks to our event sponsors and supporters – turn to page 10 to read more.

There are also other reasons to celebrate. The National Institute of Dance Medicine and Science (NIDMS), a truly innovative network supporting dancers’ health and wellbeing, celebrates its 10year anniversary with a special feature in this edition (page 50). HOTFOOT, One Dance UK’s magazine for dance of the African Diaspora (DAD), recently

celebrated 21 years of publication. This edition of One includes a special HOTFOOT feature with a range of articles from key DAD community voices sharing stories of innovation and inspiration (from page 37).

On a more reflective note, as we head into a tough winter, particularly for those who most need support, One Dance UK continues advocating for you and working with partners to ensure all of our programmes have accessibility at their heart. Read more from Child Poverty Action Group’s Georgina Burt on page 34, and learn about further work with neurodiversity in dance from Prof. Almuth McDowell on page 46.

Hopefully you find something to inform and motivate you in the following pages. From the entire team, we wish you a safe, happy holiday period and look forward to re-connecting in person either at our Annual General Meeting in December, or sometime soon in the New Year.

In This Issue

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Farooq Chaudhry OBE is best known as the Co-founder and Executive Producer of the internationally acclaimed Akram Khan Company.

He is recognised as a global cultural leader, having worked as creative producer with companies such as English National Ballet, PCDC (Yang Liping) and has impacted the global artistic community through his work as an educator, consultant, mentor and lecturer.

In 2019 Farooq was awarded an OBE for his services to Dance and Dance Production. He is committed to ‘levelling the playing field’ for artists, audiences and cultures.

Catherine Cassidy has over 20 years’ professional experience of using dance in a wide range of community settings, from health to education and reformation, and has spent 10 years as Director of Engagement at Scottish Ballet. She has led the company to become specialists in dance health.

Catherine worked both nationally and internationally as a choreographer, dance artist and producer, and is also Specialist Advisor for the Arts Council of England, Creative Scotland and Imaginate Children’s Festival.

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Denise Saunders Thompson is President and Chief Executive Officer for The International Association of Blacks in Dance (IABD) and D.d.Saunders & Associates, Inc., a comprehensive fine arts advisory firm. She has extensive experience in non-profit and for-profit, established and start-up organisations.

In August of 2021, Denise returned to Howard University's Chadwick A. Boseman College of Fine Arts where she serves as the Assistant Dean for Administration. She also currently serves on the Board of Trustees for Performing Arts Alliance, Friends of Theatre and Dance at Howard University.

The One Dance UK Magazine | Autumn 2022 3
Farooq Chaudhry OBE Denise Saunders Thompson Andrew Hurst MBE Chief Executive, One Dance UK
We would like to thank the expert contributors who have been involved in this issue of One
Catherine Cassidy Page 33 Photos: A. Ayuso, Blue Skye Productions, Eve McConnachie & Omar Ingram
Scan the QR code to find out more Join us in getting more people across the UK dancing with ISTD qualified teachers.

Introduction 3 Welcome by Andrew Hurst MBE

In the Spotlight

News 7 WIN £100 of Theatre Vouchers as part of One Dance UK’s 12 Days of Christmas celebrations! 10 One Dance UK Awards 14 One Dance UK Membership: Member Q&A with Ithalia Forel

Special Focus on Innovation

17 Introduction by David Watson, 18 Reflections on Leadership by Farooq Chaudhry OBE 20 Something Old, Something New by Mirjam Otten 22 Diversity: The Key to the Survival of British Ballet by Dr Sandie Bourne 24 From the Streets to the People by Tamar Dixon 26 Inclusion and Rigour Are Not Binary by Stopgap Dance Company’s Lucy Bennett, Laura Jones and Chris Pavia 28 Commitment to Dance: Cameron Ball in conversation with Dance Consortium’s Joe Bates 30 Growing up in dance (GuiDANCE) by Erin Sanchez with Karen Sheriff, Dr Kathrina Farrugia-Kriel, Tabitha Moorse and Angela Kirkham. 33 Safe to Be Me by Scottish Ballet’s Catherine Cassidy 34 Access to the Arts for All by Laura Nicholson and CPAG’s Georgina Burt 36 Breakin’ Stereotypes by The Blair Academy’s Charlie Blair 37 Tom’s Journey by Jessica Lowe with Tom Boho, Niki Boho and Frances Collier



39 Innovators, Inventors and Producers: Introduction by Dr S. Ama Wray 40 Arts Innovation and Resilience by IABD’s Denise Saunders Thompson 42 The Voices of Hip Hop by Ian Abbott with Yami “Rowdy” Löfvenberg 44 The Art of Being Self Kind by Nicolette Wilson-Clarke FACCPH

Features 46 Dance: A Safe Space for All: Jessica Lowe in conversation with Prof. Almuth McDowall

Young Innovators

Make Your Case by IVAR’s Emily Dyson-Hawkes

The National Institute of Dance Medicine and Science: 10 Years On

Resources for the Dance Sector


– La Nijinska: Choreographer of the Modern by Lynn Garafola, review by Avatâra Ayuso

– Movement Direction by Kate Flatt, review by Katie Smith

Editorial and Advertising

Lara Coffey

Head of Marketing and Communications

Cameron Ball Magazine Editor

Katie Stevens Assistant Editor

Advertising enquiries

Contact Amelia Bickley


and Supporters With thanks to our funders

We thank our generous project partners, funder and supporters.

For further information, go to: thank-you


Cover Image and below Rory Clarke and Adhya Shastry from National Youth Dance Company (NYDC) England perform Alesandra Seutin’s Quartier Paradis at the U.Dance National Festival 2022, Birmingham. Photo Dani Bower for One Dance UK.

The One Dance UK Magazine | Autumn 2022 5 Contents
54 Book

Dance Transports

Dance Transports is Yorkshire Dance’s long-running programme which brings high quality continuing professional development (CPD) opportunities to Yorkshire. Each year they present day-long Dance Transports sessions which are open to artists from across Yorkshire, and this October One Dance UK collaborated to present the inaugural Dance Transports –Dance of the African Diaspora, for those who identify with, or wanted to explore, dance styles of the African Diaspora.

Following a callout, 10 artists joined cultural producer, strategist, and dance artist Sara Dos Santos for a fullday workshop at Yorkshire Dance. Sara curated and facilitated a session exploring the theme of identity and belonging within notions of Dance of the African Diaspora, utilising movement, conversation and themed provocations to inform the session.

Artists received a financial contribution to attend and participant feedback showed that those present found new inspiration and resources which they will take back to their communities and practices.

One participant commented “I felt seen, understood and valued, and that is something no amount of money or training can buy!”

Session leader Sara Dos Santos said “Dance Transports offered an opportunity to connect with a group of people who are on a journey of discovery. It was an absolute pleasure to not only share my practice which interlaces policy, creative exploration and movement, but also get a chance to lead a session that empowered generations of practitioners to continue pushing boundaries through their creative practices.”

Interim CEO and Artistic Director of Yorkshire Dance, Hannah Robertshaw, said “This Dance Transports was a truly beautiful experience, creating a

Celebrating dance champions

Black History Month was a time for reflection and celebration, and One Dance UK again provided prizes to dance professionals to support the incredible things they are doing in their community.

Following the success of the 2021 competition, this October dozens of entrants shared details of their important work and after much deliberation, three £250 prizes were awarded to the following dance champions:

• Dorivalda Filipe – Afrodance artist and teacher, Liverpool

• Dr Sandie Bourne – Founder, Black British Ballet Project

• Batch Gueye – Griot dancer, choreographer and dancer, Bristol

Alongside the £250 prize, which goes towards practice, project, or engagement with the community through dance of the African Diaspora (DAD), the artists are also equipped with:

• A year’s free One Dance UK membership

• Support, check ins and guidance from One Dance UK’s DAD team

• Promotion across One Dance UK platforms

• Further celebration opportunities throughout 2023

deep sense of connection for everyone in the room. The ethos of exchange created through the sharing of stories, ideas and movement language was embedded throughout. It was an incredible honour to bring this group of artists together and I hope it leads to many future collaborations.”

Further information

Find out more about Dance Transports opportunities:

Upcoming dance science meeting

Join co-hosts The International Association of Dance Medicine and Science (IADMS) and Middlesex University on January 14, 2023 for a unique hybrid IADMS Regional Meeting. Entitled The Holistic Dancer: The Art of Connecting Dance Science and Practice, the meeting will be held at Middlesex University, London, and live streamed to virtual attendees worldwide. Over the course of the day participants will explore the practices and principles that underpin dance science research with faculty from a variety of dance genres.

Practical and theoretical sessions from researchers and teachers will cover a range of topics from Irish dance, inclusive dance practice, embedding evidence based practice in vocational training, hormones and performance, a somatic framework for teaching and much more!



6 The One Dance UK Magazine | Autumn 2022 News
Batch Gueye Dorivalda Filipe Dr Sandie Bourne Photos: Dani Bower, D. Filipe, Clovis Lowe & Art of Being
Dance Transports participants

WIN a £100 Theatre Voucher!


The One Dance UK Magazine | Autumn 2022 7 Reader Competition
For your chance to win:
Email with the subject line ‘CHRISTMAS TICKET COMPETITION’ OR Keep an eye out for our Instagram post and follow the instructions on there.
Dance UK Members receive two entries per person, doubling your chance to win!
Dance UK is again celebrating 12 Days of Christmas with a
of exciting offers and activities.
The competition closes Sunday 12 December at 10am. Terms and conditions apply. Go to terms-and-conditions for information. One
whole range
This incredible prize will be drawn on 12 December so don’t miss out! We're offering a £100 theatre voucher for you to use to see a dance show/s of your choice in 2023!
Photos: Dani Bower: Eden Youth Dance Company perform at U.Dance National Festival 2022, Birmingham

Freelance Dance: Helping freelance artists influence public opinion, policy and practice

Freelance Dance is a project aimed at helping freelance artists influence public opinion, policy and practice has been designed and led by Karen Wood through her British Academy Innovation Fellowship and funding from Research England, in collaboration with One Dance UK as a cultural partner, and many freelance dance artists.

So far, there have been over 100 engagements with freelance dancers, with a group of 15 artists forming a working group, meeting three times before the end of October. This working group and the results of the conversations from previous activity will feed into a Practical Recommendations report that will be presented, by them, to the All-

Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) for Dance, for which One Dance UK is the secreteriat. In February 2023 the working group will present at a symposium, sharing findings with stakeholders.

This research is also part of a PhD project, conducted by Helen Laws, at the Centre for Dance Research, Coventry University. Helen is focusing on the value placed on freelancers, specifically dance artists, within the cultural ecology and wider labour market and political environment. She is investigating the influence this has on their economic precarity and how they might better organise to be heard, imagine and influence improvements in pay and working conditions within the current socio-political context.

Further information

Contact Karen Wood:

One Dance UK is asking dancers aged over 18 years old with over 5 years of dance experience to take part in research that will help explore abuse prevention and safeguarding issues in dance. The research will explore dancers’ experiences of safe dance environments to understand how dancers define what a safe environment is, and how it is (or is not) created and maintained by dance teachers, organisations, and dancers themselves.

The research will include interviews conducted over Zoom. The responses from the interviews will be anonymised in any publication of the research findings. The project was reviewed by the Ethics Committee of the School of Sport, Exercise and Rehabilitation Sciences at the

University of Birmingham.

Dr Grace Tidmarsh, School of Sport, Exercise, and Rehabilitation Sciences at University of Birmingham said: “We are delighted to be working in partnership with One Dance UK on this groundbreaking research. Building an understanding of safeguarding and abuse prevention policies and procedures used by UK dance organisations represents an important step towards enhancing the experiences of everyone who takes part in dance.”

Erin Sanchez, Manager of Health, Wellbeing, and Performance at One Dance UK commented: “Dance can be a vocation, a passion, an expressive outlet, and a way of enhancing our health. Every person in dance has the right to experience those benefits free from the risk of harm or abuse.”

Further information

Express interest in being a part of the study:

Learn more about the research One Dance UK has done on safeguarding:

One Dance UK supports the health, wellbeing, and performance of the dance sector and works to improve the conditions in which dance is created, performed, and experienced. Part of this is ensuring dance environments are free of any form of abuse.

We want to support everyone in our community as we address safeguarding concerns, and we recognise that mental health concerns, mental health traumas, and cultural dynamics may underlie complex issues in dance around defining, understanding, and addressing safeguarding. We recognise that abuse can be a painful and difficult topic.

If you’re feeling distressed, isolated, low, or otherwise concerned about your wellbeing or mental health you can text ‘SHOUT’ to 85258, the UK’s first free, confidential, 24/7 text support service, visit or reach out to your GP.

8 The One Dance UK Magazine | Autumn 2022 News
Photo: Dani Bower
Calling all dancers: What is a ‘safe dance environment’?
The One Dance UK Magazine | Autumn 2022 9 WE SEE YOU TURNING YOUR PASSION INTO YOUR PROFESSION BA (Hons) Dance Offering specialist, full-time performing arts training to students across school, college and degree courses
One Dance UK Awards 2022 10 The One Dance UK Magazine | Autumn 2022 • 11 Awards • 1000 Nominations • 1500 People's Choice Award votes

Celebrating the South West

This year One Dance UK formed a partnership with IMPERMANENCE, resident company at The Mount Without, a Grade II listed church in Bristol’s city centre. IMPERMANENCE creates transformative, entertaining, world-class productions aiming to build and support a thriving dance scene in Bristol.

During the Awards programme we shone a light on the great art, culture and food that Bristol and the South West has to offer, including local performers Bristol Ballroom, caterer Kate’s Kitchen and Dr Mena Fombo, a director, entrepreneur and inspirational global speaker, who compered the evening. We were delighted to welcome a presentation from the Bristol Ballroom Community celebrating dance, fashion, performance and gender expression.

Panel Discussions and Insights

We were joined by Cleo Lake, Laura Kriefman, Pavillion Dance South West's Victor Fung and IMPERMANENCE to explore the theme of “Artist Led Spaces: transcending physical and non-physical spaces.” The panel discussed how art, culture and dance occurring in different settings can provide space for alternative narratives, provocations and meaning.

Thank you

Thank you to everyone that came along to the evening’s events. We are proud of our community, the support we provide to one another, and all those that received a nomination or an Award.

We are grateful for hundreds of nominations received, the 37 panel members who supported the judging of 11 Awards, and all our event sponsors, supporters and suppliers.

The One Dance UK Magazine | Autumn 2022 11 One Dance UK Awards 2022
The One Dance UK Awards 2022 celebrated the achievements of the vibrant UK-wide dance ecology over the past year. The Awards offered an impressive snapshot of the incredible work taking place across a number of categories including Young People's Champion, the Green Dance Award and Digital Innovation.
Photos: Dani Bower IMPERMANENCE Dance One Dance UK Awards Host Dr Mena Fombo Bristol Ballroom Community dancers The One Dance UK Awards 2022 were sponsored by Harlequin Floors and the Black British Theatre Awards. We also thank Gordon & Co. for their generous support towards the Awards programme.

One Dance UK Awards Shortlist and Recipients

Congratulations to all shortlisted nominees and Award recipients!

People’s Choice Award

Sander Blommaert

Hannah Martin Sonia Brown

Young People’s Dance Champion Award

Amy Burdon

Helen Wilson RISE Youth Dance

Amber Leigh

Science & Research in Dance Award

Joseph Shaw Imogen Aujla Diego Marín

The Green Dance Award

Eliot Smith Dance

Johnny Autin, Autin Dance Theatre Motion Control Dance

Artistic Innovation in Dance Award


Health & Wellbeing in Dance Award

The Bob Lockyer Award for Digital Innovation

Alexander Whitley Dance Company Omari 'Motion' Carter Joumana Mourad –IJAD Dance Company

One Dance UK Awards 2022
Ltd Claire Cunningham Hal Mayer Gail Claxton-Parmel MBE The Jane Attenborough Award Rubicon Dance Dance United Yorkshire Movema Community Champion Award Dr. Rosaria Gracia DanceWest Parkinson's Dance Science Dawn Prentice Rosie Whitney-Fish Rose Kigwana (South East Dance) The Dance Spotlight Award
Lucy McCrudden, Dance Mama Stacey Green Dance United Yorkshire 12 The One Dance UK Magazine | Autumn 2022
The Dance Changemaker Award Award recipients are shown in bold Photos from the celebration, clockwise from top left: PDSW Artistic Director and joint CEO Victor Fung leads a panel discussion L-R Andrew Hurst MBE, Awards 2022 Host Dr Mena Fombo and Alisha Kadri Simeon 'Van Hasselt' Qsyea and Kendra 'Kro' Horsburgh, Birdgang Ltd Lucy McCrudden, Founder, Dance Mama Photos: Dani Bower

Jane Attenborough Award 2022:

Gail Claxton-Parmel MBE

Many congratulations! What does it mean to you to be the recipient of the Jane Attenborough Award?

It’s a huge honour to receive this award and I feel privileged that I can accept it on behalf of everyone who has worked with ACE dance and music over the 25 years of its existence. That’s what it is - a fantastic endorsement of the talent and determination of hundreds of artists, creatives and supporters who have made ACE what it is today.

It gives me greater confidence in the work we do and the motivation to continue inspiring the next generation.

You founded ACE dance and music with your husband Ian Parmel in 1997. How did the creation of ACE dance and music come about and what was your vision when the company began?

After graduating from the Northern School of Contemporary Dance in 1996 I worked for Kokuma Dance Theatre Company before Ian and I decided to form our own dance company. We were both passionate about allowing young dancers to discover and develop contemporary dance rooted in the traditions of the Caribbean and African diaspora, raising aspirations for them to know that anything is possible.

“Education and intercultural collaboration were at the heart of what we do from the very start, and we’ve never lost that vision – or our passion.”

What are some of the challenges you have faced in your career?

It’s probably easier to answer what challenges we haven’t faced! In truth though, contemporary dance is never an easy thing to do. At times we have struggled with making ends

meet, with obstacles placed in the way of us as people and of creating our art, of the shifting priorities of funding and of course most recently from the pandemic and the increasing and almost unbearable squeeze on those who we make our dance for, the people in our communities. Let’s hope things one day soon will get brighter.

Can you tell us more about the practical research you are doing and how this is pushing the boundaries of what people can expect from contemporary dance?

People are always surprised how powerful and yet controlled our work is. As a dancer, choreographer, founder, and Artistic Director, it’s always been at the core of my work to collaborate with artists and choreographers from across the globe creating opportunities to experience, learn about and discover diverse, culturally distinctive work that pushes boundaries.

Our inimitable Afro-fusion style pushes dancers physically, technically and culturally to explore as deeply as possible some very complex human issues through dance.

What’s next for you and the Company?

Right now, we are embarking on our first tour in three years with an exciting double bill called Unknown Realms. In the longer term we are continuing to discover and nurture the next generation of artists, creating exciting collaborations with new choreographers who are challenging perspectives.

We are also developing our educational programmes to try and support so many of the schools and colleges in Birmingham and across the country whose access to dance as a curriculum subject has been decimated over the last decade. That’s so important.

Find out more about ACE dance and music here:

The One Dance UK Magazine | Autumn 2022 13 One Dance UK Awards 2022
Gail Claxton-Parmel MBE, Artistic Director and Co-founder of ACE dance and music, was awarded the prestigious Jane Attenborough Award as a recognition of her outstanding achievements in dance over the past 25 years. The Jane Attenborough Award honours an individual working in dance who, like Jane, has made an outstanding contribution to the artform throughout their career. She spoke with One Dance UK Project Manager, Rebecca Bertram about her work. Gail ClaxtonParmel at the One Dance UK Awards Photos: Dani Bower

Meet a Member

In our series of Q&As with members, Membership Manager Barny Darnell caught up Ithalia Forel, Co-founder-director of Movema, which connects people and communities through dance in Liverpool and Bristol. She is currently taking part in the Clore Leadership Programme, and talks about her inspirations, passions and future plans.

What are your first memories of dancing?

What sticks out is being part of the Caribbean Carnival at the Merseyside Caribbean Centre in Toxteth, which was set up by many migrated people from the Caribbean, including my father. I remember the colours, the food, smells, the floats, the steel pans, and loud and symbolic sound systems.

In what style of dance did you originally train?

Initially all typical Europeans forms, including ballet, jazz, contemporary. I earned a HND in Dance at City of Liverpool College and through my constant exploration of other dance training I enrolled at the José Limón Institute New York City where I was exposed to West African and Afro Caribbean dance, and that would form the basis of my work.

What advice would you give to someone hoping to start a career in dance?

Push yourself, be courageous, step outside of your comfort zone. Believe in your gift because no one else will until you do. Champion self-care, look after yourself, both your physical and mental wellbeing, and if you need help, ask for it.

What’s the most common misconception about dancers?

That we are all the same, and that the overall aim is to be aesthetically beautiful. Dance is for everyone and can happen anywhere. Dance is such diverse access points, and we all have different techniques and approaches that derive from non European structures and practice.

What concerns you most about the future of dance in the UK?

That it will disappear, as it already has done in many schools, colleges and universities. Dance is already an underprivileged artform with a lack of funding and lack of platforms in relation to other art forms.

Who is your all time favourite dancer? What moves me the most is when I witness others connect

and joyfully express themselves through dance. This is when I think of my little boy Luther and when he finds that place where he is connecting to his natural movement and enjoying each and every moment. Bliss!

Why did you join One Dance UK as a member? I have hope in the message that One Dance UK advocates for the dance sector and is a national voice. Being part of this organisation will ensure that different perspectives are considered and championed across the UK, in particular the North and South West.

What does dancing do for you? It heals me and connects me to my environment. It connects me to the community I serve with the passion to get people to self-express through their personal movement. It’s my journey to joy – it’s spiritual, it’s raw and it feels so good!

What do you have in the pipeline? We have just secured funding from Arts Council England for the second year of the Wildfire Rising programme, which supports dance artists from underrepresented diasporas. Our classes and community work continues at pace!

Finally... you can have one last dance….what would that be, and why? It would be carnival with everyone I know taking part! My family, old friends and new taking to the streets! One last protest that celebrates collective liberation with vibrancy, big moves and music.


For information about One Dance UK membership or if you’d like to be featured in our Meet a Member Q&A section in the future, please visit or email

14 The One Dance UK Magazine | Autumn 2022 Membership
UK connects and supports members
Photo: Foteini Christofilopoulou Ithalia Forel
16 The One Dance UK Magazine | Autumn 2022 BA(Hons) Dance and Professional Practice BA(Hons) Performing Arts MA Dance Performance and Choreography PhD Dance Practice University of Bedfordshire @ArtsEdLondon | @ArtsEdSchool Applications now open! Day School Entry in years 7, 8 & 9 Sixth Form Entry in year 12 Scan to book a visit Double Excellent: Independent Schools The arts at the heart of an outstanding education Consistently ranked as the most academically successful performing arts school in the UK

When thinking about innovation, it often conjures up the idea of something being disruptive. Whilst this can be true there is a spectrum of impact; from the incremental to the truly radical. The creative industries offer a masterclass in innovation. Recently, as a response to global events, we have seen the embrace of new technologies used to extend the reach of dance, and the radical rethinking of how we embed diversity, inclusion and equity in our approach.

The UK dance sector is the envy of the world and will continue to be held in such high regard because of the thousands of talented, passionate and innovative people working it attracts.

As we move into the winter, we’re facing many more challenges than anticipated. I know that this is another moment where the sector will look to innovation to protect our beloved organisations and individuals with particular emphasis on the most vulnerable.

Organisations like One Dance UK must respond to the needs of its members and the wider sector – adapting, rethinking and doing things differently, and continue to ensure that dance has a voice, at the highest level, to reinforce its importance, contribution and impact on society.

Innovation is something we’re seeing deployed daily throughout the dance sector. After a turbulent few years it is this that will see us thrive, paving the way for an even stronger future.

18 Reflections on Leadership

Farooq Chaudhry OBE opens up about his ongoing development as a leader in dance 20 Something Old, Something New The classical dance sector is always finding ways to innovate, finds Mirjam Otten 22 Diversity: The Key to the Survival of British Ballet Black British Ballet Project's Dr Sandie Bourne on how ballet can, and should, involve more dancers 24

From the Streets to the People

Tamar Dixon on the new production To The Streets! and the importance of its strong community links 26 Inclusion and Rigour Are Not Binary

Lucy Bennett, Laura Jones and Chris Pavia on their 20 years at Stopgap Dance Company 28 Commitment to Dance Dance Consortium’s Joe Bates on the realities of touring in the current climate and exciting upcoming projects 30 Growing up in dance (GuiDANCE)

A new collaborative project focused on healthy growth and maturation of dancers 33 Safe to Be Me

Helping young people express their identity through dance by Scottish Ballet’s Catherine Cassidy 34 Access to the Arts for All Child Poverty Action Group’s recommendations on ensuring access for low-income groups

39 Special HOTFOOT Section

Hear from some of the incredible voices featured in HOTFOOT magazine, including: Dr S. Ama Wray, Denise Saunders Thompson, Ian Abbott and Nicolette Wilson-Clarke.

Introduction Innovation

The One Dance UK Magazine | Autumn 2022 17 Special Focus on Innovation
Photo: D. Watson

Reflections on Leadership

The need for innovation in dance requires industry leaders to be considerate, self-aware and engaged, writes Farooq

In recent months the word “uncertainty” has been dominating the leadership narratives in my head. Uncertainty triggered by Brexit, a climate crisis, Covid-19, warfare, rising nationalism, a cost of living crisis, gender politics, and a need to take diversity very seriously. There is so much noise around that it can easily stifle ambitions to produce meaningful art that invites us to see ourselves and the world we live in with new eyes. At times I feel as lost as the fractured world appears to be around me, but then waves of optimism flood my mind, offering me glimpses of a brave new world that demands me to test my leadership credentials like never before.

More often than not, I’ve taken comfort from my most reliable qualities as a leader, which is my ability to embrace change and to embrace it enthusiastically. My default

position is to see change as a game changing opportunity rather than an obstacle. I am irresistibly drawn to it. At times even anticipating it. By doing so it reinforces my sense of purpose, offering me a sense of clarity that can be used as an instinctive GPS guiding myself, my projects, my people and the companies I work for to a better place.

The late Queen embodied two qualities that I hugely admired. One is an overwhelming sense of duty and the second the recognition that she was a servant of a cause greater than herself. Being a leader who is a servant releases immense collective power uncontaminated by ego and the need to own your successes like trophies.

Yet, as the ground shakes beneath our feet, I’m compelled to think that a “black and white” moral compass is not a solution for making it stable again. As a creative leader, permission to be ‘grey’ ensures that our art is not sanitised and we are not denied

the beauty and complexity of what it means to be human.

I cannot lead with the handbrake on if I want to be the best servant possible, because “we humans, more like rainbows and mirages than like raindrops or boulders, are unpredictable self-writing poems –vague, metaphorical, ambiguous, and sometimes exceedingly beautiful”.

(Douglas Hofstadter, I Am a Strange Loop, p.363)

Thankfully, I have enough self- awareness (another essential leadership quality) to know that, if I want to make a difference, I need to abandon former versions of myself to keep evolving. Picasso said that every act of creation starts with an act of destruction. In the creation of art, often the hardest part is killing off untruths in the expression without losing the authentic voice. I believe this applies to leadership as well. If this proves too difficult then, at the very least, I need be as empty as I can

18 The One Dance UK Magazine | Autumn 2022 Focus on Innovation
Chaudhry OBE, Producing Director, Akram Khan Company and Director, Skye Blue Productions/Feng Ling Productions. Yang Liping Company Farooq Chaudhry OBE Photos: Blue Skye Productions & Yang Liping Company

when I work with others because as a leader, I am a catalyst, not a bank.

It’s no longer enough that collaboration is a furnace of existing knowledge bound by common values seeking to create something new. Collaborative intentions now seem to work best when ‘starting full’ is exchanged for ‘starting empty’, as we venture forth with cold eyes and warm hearts to explore the nether regions of our imagination and to challenge status quos that hinder our progress.

This is extremely challenging in a world where our sense of insecurity is heightened and the safety of the “familiar” becomes a metaphorical comfort blanket. At times, it feels nigh on impossible but so far I’ve always thrived off the impossible.

It reminds me of a thank you speech by a young choreographer I once mentored. She said, “I want to equally thank all those people who supported me and all of those who didn’t!”

It’s hard to have growth without resistance. Just ask any bodybuilder!

Yet, despite this, it’s not enough to have solutions reinforced by mental resilience and fortitude.

Our networks need a different form of engagement beyond the usual doorways of opportunity. They need deeper connections and sensitivities that ensure we are no longer an ecosystem of transactional superheroes but a community of communities. If we don't engage, we may once again face the terrible sensation of feeling alone and not belonging. Remember the lockdowns!

I’m aware some of what I have written sounds contradictory. It’s hard not to be as I navigate myself through the uncomfortable act of transition. However, just to be clear, I have no intention of throwing the proverbial leadership baby out with the bathwater.

The essentials of innovative leadership remain the same – embrace curiosity; learn to tango with risk and ambiguity; be both participant and observer; have a relentless drive for self-improvement; work unbelievably

hard; have the exceptional judgment not to kill the innocence of the best ideas; lead with questions more than answers; experiment playfully; surround yourself with people smarter than yourself; make the overcomplicated simple; see mistakes as insights not failures; encourage ideas from the unexpected; know that perfection does not exist but striving for it does; give more value to process rather than outcome for the simple fact that that’s where the most fun is, and the list goes on.

I’ll leave the last words to the brilliance of educator and creativity expert Sir Ken Robinson who said “the role of a creative leader is not to have all the ideas. It’s to create a culture in which everybody will have ideas.”

There is a great deal of work to be done. I don’t know where we are going but I’m certainly looking forward to getting there!

Further information

The One Dance UK Magazine | Autumn 2022 19
Focus on Innovation
“The leaders of today need the strength of being vulnerable and the courage to ask for help and ideas from unfamiliar sources.”
Akram Khan Company perform Outwitting the Devil Photo: Jean Louis Fernandez

Something Old, Something New

classical dance heritage


“Where do you see unrealised potential for connecting with the world around us?” This is one of 12 questions I asked leading directors and choreographers from the international dance scene for my research project ‘Classical Tradition/Modern Society’. The aim was to understand how we can maintain and extend the social traction of the classical ballet tradition. Their responses revealed a rich collection of ideas to help companies, creators and decision-makers in the industry strike a balance between innovation and heritage conservation, covering areas from ballet’s nature and social context as a form of art, industry characteristics and cross-sector relations, to best practice in artistic work, programming, and producing. I compiled these findings in an open report of practical considerations in keeping with modern times and facilitating a more profound connection with audiences in the ballet sector.

Inherent innovation

The project revealed a simple truth: classical dance is inherently innovative. Not only is it originally a modernisation of previous traditions of folk dance and court mannerism (Brinson, 1989; DeValois, 1957), but its core characteristic also makes it continuously self-renewing. Classical ballet strives for excellence, and excellence requires constant growth. The classical vocabulary fosters this through the unique challenges its technique and repertory pose for a dancer’s body, continually advancing athleticism in dance.

In addition to internal drivers of innovation, the conversations uncovered a rich landscape of innovation coming from external structural and technological advances.

Innovation in the way we work

The ongoing growth in the classical practice makes regular review and adaptation highly important. Birmingham Royal Ballet’s Assistant Director Dominic Antonucci explained the significance of ensuring that technical standards used in training and rehearsals are current by saying: “Physical demands on the

dancers are greater than they were, so how do we intelligently achieve those demands while still keeping the dancers safe and healthy?”.

As physical abilities and understanding – fueled by medical disciplines — evolve, our way of working should, too. Richard Bermange, Creative Director of English National Ballet’s Youth Company ENBYouthCo, echoes that companies should put advancements in understanding of the human body, dancer safety, and encouraging health-oriented decision-making at the forefront of their practice. A proactive approach to this can look like the University College London Dance Network, which unites companies with academic specialists to advance physical insights and solutions for dance, for example by exploring how specialist dance flooring can monitor dancers’ health over the course of a season.

Additionally, private sector companies are providing a growing range of tools to complement ballet dancers’ practice more effectively than ever. The German Act’ble GmbH developed new pointe shoes, called act’pointes, made with 3D printing

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Mirjam Otten Photos: Felix Dirks & courtesy act'ble
act'ble pointe shoes

and compression knit to provide a much longer-lasting shoe and aid injury prevention. Materialise, a Belgian company is equally using 3D technology for anatomical modelling to create surgical aids for flexible manufacturing in dance health care. These innovations are emerging in all areas of dance production, creating a dynamic conglomerate of renewal. As Antonucci said, “For every department, whether it’s wardrobe or lighting or the stage crew, there are new tools, there’s new knowledge, so there is an evolution.”

Innovation in the work we create Technological innovations influence the artistic realities of our work as much as its physical realities. Modern technologies have opened a vast space of opportunity to realise creative formats that surpass traditional stage works. In 2021, Fubunation’s immersive Mutation Space used motion sensor technology to enable live interaction between dancers and projections. Boston Ballet’s ÜNI Public Art project similarly combines dance with sculpture, film and installation to create a unique site-specific experience. The format overcomes mobility restrictions

of stage productions as it allows visitors to move around freely and can be installed anywhere within a day.

While such projects widen access and engagement by breaking out of conventional formats, they can also inspire a holistic approach to traditional performances. Madeleine Onne, former Artistic Director of Finnish National Ballet, suggested that “the experience has to start when you buy the tickets.” A practical example is her Pippi Longstocking production for The Royal Swedish Ballet, for which her team had a slide built from the balcony to the foyer of the opera house to signal to kids that the ballet world is a place where they can have fun and will want to come back to.

All these initiatives demonstrate that taking an holistic and integrated approach to performance formats can modernise ballet work in a way that expands its reach, impact and enjoyment.

Progress and development

There are many more potentialbearing avenues to modernisation in dance, but all come with a risk: They might not catch on. Integrated formats might only attract new

audiences for a one-off event, and 3D-printed pointe shoes might fail to replace the satin slipper after all. However, the unpopularity of a development does not lessen its significance. For example, whilst an audience might not appreciate a work of choreography, it might still be relevant to them, wider society and the advancement of the art form (Schnell, 2014).

The same applies to structural innovation. In fact, modernisation can be seen as a form of heritage preservation as it pursues the social longevity of the practice (Johnson and Snyder, 1999). Whilst some innovations might fail, their collective progress helps the classical ballet industry stay modern and relevant, and is always worth pursuing.

Further information

Read Mirjam's research report which includes the references used in this article: Classical Tradition/Modern Society:

University College London Dance Network:

The One Dance UK Magazine | Autumn 2022 21 Focus on Innovation
“The quest for excellence fosters a mindset of innovation: as artists work to find new artistic challenges and modern takes on traditional choreography, they continuously renew the tradition itself.”
Photos: Dani Bower ENBYouthCo perform And Still choreographed by Emma Farnell-Watson and Joshua Smith at U.Dance National Festival 2022, MAC, Birmingham

Diversity: The Key to the Survival of British Ballet

What does diversity mean in the ballet sector?

Diversity in ballet should mean the same as any other sector: to acknowledge and include people from all racial and socio-economic backgrounds, sexual orientations and disabilities. Issues around diversity and inclusion have become more urgent since 2020, when the rise of the Black Lives Matter movement led to increased conversations on systemic racism and how it operates.

Historically, from a Black British perspective, British ballet companies have not been inclusive. Black dancers were not employed due to racist assumptions about the Black body and its aesthetic representation on the stage.

Outreach programmes

Much research has been done on the absence of Black dancers in British ballet. In 1976 the Arts Council of Great Britain commissioned a report by Naseem Khan. It highlighted how Black British dancers were forced to go abroad to seek employment with companies like Dance Theatre of Harlem. The Graham Devlin report of 1989 examined access to ballet for the Black community. Recommendations from these reports were implemented by the major ballet companies to some degree. These include the Royal Ballet’s Chance to Dance programme which started in 1991, and Birmingham Royal Ballet’s Dance Track which began in 1997.

Later, other ballet institutions established their own outreach programmes. While these programmes have identified some brilliant talent, many Black and other global majority dancers who were trained on these programmes only found success in other areas of dance. This lack of professional opportunities is one of the key reasons why, even today, few Black British artists are employed with major British ballet companies, with many of the Black dancers in companies coming from overseas.

Role models

To encourage artists from the Black British community to pursue a career in ballet, they need to be inspired by seeing professionals who look like them, and who are employed at all levels, from the corps de ballet to principals, to choreographers and composers.

Role models who can break racial boundaries to inspire the next generation of artists are essential to demonstrating that a successful career in British ballet is achievable.

From here to diversity

However, this road to a career must begin early in young people’s lives. Diverse dance academies and funded opportunities to train are essential to this. Diversity is needed in both supporting and leadership roles, and positive depictions in ballet repertoire and character roles remain an important part of the solution.

New collaborations with Black composers and choreographers like Kyle Abraham, Alleyne Dance and Joseph Toonga are welcome but remain all too rare. When ballet companies are more diverse and relevant, new audiences will come, which in the long term, is central to the survival of British ballet.

Further Information

Watch a panel discussion for the Black British Ballet Project facilitated by Dr Sandie Bourne, featuring Brenda Garratt-Glassman, Ben Love and Shevelle Dynott – three generations of Black British dancers, choreographers and dance educators:

22 The One Dance UK Magazine | Autumn 2022 Focus on Innovation
Dr Sandie Bourne References Khan, Naseem (1976) The Arts Britain Ignores: The Arts of Ethnic Minorities in Britain, London: Community Relations Commission. Devlin, Graham (1989) Stepping Forward, London: Arts Council Dance Department. Photo: Clovis Lowe & Ballet Soul Brandon Lee Sears in Ballet Soul's Othello21, directed and choreographed by Ben Love

You can support the BBTA’s initiative and be a part of this pioneering movement with the most diverse, grassroots celebration of theatre excellence the UK has to offer.

We have launched our Youth Development Programme for the new academic year. Throughout the year we will support many young people in gaining new experiences working with our magnitude of supporters across the theatre industry. This Includes our mentoring scheme, theatre trips, masterclasses and lectures on black theatre history. Donate via our FundRazr page

Get in touch:

The One Dance UK Magazine | Autumn 2022 23 STUDY DANCE AT
MIDDLESEX UNIVERSITY Undergraduate & Postgraduate Courses @MdxUniDance

From the Streets to the People

One Dance UK’s Tamar Dixon recently volunteered her time at performances of To The Streets!, China Plate and Birmingham Hippodrome’s new musical inspired by the 1963 Bristol Bus Boycott. This uplifting new production represented an important moment in Black and Asian British history and was presented in local communities across the West Midlands.

She spoke with the creative team to discover their approach to using theatre and authentic dance styles to share a social message.

The Bristol Bus Boycott 1963 was the first Black- and Asian-led worker's campaign in post-war Britain against racial discrimination, arising from the Omnibus Company refusing to employ Black or Asian drivers or conductors in Bristol. As a woman of Caribbean descent born and raised in Britain, the stories of my relatives during the Windrush era are all closely connected with shared experiences, including those of these brave protestors. Fast forward 59 years, and it struck a chord to see a new production To The Streets! was to be presented in my local area, reflecting this story through dance and musical theatre.

Following a callout to the community I volunteered to assist, supporting the front-of-house team with audience engagement. The concert version of the show was presented outdoors in August 2022 on popup stages across the West Midlands, as part of the Birmingham 2022 Festival. The show’s creative team wanted to celebrate the talent of diverse Midlands communities and examine the legacy of the Commonwealth. While the specific events at the core of the production took place in Bristol, the themes of allyship are universal. Chris Sudworth, Executive Producer, noted “This is a national story of global communities that made their homes and built their lives here; taking to the streets to lay the foundations for a better future for generations to come.”

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Tamar Dixon Photos: Dani Bower & Iona Firouzabadi To The Streets!

Journey to the stage

Premiering in August, the production team actually began their journey in 2018, building relationships with the affected communities and workshopping creative ways of sharing their stories through the medium of musical theatre. Executive Producer Paul Warwick explained “When dealing with this historical event, it was important to engage sensitively with the veterans of the boycott and their relatives - taking time to meet them in an appropriate context and keeping them informed of the production’s development.”

Choreographer Dannielle ‘Rhimes’ LeCointe also found personal connection to a story of protest in the face of discrimination, reminiscing with her grandparents on their experiences as part of her research. “I want to create empowering; inspirational work full of action,” she explained, “and I think it's important that stories like this are honoured and respected. As much as I believe people need to educate themselves, putting work like this on stage in an entertaining way plays an important role in educating people.”

Sharing stories authentically

When a piece of theatre is so particularly rooted in the experiences of cultural groups, how can we do justice to these stories? We are all familiar with insensitive depictions of Black and Brown culture in dance and theatre productions, and it has been refreshing to recently see many productions across our sector, including this one, approach new creations with authenticity in mind. Dance is an integral part of society across the West Indies and Rhimes’s research and development meant certain popular styles played a major role in To The Streets!. “It felt like home to use movements and sounds that are familiar to me in the intimacy of my extended family” Rhimes notes.

The combination of dance styles performed, such as jazz dance and common Caribbean folklore styles, aligned with Jamaican music like calypso and ska. Tim Sutton, who created the music and lyrics, noted “The musical styles that feature in To the Streets! were chosen to communicate information about location, character and plot. In this era it feels more important than ever to tell stories of social protest and change in ways that are engaging and uplifting.”

Director Christopher Haydon was an advocate of taking the story to the people from the start. “This is a story about a community standing up for itself - so it was essential that we made it as accessible as possible to people from similar communities. We shared the music with people from Bristol who were directly involved in the boycott as part of the development process for the show.”

Audience connections

I met a breadth of individuals and families who came to watch the production, from all walks of life and socioeconomic backgrounds. Some had a very personal connection, with Joyce Morris-Wisdom, who marched

in Bristol as a teenager, attending performances in Handsworth Park, Birmingham.

As I observed the pre-show performances and festival atmosphere, it was clear that community involvement was a thread that ran through all elements of To The Streets!. Warwick said the aims were to share the stage with local communities in each location. “This commitment continued through creative projects, co-designed with North Birmingham communities and led by a team of brilliant Associate Producers. We wanted to ensure that the production didn’t just land in a place without developing a connection with it.”

The response from the audience, made up of people from all backgrounds, was thrilling. Sutton spoke for the creative team: “It was wonderful to be amongst a diverse audience in the Midlands and feel the immediate connection made between the songs and the audience.” There is ambition to tour the show nationally from 2024, so the work for the team continues.

The real-life story behind the Bristol Bus Boycott 1963 reflected a social message that is still relevant, as we see with ongoing campaigns for racial equality and trade union strikes taking place across public and private sectors. It was so rewarding to be in a very small way a part of bringing this story to audiences’ attention through dance and theatre, whether or not they have experienced racial discrimination.

Further information

The One Dance UK Magazine | Autumn 2022 25 Focus
“For many Black and Brown people, uncovering certain stories can be a rerelease of a traumatic encounter. When you are a leader but may not directly relate to people’s stories; you have got to respect those in the room. There is opportunity to create on a deeper level, making space for openness in safety.”
Dannielle ‘Rhimes’ LeCointe Choreographer, To The Streets!
Photos: Iona Firouzabadi

Inclusion and Rigour are Not Binary 20 years of innovation in inclusive practice at Stopgap Dance Company

January 2023 marks 20 years since Lucy Bennett, Laura Jones and Chris Pavia began their careers with Stopgap Dance Company. Lucy and Laura are now Co-Artistic Directors, and Chris is a resident choreographer. In this article, Lucy, Laura and Chris reflect on their journey of innovating inclusive dance, and what next for Stopgap.

Lucy: Stopgap was a repertoire company when we first joined as dancers. Back then, choreographers would come in to make work and sometimes set tasks coming from non-disabled perspectives. We would collectively figure out things like, how can we achieve unison amongst the different rhythms and physicality of our diverse bodies when the choreographer wanted us to move like them to specific counts? We would spend many hours observing each other’s dance habits or functional movements and find hooks that helped us stay connected as a group. We immediately felt that the outcome was richer with the diverse dancers engaging in a dialogue, and this is how our inclusive creative process developed. We’re now a devising company, and our creativity is led by this inclusive mindset instead of tagging it on at the end once the choreographer has made up the material.

Laura: Our creative process goes through the cycle of ‘reinvent, reflect and refine’, and it gradually led us away from ‘adaptation’ to ‘translation’’. Inclusive choreography is a two way conversation. It doesn’t have to be disabled people adapting non-disabled people’s material. Material making can be initiated by disabled dancers, and different people engaging in a creative dialogue gives richness to our work.

Chris: Stopgap gave me opportunities to practice choreography from when I started with the company, and it was exciting to choreograph The Awakening for the national touring of outdoor festivals in 2014. That got me the chance to make the video installation piece at Watts Gallery last year.

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Lucy Bennett Laura Jones Chris Pavla Photos: Stopgap Dance Company & Hugo Glendinning Within by Thomas Noone
How did you develop inclusive choreography and why is it important to have inclusivity at the core of what you do?

How did you develop your inclusive training?

Laura: Back when we started, dance classes for disabled people were largely based on improvisation. Technique class was seen to be exclusionary, but Stopgap explored how it could be taught inclusively because improvisation, as valuable as it is, was only giving disabled dancers exposure to one aspect of dance.

Lucy: We broke down the essence of what a technique was trying to achieve and found a way to translate this onto different bodies and learning styles. This process of investigation has now become a collective responsibility and actually takes a leaf out of improvisation. We all have to focus on the intention of an exercise and open a conversation about it.

Our inclusive practice is also based on translation and not adaptation, so our dance classes are never hierarchical. It can be a physically disabled person teaching and opening a dialogue with the standing dancers about a movement they made on their body, or it can go the other way.

Laura: We were innovating conventional technique classes through the cycle of ‘reinvent, reflect, refine’. It underpins our practice in training and creativity and once we started saying that “our dance practice enables diverse dancers to get to know their own bodies”, the penny dropped. Classes need to be designed so that disabled and non-disabled dancers can continue to sharpen their bodies as tools for expression. This is important if you want to be a consistent and professional performer.

Chris: I like improvisation, but I also like it when people like Laura take the time to show me different ways of doing an exercise.

Lucy: Even now, we hear about disabled dancers in training not being given access to the same technique classes that their non-disabled peers get. People still assume that disabled dancers can only do improvisation, but we want institutions, companies and teachers to change their attitude and co-design provision through an ongoing conversation with disabled dancers.

Laura: Equity and equality are what drives everything we do, and we’ve always had the attitude that people should be allowed access to all aspects of dance, disabled or not.

What’s next for your work with Stopgap Dance Company?

Laura: 2023 will start with the continuation of a partnership project with Oriente Occidente, which is supported by the British Council’s International Collaboration Grant. We’re aiming to embed inclusive dance in Italy in collaboration with two disabled Italian dance leaders Aristide Rontini and Giuseppe Comunielo. We then run the fourth edition of our online teacher training course Seedbed, so 2023 will be a busy start for me.

Chris: I premiered a new outdoor duet called Echoes From The Earth for the National Trust this summer. It’s made for the woodlands and forests, and I hope it will tour around the countryside next year.

Lucy: Stopgap will be making a new indoor show called Lived Fiction, and I feel this is the production that 20 years of our experience is leading us to. Lived Fiction will be an exciting piece of dance work that has creative access firmly integrated.

During lockdown, we made Dance Tapes, which were a series of digital solo dance works that are sound and spoken-word only. It combines audio description and self-felt experience of disabled dancers with supportive sound composition by Moulettes. It was made with visually impaired audiences in mind, and we developed creative transcripts for D/deaf audiences. We’re putting what we learned in Dance Tapes into Lived Fiction, a live work. It will celebrate everything that inclusive choreography has to offer. We’re petrified by our own ambition, but Lived Fiction will hopefully entice the sector to go further with inclusion and integrated access.

Further information

The One Dance UK Magazine | Autumn 2022 27 Focus on Innovation
Photo: Chris Parkes
“We learn something new about movement from each other, and we find a way to capture these discoveries by codeveloping technique classes through dialogue. This is what makes us rigorous and inclusive.”
Lucy Bennett Co-Artistic Director, Stopgap Dance Company
Stopgap Dance Company in rehearsal

Commitment to Dance

In an uncertain economic climate, how can large-scale tour producers maintain their high standards and continue to develop their offer? One Editor Cameron Ball gets insight from Joe Bates, Executive Director of Dance Consortium.

Tell us about the recent production of the Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo – were there any challenges, and what advice do you have for fellow producers and programmers?

This is the 6th tour that Dance Consortium has produced with the Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo (aka The Trocks) and they continue to be a strong crowd-pleaser with their fantastically entertaining and comedic takes on the classic ballets.

Touring is really tricky at the moment and the touring sector has faced huge challenges over the past few years. However, I genuinely feel that dance is having a moment. As an art form, it requires technical skills, is universal and audiences are not confined by language barriers, making it incredibly accessible and inspiring.

We have had a number of challenges with this tour, particularly with the fluctuating exchange rate of sterling against the dollar and the rising costs of everything associated with touring; from freight and fuel charges to hotel costs and freelancers’ fees. There is very little we can do beyond being open to collaboration, constantly replanning, sharing costs between partners as much as possible and discussing the challenges with colleagues across the sector. Exchange and partnerships are key. It all takes energy, strong negotiating skills and an ability to hold one’s nerve, particularly when the geopolitical environment is in such a state of flux.

How do you decide on what work to present, and with pressures on venues and producers, why is choice of programming so critical now?

Dance Consortium members have made a commitment to present a diverse programme that includes voices, aesthetics and styles from across the world including Africa, South America and Asia, as companies and choreographers from these parts of the world have historically not toured the UK and Ireland. It is important for us to support the venues to grow their audiences and do this in a cost-effective way.

Dance Consortium members review production packs

received from companies all around the world and we support representatives from our membership to look at work and submit reports and recommendations. For environmental purposes, we tend to now only see work when it is in Europe (often at larger festivals so we can see other companies whilst we are there) and this enables members to use train travel rather than air travel.

The diversity of the programme is very important and we support members to reach new people who might be inspired by dance, both through the programming and our strategic projects and engagement work.

What has Dance Consortium got coming up for UK audiences next year?

2023 looks to be an exciting year! Firstly, in the spring we have the return of South African choreographer Dada Masilo. Her latest work, The Sacrifice, is inspired by Pina Bausch’s The Rite of Spring and Igor Stravinsky’s monumental score. Dada Masilo is known for her reinvention of classic stories so they speak to Black identity and feminism, mining her cultural background to create her own distinctive choreographic style.

Tell us about Dance Consortium’s learning and participation work and other strategic initiatives which support the dance ecology.

Dance Consortium’s wide-reaching Learning and Participation programme accompanies each tour and includes workshops, masterclasses, open rehearsals, post show Q&As and ‘meet the artist’ events devised in consultation with the member theatres and designed to build on existing engagement priorities and partnerships.

The activity is a mix of live and online to build on the theatre’s relationships in the local community including partnerships with in-house groups, with schools, colleges and community groups. Twice-yearly networking meetings with venue learning teams also act as a valuable knowledge-sharing network. Many venues offer reducedprice tickets for Dance Consortium performances for workshop participants.

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Photo: Brian Slater Joe Bates

Dance Consortium’s talent development programme includes two main strands:

Firstly, Ailey Project UK, which is a collaboration with Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater and The Ailey School in the USA. Dance Consortium partners with member venues and local dance groups around the country to offer summer intensive programmes, masterclasses and online workshops. These are aimed at young dancers aged 14+ who want to go on to professional training and although open to everyone, Dance Consortium works with Black-led young dance companies/organisations to specifically target young Black dancers and provide unique opportunities to work with this world-renowned company.

Secondly, Dance Consortium runs a Future Leaders Programme, which supports young people’s journeys into a career in the arts and cultural sector.

How do you and the partner venues best manage competing pressures between presenting high quality dance, ensuring fair wages are paid, and keeping tickets affordable?

Dance Consortium is a member of UK Theatre and therefore adheres to best practice in terms of working conditions, contracts and wages. Venues are under a huge amount of pressure to balance budgets, particularly with rising energy costs and the cost of living crisis.

The subsidy that Dance Consortium receives helps venues to present high-quality international work in an affordable way and thus keep ticket prices accessible for their audiences. The average ticket price for Dance Consortium tours in 2012 was approximately £20. 10 years later in 2022 the average ticket price has risen to around £26, which enables the work to remain accessible.

Sales across the country are growing with each tour and although audiences may be more selective with their

show choices, there is still good demand for international work. I am really pleased to have had The Trocks as my first Dance Consortium tour as they offer audiences a thoroughly fun, entertaining show with incredible dancers. I think this is what audiences want and need at the moment.

Further information

The One Dance UK Magazine | Autumn 2022 29 Focus on Innovation
Photos: John Hogg & Sascha Vaughan
“To survive and thrive, touring organisations and companies need to remain constantly flexible and incredibly tenacious to deal with the ever-changing landscape.”
Dada Masilo's The Sacrifice, presented by Dance Consortium in spring 2023 The Trocks in Swan Lake, presented by Dance Consortium

Growing up in dance (GuiDANCE)

Research from Dr Siobhan Mitchell says that puberty has implications for the physical and psychosocial adjustment of dancers and there needs to be further exploration of education and practice across the sector. The GuiDANCE project (Growing up in Dance) is a collaboration led by Dr Mitchell, with the University of Exeter, One Dance UK, the Royal Ballet School and the Royal Academy of Dance, and aims to address the challenges associated with pubertal transition in dance for young people.

Erin Sanchez interviews some members of the GuiDANCE project advisory group, which includes dance students and dance teachers. They have collaborated to review dance sector practices, evaluated education available, and co-created a set of guidelines for best practice for managing growth and development in dance.

Why is growth and maturation important in the context of your work?

Karen: Essentially, because we work with young children and growing bodies. They’re growing and maturing alongside their training. I think that’s what makes adolescent sport and pre professional sport almost specialisms in their own right.

There’s an added risk around training, load, or energy balance, and all these things that go along with growth and maturation. Our duty is almost intertwined with a duty of care.

Kathrina: The RAD Faculty of Education is primarily driven by its dance teacher training, vision and mission, that’s why we exist and what we’re here for. So, one of the things that the Faculty has really benefited from in this knowledge exchange project is to stop and think about how we shape not just our understanding, but our future dance teachers’ understanding of what we should know about children and young people through the passage of growth and maturation.

The other thing that I wanted to highlight was that research doesn’t happen unless there’s a gap. It always happens because there is something that we need to address. It’s important that we start to work collaboratively and connect higher education with the private sector and beyond.

What we gain from building these relationships between primary investigator, organisations that are affiliated, and the dance teachers who are working on the ground with the young people is that there are synergies, that we learn to listen to each other.

Tabitha: In terms of research and from personal experience, we know that there can be adverse experiences and consequences

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if something happens GuiDANCE project contributing parters Representatives consulted for this article are: Photos (clockwise from top left): A. Kirkham, courtesy Royal Ballet School, T. Moorse, K. Farrugia-Thiel, S. Mitchell Angela Kirkham Ballet teacher, Artistic Director, Kirkham Henry Performing Arts Centre Karen Sheriff Head of Healthcare, Royal Ballet School Dr Siobhan Mitchell Research Fellow in Child Health, University of Exeter Dr Kathrina Farrugia-Kriel Head of Research, Royal Academy of Dance Tabitha Moorse Former dancer and Dance Ambassador GuiDANCE project lead researcher:

during that time of vulnerability which then coincides with puberty and maturation. I look back and think some of the attitudes I had imposed on me, and I imposed on myself, during my training as just ridiculous; you’re trying to suppress something that’s really normal. I went through almost a kind of second growth, maturation, puberty once I left dance.

It’s something that is really important to me personally and in the work I have been doing in eating disorder support. We know the link there in terms of how vulnerable dancers can be struggling with food as well. I think if we have healthier and more supportive attitudes towards something that’s a really normal process, we’d likely mitigate risks of adolescents developing those kind of mental health difficulties, and eating disorders in particular. Angela: Things have changed so much. When I first started teaching, it was a ‘criticism’. Well, now it’s a ‘correction’, and I think young people are trying to teach more positively.

I think these young people are not just a body. They’re a whole person. We have to teach our teachers what will happen to young people as their hormones change, and the physical and mental changes that come with it.

What changes in the dance sector would you like to see come about as a result of the GuiDANCE project?

Karen: I hope [the project] will change the understanding around [growth and maturation] and perhaps the fear around it. People probably lose quite a lot of real talent along the way, but for reasons like this, which we want to eliminate. I’d like to see heightened awareness of the impact on dancers and education around that for healthcare teams, and also artistic teams and coaches together.

Also, giving people ideas on how to do that with different resources. You can just give them the formulae; what would work to help track them, and then what we do about it. It’s all wrapped up in informing practice across the board that is cost effective, as well. That can be so important and quite transformative.

Kathrina: The kind of change I want to see is that we extend our research beyond the ‘normal’ topics that we have been researching, and that we can apply in and outside of that comfort zone. I wish the sector itself will recognise not just the importance of this research, not just in terms of the collective nature but also the potential that can emerge from this, perhaps moving into other sectors, or other dance forms that have been underrepresented. It will be exciting to see the future possibilities that come out of this.

Tabitha: One of the things that we’ve been talking about is being able to bring conversation and education about growth and maturation regularly and frequently out into the open, both in dance classes and in psycho educational sessions.

I think that that element of it being proactive as well, and not waiting till 15-16 to start talking about body image and changes, because we know that it happens before then.

Angela: Just seeing that the whole child. I know teachers that still think of them literally as a body. I have seen that a lot of the establishments are trained to reach the top, they’re trained to take a very narrow approach.

I think there has to be realism in this, as when physical changes happen, often young dancers don’t know where to turn. I think young people need to have more understanding of other things they can reach and achieve.

Further information

To discuss the findings from the GuiDANCE project, contact

The One Dance UK Magazine | Autumn 2022 31 Focus on Innovation
Photo: Brian Slater
Company perform at the U.Dance National Festival 2022
Hampshire Youth Dance
“Teachers can offer something that is underpinned with facts and evidence rather than myth and hearsay. I think that dancers’ attitudes towards themselves, their bodies, and their technique, would generally be more positive as a result. ”
Tabitha Moorse

Academy of Music & Theatre Arts


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32 The One Dance UK Magazine | Autumn 2022
Supportedby Photo: ©Steve Tanner

Safe to Be Me

Scottish Ballet’s Director of Engagement, Catherine Cassidy, introduces Safe to Be Me® – a pioneering dance programme that has been developed with primary schools and is now widening its scope to include secondary schools.

Safe to Be Me® is an influential part of the Scottish Ballet’s health initiative, SB Health. Since 2013, the Engagement Team at Scottish Ballet has been dancing with young people who have faced adversity in childhood and families who live with neurological conditions. The ethos behind the company’s pioneering dance health programmes is to place the individual and their unique lived experience at the heart of collaborative design, tackling pressing societal challenges in health and community wellbeing through dance.

At Scottish Ballet, we have grown a team of highly skilled artists who use dance to embody important themes – this factor was instrumental to the development of our Safe to Be Me® schools’ performance and workshop programme that celebrates diversity and explores topics of racism, gender identity, disability, family diversity and LGBTQ+ communities. Dance helps to foster a deeper connection to these subjects and supports pupils to use their own bodies to express ideas.

Each participating Safe to Be Me® class receives a half-day dance skill-up session followed by a full-day workshop and performance. This will likely be the first time many Primary 6 pupils (age 9/10) interact with

dance as an expressive art. We created the Safe to Be Me® trio performance especially for this age group – there are clear moments to get them thinking about relationships, power dynamics, gender, inclusive behaviour, and the labels we accept and reject. After exploring themes contained in the dance, pupils create their own Safe to Be Me® performance to share with peers and family.

A popular theme for pupils is family diversity. Talking about families is an opportunity to share what we celebrate, our family traditions, who is important … it also helps us to talk about heritage, gender, faith, how a family changes after divorce or bereavement – as dance artists, we need to be able to support all these discussions through an arts lens. Safe to Be Me® is constantly evolving to reflect our society. Right now, we are celebrating difference and encouraging compassionate enquiry.

One pupil fed back: “I learnt that every family is different, and just because your family may not be the same, it doesn’t matter. What matters is that you love and respect each other.”

Safe to Be Me® pupil feedback.

Further information Since launching in 2019, Safe to Be Me® has engaged with over 5,400 young people across Scotland. Scottish Ballet is grateful to abrdn who have generously supported the programme for three years. With thanks to The Gannochy Trust Scottish Ballet’s Engagement Team have begun working with secondary schools in Perth to pilot a new version of the programme for pupils aged 12 and 13.

The One Dance UK Magazine | Autumn 2022 33 Focus on Innovation
“You can be who you want to be without hiding it”
Catherine Cassidy Photos: Eve McConnachie & Andy Ross Scottish Ballet, Safe to Be Me Primary Schools Workshops

Access to the Arts for All

One Dance UK has been consulting with the Child Poverty Action Group looking at barriers to accessing dance and how our programmes for young people can minimise their barriers for participation. Hear from Georgina Burt, England Development Manager with CPAG, and Laura Nicholson, Head of Children and Young People’s Dance at One Dance UK.

3.9 million children are currently growing up in poverty in the UK. That’s 8 in an average classroom of 30. Growing up in poverty affects all parts of childhood, from how well children do at school, to how happy they are and their health.

Through our UK Cost of the School Day project, we have heard how hidden costs create barriers to education, opportunities and fun at school. Children and parents have told us that children are unable to learn to play a musical instrument because of the cost of tuition; miss out on trips because they can’t pay for them; sit out of P.E. when they don’t have the designated kit; and can’t attend school productions because of the cost of purchasing tickets. Children living in poverty miss out on childhood opportunities at school because family finances are stretched.

Pupils in receipt of free school meals are 39% less likely to take music at GCSE than their peers 1, and when those in low-income families do take music as a GCSE option, they attain at a level 1.4 grades lower than those not receiving free school meals. As well as missing out on opportunities through the school curriculum, research also shows that children growing up in poverty are less likely to take part in extra-curricular opportunities outside of school including sports and performing arts2.

There has long been a profound mismatch between what families with a low income have, and what they need to get by. Lower-income families have experienced

over a decade of austerity, followed by the pandemic and now the current cost of living crisis. We know that the winter ahead will be incredibly challenging, with soaring costs and energy prices stretching household budgets. And we know that many families on low incomes have nothing left to cut back. Nothing to fall back on.

National and local governments need to take action to end child poverty once and for all. However, there’s a role for those of us who work with children, young people and families too. We must ensure that young people are protected from the full consequences of poverty. We must all explore what we can do in our individual organisations and roles to ensure that no child misses out on the opportunities that we offer. From reviewing transport costs, to making kit and costume requirements affordable and subsidising club fees, taking small, practical steps like these will ease the challenges families are currently facing. These are essential and will help increase inclusion for children and young people in valuable dance, arts and sporting opportunities.

Further information

Child Poverty Action Group:


Cost of the School Day:





34 The One Dance UK Magazine | Autumn 2022 Focus on Innovation
“When it comes to arts specifically, we know that children from lowerincome households often miss out.”
Photo: CPAG & Dani Bower

As a sector we are already acutely aware that access to dance education – prior to the current cost of living crisis - was already far from being a level playing field for the UK’s children and young people. One Dance UK’s 2021 report Everything We Loved About Dance Was Taken highlighted that since 2010 there has been a severe decline in the availability of dance in schools, with shifting educational priorities and trends, funding cuts and the pandemic all playing their part.

There is no doubt that children and young people living in poverty are disproportionately impacted by the reduction and removal of dance in school settings. Where dance is a genuine choice for young people, it remains an extremely popular physical activity. There is a wealth of dance activity available in out-of-school settings - but often these activities come at a cost. In these increasingly challenging times, we are in grave danger of dance only being a pathway available for those who can afford it, creating a two-tier system. Dance is in very real danger of becoming the preserve of the elite.

At this time of additional financial challenge for everyone – education providers, dance organisations and individuals alike – it is important to consider what steps can be taken to help children and young people living in poverty remain engaged in dance activity. Taking inspiration from CPAG’s Cost of the School Day calendar, we consider some of the possibilities:

Dance shoes and clothing – Can dress codes be relaxed, allowing alternative nonbranded or non-regulation options?

– Is there a system that allows students to donate preloved specialist items and shoes?

Fees for classes and activities

– Do parents/carers have a range of payment options (e.g. termly or monthly) to allow them to manage their cash flow?

Where activities are free or subsidised

– Do parents/carers have to make a payment up front and then claim it back? This may be a barrier for some.

Scheduling planned activity

– Can parents/carers be given an indication of all activities, trips, workshops etc. at the start of the year, along with an estimation of any costs and clear guidance on whether these activities are compulsory or optional?

– Are activities regularly scheduled at the same time each week, to help older students who might also work and parents/carers to maintain a regular work pattern?

Off-site activities, trips and visits

– Is the activity easily accessible on foot/by public transport or will more expensive taxis be necessary? What is the cost of parking?

– Is there an opportunity to bring and store packed food rather than having to buy food and drink on site?

One Dance UK is committed to developing its resources and support to help all children and young people access dance education. We welcome your input and are happy to work with member organisations to share resources and advice.

Further information

One Dance UK would love to hear thoughts and suggestions from across the sector.


One Dance UK Dance in Education Report, Everything We Loved About Dance Was Taken:

The One Dance UK Magazine | Autumn 2022 35 Focus on Innovation
Photos: Dani Bower Scottish Ballet Youth Exchange and MOVE|NYC| perform Co-Lab at U.Dance National Festival 2022, MAC Birmingham

Breakin’ Stereotypes


innovative approaches to community dance by Charlie Blair, Founder of The Blair Academy, a social enterprise centred on healthy, happy ageing through hip hop dance.

The Blair Academy aims to disrupt assumptions and drastically change the approach to entertaining and engaging older adults. Our innovative approach promotes intergenerational community cohesion, encourages healthy ageing, and provides an opportunity for people to feel that they have learnt something new, whilst honouring memories and music from their past.

Since 2018 we have engaged over 6000 people across a multitude of care and community settings, and our diverse team boasts an impressive mix of performers, carers and therapists with an inclusive approach.

Our sessions focus on hip hop, which as a music and social dance style, was originally created in the early 1970s by Black and Latino communities. Creating their own, energetic movement language was a way of sharing and celebrating their diverse stories. Hip hop welcomes you as you are, brings people together, and encourages you to honour what your body can do. In our sessions, participants don’t need to look exactly like the instructor – they can move at their own pace, doing what’s comfortable for them, and adding their own flavour.

There is currently a wealth of research which demonstrates the power of dance. Often, we focus on the physical benefits of movement. Contrary to some misconceptions, ageing muscles respond well to movement and dance is a great way to build/retain strength, mobility, and co-ordination. In turn, this can help older people maintain more independence and decrease their risk of falling.

Beyond physical health, it has been shown that group dance enhances wellbeing for older people in a number of other ways:

– Cognitive skills: learning something new and sequencing steps together are integral for stimulating attention span and learning. In turn, this can support recalling and retaining memories.

– Social benefits: dance has universal appeal and can

enhance relationships through shared experiences, while ensuring we have quality social interactions can lower mortality rate and increase life satisfaction.

– Emotional value: a non-invasive way of encouraging feelings of joy, empowerment, confidence and selfexpression.

It’s important to consider how musical tastes will vary and shift as care home populations continue to diversify. For example, an 80-year-old would have been 28 in 1970, when hip hop dance and music influence started to spread. The music styles which preceded it, such as rock n roll, soul, funk, and disco music, are also very popular at present.

With the ever-changing landscape of people living in care homes, in terms of age groups, cultural groups, preferences and life experiences, we need to be mindful of adapting our approach to ensure we’re planning and delivering activities that resonate. The Care Quality Commission (CQC) has now made ‘cultural competence’ an integral part of their inspection process which they use to rate homes. This includes sensitivity to people’s cultural identity or heritage, and being responsive to beliefs or conventions that might be determined by cultural heritage.

All of us will grow older and it’s essential that activity providers keep evolving with the times to deliver relatable, culturally sensitive activities. We believe all people deserve high quality, varied options for keeping fit and having fun, which resonate with their life experiences as they age.

Further Information

The Blair Academy offers free trial sessions in care homes, free weekly Zoom dance sessions and a subscription service.

Charlie Blair was recently recognised by the Prime Minister’s Office through the Points of Light scheme and also voted one of the ‘Top 15 Entrepreneurs to Watch in 2022’, by Starling Bank.

36 The One Dance UK Magazine | Autumn 2022 Features
Charlie Blair Photos: Dennis George & Martine Stephen Blair Academy community dance classes

Tom’s Journey

In 2019 at 13 years old, dancer Tom was diagnosed with PostConcussion Syndrome. Tom and his mother, Niki, have since been on a challenging journey of recovery and discovery that has not been without its challenges.

Thanks to the support of dancespecialist healthcare practitioners such as Neuro-Linguistic Programming specialist Frances Collier, Tom is now back on his feet. He is dancing with youth companies across the West Midlands including at the U.Dance National Festival in July.

Frances, what is Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP), and how, in Tom’s case, has your treatment been so beneficial?

NLP looks at: the language of how we say things (‘linguistics’); how this informs our nervous systems (‘neuro’); and how this influences our behavioural patterns (‘programme’).

Instead of telling Tom what he

couldn’t do, we explored the many small moves that still made sense to his brain and his body. Through Tom’s reclaimed words of recovery, his brain and body could re-connect, re-communicate, and re-coordinate, physically and emotionally.

Tom, how has the experience of working with Frances been different to that of other, nondance-specialist practitioners?

Frances took the time to see me as a person, and as a dancer, not just an injured child who used to dance. Frances recognised the value dance held in my life.

Has working with Frances affected your understanding of your condition, and how it interacts with your dancing body?

It has definitely had a positive effect on how I view my condition. Frances showed me that by using visualisation, and my existing dance skills, I could

reignite old pathways and build new ones. By gradually building on my progress, I have regained the ability to walk and dance.

Niki, I understand that finding Tom the right support has been a complex process. What happened when you met Frances?

Reaching out to the dance community was the best decision I made. I remember feeling an overwhelming sense of relief, someone was listening. From our first conversation with Frances, I knew she understood. Within a few short weeks, I began to see positive changes in Tom, and saw the light come back into his eyes as he danced with his brother and sister.

Further Information

Read an in-depth version of this article in One Dance UK's Wellbeing Wednesday Writing:

Frances Collier's work:

The One Dance UK Magazine | Autumn 2022 37 Features
Jessica Lowe discusses the triumphs of innovative dance-specific healthcare with Tom Boho, Niki Boho and Frances Collier. Tom Boho Niki Boho Frances Collier Photos: N. Boho, F. Collier & Dani Bower Tom Boho (R) performing with DanceXchange Centre for Advanced Training at U.Dance National Festival 2022, MAC Birmingham
38 The One Dance UK Magazine | Autumn 2022 J O I N U S f o r o u r M A R K E T P L A C E - 1 1 t h F e b r u a r y 2 3 | T R Y O U T a r a n g e o f s t y l e s f o r F R E E V i s i t w w w . m o r l e y c o l l e g e . a c . u k / c o u r s e s / s u b j e c t - a r e a s / d a n c e / f o r a l l o u r c o u r s e s a n d o p p o r t u n i t i e s D A N C E at Morley flamenco C O O R D I N A T I O N charleston to swing dance rhythm tap M U S I C A L I T Y tanztheater E X P R E S S I O N ballet T E C H N I Q U E P O S T U R E performance groups C O M P O S I T I O N rambert grades P R O G R E S S I V E T R A I N I N G F I T N E S S ballroom and latin P A R T N E R D A N C E M O V E M E N T kathak T R A D I T I O N silver swans M A T U R E D A N C E R S regenerate P O I S E back to basics F O U N D A T I O N S tap F O O T W O R K dance stretch E N J O Y M E N T chair-based exercise T H E R A P E U T I C pilates H O L I S T I C cuban rhythms T E C H N I Q U E latin bounce back S W E A T urban line dance English country dancing F O L K L O R E jitterbug dance S O C I A L D A N C E belly dance D I S S O C I A T I O N salsa zumba®fitness C A R D I O creative harmony I M P R O V I S A T I O N R H Y T H M movement direction D I R E C T I O N F L A V O U R C H O R E O G R A P H Y S W I N G D A N C E C U L T U R E F U N timba salsa C U B A N D A N C E Friday Lates D A N C E S O C I A L S

The UK’s platform for dance of the African Diaspora

HOTFOOT, now in its 21st year, offers a platform for artists who work within dance styles of the African Diaspora and beyond. One Dance UK is platforming artists and collaborators across a range of media in the coming months, so keep an eye out for more perspectives.

In this special HOTFOOT feature, we welcome three of our most popular contributors from recent editions to offer their perspective on innovation to the One magazine audience.

Innovators, Inventors and Producers

To introduce this special section, Dr S. Ama Wray, award-winning creative, lecturer and author and part of the original editorial team of HOTFOOT, reflects on the innate creativity of dance of the African Diaspora.

When I think of innovation, I think of a novel way of doing something that has perhaps already been established and accepted as being done in a particular way. So how does dance innovate? Do we create new ways of demonstrating our poetic kinesis?

In this case the ‘we’ are those that include African sensibilities in our ways of being. We are the people that hold the DNA of the oldest human dancers on the planet and for that reason alone we of course are innovators, inventors and producers of novelty.

The ubiquity of dance throughout Africa and the Diaspora is allied very closely with music; indeed, in many cases the name of the dance is simultaneously the same as that of the music. Their partnering often comes from their social, ritual or healing origin point whereby there is a rich exchange between sound and sensation.

If you have not yet been to a place where you can witness the novelty that arises from within a space where dance and music are in dialogue, then you may not have had the opportunity to understand how the drum and the dancer, the DJ and the breaker coalesce to confer

each other with opportunity to generate novelty, disrupt, iterate, remember and expound. The dancer, who may themselves also be considered a sensory beatmaker, challenges themselves within a community of creators to generate original ideas.

Those that witness a stirring innovation that expands their imagination of what is possible find the dexterity to echo it back, confirming that a breakthrough has taken shape.

The list is long – tap dance, azunto, capoeira, salsa, tango, flamenco, breaking, lindy hop, locking, dancehall, Afrobeat, tuttin’… need I say more?

Dr. S. Ama Wray is a TEDx Speaker and Professor at the University of California, Irvine, serving in both the Claire Trevor School of the Arts and the School of Humanities, where she is also the co-principal investigator of the Africana Institute for Creativity, Recognition and Elevation. She was formerly Founding Chair of the Association of Dance of the African Diaspora (ADAD) in the UK.

Dr Wray received her Ph.D. in Dance Studies from the University of Surrey. Her examinations of West African cultures led to the creation of Embodiology®, a transformational methodology based on West African principles of human communication.

Photo: Skye Schmidt Access previous editions of HOTFOOT Online:

The COVID-19 pandemic’s radical disruptions to so many of our routines, revenues and relationships ultimately showed all of us how much we need and value connection. The unprecedented acceleration in the digitisation of art and culture resulted in a massive expansion in online consumption of, but also participation in, the arts and creative industries. The voice of artists, the true histories of art forms and those who contributed, the untold stories of so many in the arts and cultural sector are now accessible through digital platforms.

There is a clear and intentional shift underway to explore creativity as a form of resilience. Artists and arts organisations across the world adapted and where we once engaged in their art in the physical performance space, we now continue to do so virtually. Digital platforms are still streaming dance and theatre performances. Orchestras are still broadcasting their performances online through virtual concert halls. Festivals have partnered with entities like Google Arts & Culture to deliver live content. Artists are posting online classes, tutorials and daily art challenges from home. You name it, even though we are mostly able to be back in person, many things creative can be experienced online.

Access to arts and culture during the pandemic has been vital for so many: stimulating creativity, supporting health and well-being, and advancing cultural connectivity. Digital technologies recreated the spaces in which people usually engage the arts as these entities continue to reopen to their pre-pandemic capacities.

What was once thought upon as an aside and/ or alternative programming, new digital content and platforms have become the answer for many to deliver their art to their audiences. Cultural consumption and

40 The One Dance UK Magazine | Autumn 2022 HOTFOOT
Denise Saunders Thompson, President and CEO, The International Association of Blacks in Dance (IABD), acknowledges the importance of continuing to find new ways of connecting with artists and audiences.
“Arts and culture have become an even more integral part of most of our daily lives thanks to the initiative and innovation of artists.”
Denise Saunders Thompson Photos: Omar Ingram & Geek With A Lens Cleo Parker Robinson Dance

participation in the arts as a result of the global pandemic are changing and will continue to change for a long time to come. The arts and cultural sectors are organically exploring their role in finding new solutions through innovation and resilience in response to the social isolation set forth by the pandemic.

To stay afloat, to keep our sanity, to release and relieve the pressure, to heal, to bridge cultural divides, to share our stories, to reveal our truths, to continue to create by any means necessary, we innovate our art forms.

The arts have this special ability to help people heal and process their emotions. We need that now, more than ever. The arts are so important to the well-being of communities. There is healing through the arts. The prolonged remote environment forced the artistic and creative industries to consider how to continue to provide value to society as we have.

The pandemic highlighted how important it is to engage in mutually beneficial collaborations and partnerships that foster innovation. Arts and cultural organisations are rethinking audience and cultural engagement through digital approaches as well as continuing to commission artists to create and inspire new work.

Artists and arts organisations are now online and creating greater accessibility with programming for everyone wherever one might be in the world. Yet, we must acknowledge and recognise in many parts of the world, digital solutions are still not an option. An estimated 3.6 billion people remain totally offline, particularly in developing countries. In some countries, digital penetration is only around 35 percent, meaning that two in three people do not yet have access to online content.

We must work to continue to address those inequities, so that everyone has access to the arts. There is new motivation to change. How we leverage this opportunity to make fundamental change for the arts and cultural sector as well as society as a whole, has become immediately apparent.

While we continue to face daunting challenges as a result of the global pandemic, artists and arts organisations are continuing to discover and find innovative ways to adapt, survive and thrive. ‘Arts Innovation and Resilience’ at their highest.

Solutions to sustain the arts and cultural sector - and ultimately to help shape what it looks like post-pandemic - will continue to depend on creative solutions that leverage all that artists, arts organisations, foundations, government, private sector, and the public can bring together during these challenging times.

Let us continue to be more flexible and adaptable structurally and programmatically, responsive to all communities, open to evolving ways of making and receiving art that is relevant to peoples’ lives and needs and embrace broader and more inclusive audiences. And we all must approach our work, our institutions, and the people we impact, and those we would like to engage, with love, honour, and respect.

A Luta Continua…the “good” work continues…

Further information

IABD’s 33rd Annual International Conference & Festival, Globally Connected, What Does Our Tomorrow Hold? takes place in Toronto, Canada, January 25 - 29, 2023.

To register:

The One Dance UK Magazine | Autumn 2022 41
Bush Women
Photo: Geek With A Lens

In the past decade the UK has seen an emergence of a third wave (people in their 20s and 30s) of hip hop pioneers who have been creating a mix of performances, events, battles, research and programmes, deepening and challenging their connection to the culture. They have been building on the learnings from previous generations and recognising their social responsibility.

Developing the Hip Hop Dance Almanac

The Hip Hop Dance Almanac is a media platform committed to commissioning and archiving the stories and voices of hip hop dance in the UK and internationally. Launched in 2018, it presents primary accounts of those people who are active and an integral part of the hip hop dance community’s broad diaspora.

I started my long form interviews for the Hip Hop Dance Alamanac in 2018, to preserve hip hop voices and record what people had to say on a wide range of topics. Talking points have included craft and practice, choreographic lineages, toxic masculinity, ableism, mental health, corruption, gender violence, archiving, kinship, nourishment, hip hop theatre, battling, erasure, success, memories, COVID-19, musicality, binaries, autobiography and what people want to dismantle.

Blackstock, Kloe Dean, John Berkavitch, Emma Ready, Julia Cheng, Botis Seva, Jo and Toby Gorniak MBE, Paris Crossley, Shanelle Clemenson and dozens of others who are doing pioneering work in the field.

Bringing together the hip hop dance community

My introduction to hip hop dance started when I was working for Dance South West. In late 2009 we were building a new dance centre - Pavilion Dance - which would open in Bournemouth in 2010. It was part of my role to build a programme of activity with different communities across the region and this was when I met Nick (Freeze Fine) Palmer, Paul (Lacemaster) Spencer and John (DJ Junk) Isaacs from Second To None crew alongside b-girl Angela Reece. They were looking for somewhere to host their breakin’ jam, Vile Style 4.

At the time I had access to the ballroom in the Pavilion Theatre and was able to offer it to them. Fast-forward a few months to 11 April 2010, and Vile Style 4 was taking place in a 1920s ballroom with panoramic views of the sea and Bournemouth’s Lower Gardens whilst b-boys and b-girls took over the 15m x 15m highly polished, sprung wooden floor.

My relationship with Vile Style, Second To None and Angela continued until I left Bournemouth in late 2014. To complement it I commissioned and presented a number of hip hop theatre performances, invited Secret Walls x Bournemouth for graffiti battles and curated large scale outdoor dance classes to sit alongside the jams in the newly christened umbrella event B-Town Throwdown.

Each volume of the Hip Hop Dance Almanac contains between 10-12 interviews. It is published annually and has over 100,000 words per volume. Subjects have so far included Clara Bajado, Yami ‘Rowdy’ Löfvenberg, Ivan

Seeing this generous, knowledgeable and highly skilled community of breakers and hip hop heads come to an English seaside town each year to jam, socialise, battle and pay respects to the pioneering status of Second To None were some of the highlights of my time in Bournemouth. It also set me on my journey with hip hop dance.

42 The One Dance UK Magazine | Autumn 2022 HOTFOOT
A journey archiving the rich stories of the hip hop community in the UK and globally, by Ian Abbott, Founder of the Hip Hop Dance Almanac.
“In mainstream media we rarely get to hear what hip hop dance artists think about wider issues, so it’s crucial that these opinions are documented.”
Ian Abbott
Photo: Odd Venture

Supporting and preserving dancer voices

Over the past few years, alongside my work as an independent dance producer, I have created new platforms which relate to the Hip Hop Dance Almanac and support how hip hop dance is written about, recorded and viewed.

Remixing Criticism – Hip Hop Dance Under the Microscope, launched in July 2020, is a robust and text-based interactive critique of hip hop, dance, criticism, institutional power and the erasure of women in the UK. Part outsider commentary, part reflective essay and part detailed critique, it blends styles, approaches and formalities to offer a new perspective of hip hop dance in the UK. View it here: RemixingCriticism.

In August 2021 I curated a digital festival of international hip hop work for ZOOTV as part of their online programme during the Edinburgh Fringe Festival. It featured live performances, rich discussions, interactive adventures, film premieres, episodic series and more.

November 2021 saw the launch of Ink Cypher, a space

Celebrating Hip Hop Artists

of dialogue intended to build energy and hear from a range of hip hop voices through long form writing. Ink Cypher features are original deep dives on specific topics and perspectives on hip hop dance that people cannot find anywhere else. Round 1 involved commissioning hip hop heads around the world to contribute exclusive, original features. Rounds 2 and 3 involve writings that have answered, responded to or challenged those in Round 1, and all are published in the Hip Hop Dance Almanac. Readers will encounter essays, historical works, institutional critique, responses and lifestyle pieces from people around the world. View them here: As one person who is interested hip hop dance, what’s important to me is exploring how can we build platforms for people to record their encounters, histories and perspectives. We must ensure that new spaces for hip hop are created while preserving what is already in place.

Further information

“For decades, hip hop dance has had to work hard to be taken seriously in the arts sector, with the form constantly being scrutinised and questioned for its significance. Hip hop celebrates its 50 year anniversary in 2023. Most hip hop dancing pioneers are still with us and this makes it even more important to celebrate the living legends who helped shape our artistic landscape.

We need to invest in recording their voices, methods and processes through platforms like the Hip Hop Dance Almanac.We need to show equal importance to archiving as we have done with other dance forms, so this history does not get lost or forgotten.

The multi-layered movement language of hip hop dance provides a crucial voice for those who do not see themselves represented in artistic spaces. Hip hop has been, and always will be, for the people, by the people.”

The One Dance UK Magazine | Autumn 2022 43
Photo: Robert Alleyne

This year has certainly been a year to remember. With such turbulence, you could be forgiven for feeling somewhat down and anxious about today and the future. Wherever you are in the world, chances are that life is offering you a few day-to-day curve balls. I totally resonate with this, however – as the saying goeswhat you choose to focus on you become, right? Positive psychologists believe that by focusing on your character strengths , you can improve your quality of life and thus thrive with an optimistic outlook.

So, what if one of your character strengths is kindness? Could you use it to cultivate a feeling of glass half full, even when it feels like the glass is completely shattered and haemorrhaging liquid everywhere?

Below are my thoughts on self-kindness and how it can support you to get through the day without hanging yourself out to dry in the process.

Be Kind to Yourself

Is it fair to say that you are your own worst critic? Especially when you want to do or be better, fear failure, are experiencing low self-esteem or depression or have had childhood experiences that lead you to believe you are unworthy?

Now imagine a loved one has come to you upset because of a mistake they’d made, or with feelings of disappointment and self-doubt. Upon hearing this, would you add fuel to the fire and agree? Tell them what stupid mistakes they’ve made and say they could have done better? Chances are you’d immediately swathe them in love and reassurances. You’d probably avoid judgement and criticism and instead reinforce their successes and try to build their confidence. Right?

When those feelings of self-doubt and criticism come from within, and you’re asking yourself for reassurance, are you your own ally in the same way? Do you remember that it's ok to be messy, because that's how you grow? Self-criticism limits your growth and reduces your ability to take risks. It perpetuates anxiety due to a fear of being ’wrong’ but what if you could replace self-criticism with self-compassion?

Self-compassion reminds you that you are worthy of love despite your imperfections. It reminds you that you deserve love, kindness, and compassion on good and bad days because - like every other human being on this planet - you are flawed! It's natural to err, and you are not alone when things fall apart, it happens to us all.

So how do you offer yourself self-compassion? Just as a delicious cake comes out of a well-balanced recipe, so too is self-compassion made from three balanced ingredients. These ingredients are self-kindness, believing that everyone stumbles or falls, and being mindful. So, if you can care for yourself without judgment, realise that everyone is flawed and imperfect, and experience each moment with clarity and balance, then you can indulge in a well-balanced slice of self-compassion.

44 The One Dance UK Magazine | Autumn 2022 HOTFOOT
Dancers are known for seeking perfection, and all too often we are very self-critical. Finding time and compassion for yourself can help you find balance, positively affecting your overall wellbeing, writes psychotherapist and coach Nicolette Wilson-Clarke FACCPH.
“With self-compassion you can shift from the feeling of loneliness often felt during self-criticism to a feeling of acceptance and forgiveness.”
Nicolette Wilson-Clarke Photo: The Creative Genius

1. Remember that you are not your crisis

How you react and behave in the moment of crisis may be out of your usual character, so upon reflection remember that you're not at your best at these times.

Your reaction is an immediate response to the situation at hand, and who you become in the moment depends on the tools you have. So, be kind to yourself by recognising that you showed up! You used the resources you had at the time - whatever that looked like - and that's all you could do. If those resources were not sufficient to support you, then acknowledge that you may need help in developing and exploring them.

Practicing self-kindness here will remind you that a crisis is not a true reflection of who you are. Selfcompassion will create space to see that you are not your crisis.

2. Avoid taking a mental selfie of yourself

It is very easy to get caught up in the mental freeze frame of a situation where you ruminate on it for hours and refuse to give yourself a break.

Take effective action to change this by deliberately breaking the pattern and asking yourself what you’ve learnt from the situation. How could you do it differently next time, especially if others were involved?

3. Journalling

If you don't have access to a community, then writing or voice recording are excellent alternatives. Reading your own written words or hearing yourself back can really help you to see the truth of the situation and offer a compassionate perspective.

When you also include a daily gratitude you make space for forgiveness, understanding and kindness, plus it can work as a reminder that you always have a choice.

When you choose self-kindness and self-compassion over self-criticism and judgement, you prepare for a life open to curiosity, self-awareness and the courage to question your inner critic.

With these choices, why wouldn’t you choose a life of self-love and self-kindness every day?

Further information

Nicolette Wilson-Clarke FACCPH is founder of The Creative Genius, and is a psychotherapist and coach trained in psychology, psychotherapy, counselling, Emotional Intelligence, CBT (Cognitive Behavioural Therapy), DBT (Dialectical Behavioural Therapy), Somatic Coaching, Transformational Coaching and Master Coaching.


The One Dance UK Magazine | Autumn 2022 45
Photos: Dani Bower Odai, Sugar and Spin
Libby Here are three practical ways to focus on selfkindness whilst loving who you are and living with both acceptance and forgiveness:

Dance: A Safe Space for All

How can we be accommodating of neurodiversity in dance?

Jessica Lowe spoke to former classical ballet dancer Prof. Almuth McDowall, Professor of Organisational Psychology at Birkbeck University of London. Almuth specialises in diversity and inclusion, occupational health psychology and professional competence at work.

In your experience and work, how might a neurodiverse dancer be experiencing dance differently to someone who is ‘neurotypical’?

Can I start by clarifying what we mean by ‘neurodiversity’? The term originates from the work of hugely influential sociologist Judy Singer. Her writing argued to frame all human functioning as biodiversity, including how we think, feel and act.

There are conditions (or neurominorities, or neurotypes) that make people different, such as autism, dyslexia, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) or mental health issues. Judy’s work encouraged everyone to look at strengths, not just deficits. I suspect that many dancers are ADHD-ers – hands up who was sent to dance school because they would not sit still? A dancer who has a different neurotype might be particularly good at experiencing the world in a sensory way – hearing music differently or more poignantly, having a real need to express through movement and not through words.

From your own work, can you give some examples of how the dance sector can be thinking about, and accommodating neurodiversity?

A good place to start is your own observations – how do you observe that dancers are doing their best work? What are good practices that help everyone? One of the features of a neurodivergent mind (although I don’t like this word too much!) is great sensory sensitivity. A cluttered, noisy studio where music mixes with voices can be distracting. A calm environment with good lighting benefits everyone. Regular breaks are important, too, as is giving people the opportunity to take solitary time out - their social batteries might be empty.

Our research shows that there is a big gap between what people think neurodiversity is, and what it means in practice. Take the example of dyslexia. Most think that it’s about reading and writing difficulties. We find common challenges are forgetting things, self-organisation and managing stress levels. So, a holistic approach to dance and education is vital. We should ensure that dance educators and leaders have some knowledge and know when to consult professionals as appropriate.

What advice would you give to those seeking to make their dance business, school, or organisation more inclusive and accessible for neurodiverse dance students or professionals? Where might somebody start?

– Engage a specialist for introductory training

– Don’t make assumptions about why someone is not performing – forgetting a rehearsal time might not mean they don’t want to do it; perhaps their mind finds it hard to remember

– Put genuine inclusion at the heart of your practice. What benefits neurodiverse dancers benefits everyone.

– Ensure that you canvass what people’s needs are and listen attentively. Commit to action plans and put these into practice.

– Remember your legal obligations – the Equality Act 2010 says that when someone reports a protected characteristic (and several neurodiverse conditions are recognized disabilities) then the environment must adapt to the individual. Not the other way around.

46 The One Dance UK Magazine | Autumn 2022 Features
Photo: A. McDowall

In your experience, what might be some simple approaches that we as a sector could adopt to better accommodate people’s individual differences?

Greater schedule flexibility, both formally and informally, paired with clear communication and considered scheduling of work. Often, rehearsal times are changed at short notice, and casting decisions announced with little lead time. Our research has shown that this needs careful consideration to make the sector more inclusive.

What kinds of support are available for dancers who suspect they might be neurodiverse?

It can be difficult as an adult to get a diagnosis, as waiting lists on the NHS are long. Think about a private diagnosis – might your employer or school even pay for this?

An alternative consideration could be a cognitive assessment to profile your strengths and weaknesses. This is done by a psychologist. They can recommend onward referrals, and specialist providers will link in with government schemes such as ‘Access to Work’ (see link below). A few sessions with a specialist workplace strategy coach can be beneficial.

I am less keen on some of the self-diagnostic tools out there (although we are developing a better one!) and please all be mindful of non-professional mental health advice on TikTok!

Further information

Useful resources and links: One Dance UK’s free resource – Considering Difference: Neurodiversity Hub: Access to Work:

Prof. Almuth McDowall has set up the UK’s first research centre for neurodiversity at work, together with her friend and research partner Dr Nancy Doyle. More information:

The One Dance UK Magazine | Autumn 2022 47 Features
Photos: Dani Bower
“Think beyond performances to make dance ‘good work’ all around: this must include compassionate, authentic, and transparent leadership.”
Our Lady and St Chad Catholic College Tanya-Louise Rose and James Hickman

Young Innovators

Dance and other creative outlets have long been used as a form of self-expression by young people. After the well-documented challenges and disruption of recent years and at a time when creative and practical subjects are marginalised in the formal education system with a focus on so-call “knowledge-based learning”, it seems that young people may need opportunities to use their voice more than ever.

One Dance UK’s Young Creatives programme is a unique UKwide scheme designed to identify, nurture and develop choreographic talent in young people aged 16+ over a twoyear period. Skills development sessions in Year 1 allow participants to develop their own choreographic toolkit, regardless of prior experience, and explore a range of working practices with professional choreographers, which have previously included Carrie-Anne Ingrouille (Six The Musical), Botis Seva (Far From The Norm) and Kate Flatt OBE. Year 2 sees participants receive bespoke mentoring and support to develop a creative idea from initial spark through to finished work on a professional stage.

This desire to explore and challenge the world around them and to raise societal issues that matter to them was clear in the outstanding programme of work presented this summer by the Young Creatives 2022 cohort at Midlands Arts Centre (MAC). The young choreographers did not shy away from tackling challenging and complex themes, including the length of the NHS waiting list, Marcus

Rashford’s public campaign for access to Free School Meals for children and the state of liminality experienced by a patient ill with Covid-19.

Two members of the young Creatives 2022 cohort share their experiences:

“The experience I’ve had on the Young Creatives programme has been incredible. It not only gave me a platform to showcase my choreography, but also gave me the opportunity to meet, collaborate and share feedback with like-minded people. The regular support of a mentor throughout the creative process provided me with techniques to help shape my vision for the choreographic piece. I learned to question what could be interpreted from the piece, thus, learning to be decisive with what I chose to leave on the stage.” – Nina Grindley

“Being part of Young Creatives was one of the best things I have ever done. I completed the programme with a new-found love for choreography and collaboration and a completely new outlook on the creative arts industry.”

– Jasmine Ainley-Kaur

Become a Young Creative

No formal experience is necessary – applications are welcome from young people who love movement and making dance in any dance style.

Young Creatives is aimed at young people aged 16-20, however if you are over 20 and feel you would benefit from taking part then we’d love to hear from you.

Further Information:

48 The One Dance UK Magazine | Autumn 2022 Features
Applications to join the Young Creatives programme in 2023 are now open! Young Creatives is proudly supported by The Place and London Contemporary Dance School Photos: Dani Bower Nottingham Hub perform CONNECTIONS at Young Creatives Showcase 2022 Vidya Patel advises Young Creatives participants

Make Your Case

Advice on applying for unrestricted funding by Emily DysonHawkes,

of The Institute for Voluntary Action Research (IVAR).

Firstly, what do we mean by unrestricted funding? It’s a term that’s often used interchangeably with ‘core funding’, but they aren’t the same thing.

Unrestricted funding has no strings attached: it can be used for anything within your charitable objects. Core funding usually describes a grant restricted to either a specific element of overheads (like rental costs or the Director's salary) or to be used for essential running costs more broadly.

Through our research into unrestricted funding, we have found seven ways that it adds value to funded organisations:

1. better use of expertise: It respects the experience, skills and knowledge of funded organisations, freeing them to make informed judgements about the best use of funds.

2. more flexibility and agility: It recognises that the future is unpredictable and enables funded organisations to manage well in uncertainty, responding quickly to changing circumstances and needs.

3. more effective work: It maximises the chances of delivering the greatest positive impact for the communities and causes that we all care about.

4. better relationships: It helps level the power relationship and opens the way for greater mutual honesty between organisations and their funders.

5. building confidence: A more supportive, less transactional funding relationship significantly boosts funded organisations.

6. lighter processes: It reduces bureaucracy for all parties.

7. reduced organisational risk and greater resilience: Unrestricted funding gives organisations much greater scope to cover all essential costs, deal with challenges quickly and effectively, and experiment.

Over 100 Open and Trusting Grantmakers committed to sharing what kind of funding they offer and to being as flexible as they can. You can find out who they are here:

When you're applying for unrestricted funding, here are some questions worth asking yourself:

• How would you use unrestricted funding? It can provide the opportunity and resources to plan, test new things, improve services or provide security. Some organisations use their funding to establish and strengthen back-office functions like finance, IT and human resources.

• Are you making it easy for funders to say yes? Be clear about the difference this kind of funding would make to your organisation. What will it mean for your beneficiaries? Will it create a step-change in how you deliver your services?

You can read more about the mechanics of how it all works from a funder point of view in The Holy Grail of Funding (link below). As part of our research, Philippa Charles from the Garfield Weston Foundation shared with us: “If an organisation's core is secure, that will create opportunities for them to experiment, take their own risks, form new relationships, and continue to improve.”

Further information

Read IVAR’s free guide The Holy Grail of Funding:

Join IVAR’s community to influence funder practice:

The One Dance UK Magazine | Autumn 2022 49 Features
Chloe Davies at Rubicon Dance Photos: IVAR & Dani Bower Emily Dyson-Hawkes

The National Institute of Dance Medicine and Science: 10 Years On

A Collaboration Years in the Making


Fit to Dance 2 findings released Dancers lack access to healthcare, money is barrier to accessing treatment and advice.


Dancers’ Health Pilot Scheme launched Campaign to develop multidisciplinary hubs to improve access and affordability of comprehensive, dance specific healthcare and dance science support services for all dancers.


Fundraising campaign begins Many organisations and individual givers generously support the proposal to create the first National Institute of Dance Medicine and Science. First specialist dance injury service embedded within the NHS whilst fundraising continues.


NIDMS officially launched

First NHS dance injury clinic opens at the Royal National Orthopaedic Hospital, London led by Dr Roger Wolman.


NIDMS opens its third NHS dance injury clinic at the Royal United Hospital, Bath in partnership with the Dance Again Foundation

NIDMS London NHS clinic treats its 300th dancer.


The Royal Ballet joins NIDMS as a partner

NIDMS provides consultations to dance companies on dancer health and wellbeing policies, works with GPs to raise awareness of NIDMS dance injury clinics and promote referrals, hosts a West End dancers focus group.

NIDMS clinic data is presented at the International Association for Dance Medicine and Science (IADMS) conference.


Second NHS dance injury clinic at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital, Birmingham launched with Harlequin Floors presenting NIDMS with a cheque for £10,000.

NIDMS' London NHS dance injury clinic treats its 100th dancer.


Launch of annual two-day dance medicine and science research workshop

NIDMS partner, University of Wolverhampton, hosts workshop which provides a forum for researchers to share work and discuss together.


Performance Optimisation Package launched

Affordable access to a multidisciplinary team, dance science support, and preventative services.

Harlequin Floors becomes a principal sponsor, contributing £10,000 per year to NIDMS.


A new NIDMS Emergency Dance Injury clinic is opened at Mile End Hospital, London.

NIDMS raises £3400 from the Big Give Christmas Challenge.

50 The One Dance UK Magazine | Autumn 2022 Features
Harlequin Floors generously supporting the work of NIDMS Photo: NIDMS

The National Institute of Dance Medicine and Science (NIDMS) is a collaboration between One Dance UK, Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance, University of Wolverhampton, Jerwood Centre for the Prevention and Treatment of Dance Injury at Birmingham The Royal Ballet, University of Birmingham, and The Royal Ballet.

In 2022, NIDMS celebrates its 10-year anniversary. Since its inception, this world leading collaboration of dance healthcare organisations has assisted well over 1000 dancers and provided resources and information for many thousands more. We look back at some of the key milestones.


NIDMS celebrates 10 years!

Considering Difference –Making Dance Accessible: Information sheet is launched.

The first study in the NIDMS and University of Birmingham Self Harm PhD explores dance teachers' understanding and experiences of self-harm in their students and what kind of support dance teachers require.


One Dance UK and NIDMS bring together a panel to present Return to Dance webinars as a response to lockdown, disseminating government guidance and supporting the dance sector. Webinars reach nearly 10 000 viewers.

NIDMS collaborates on studies into mental health, safeguarding and abuse prevention, and self-harm among dancers.


POP Screening Taster Days are launched making NIDMS screenings more accessible and affordable, and include 1-1 intensive engagement, access to multiple experts, and individualised feedback.

NIDMS collaborates on investigation on COVID-19 pandemic’s impact on dancer mental health & wellbeing, and the GuiDANCE (Growing up in Dance) project.


A new NIDMS dance injury clinic in Mile End Hospital opens

Royal National Orthopaedic Hospital closes the NHS dance injury clinic. There is a widespread outcry in the dance sector and 7693 people sign a petition, #DancersMatter, to support the need for NHS services for dancers in London.

The One Dance UK Magazine | Autumn 2022 51 Features
NIDMS launch event, 2012 Dance health screenings, Trinity Laban Photos: Rick Senley & Dani Bower

Resources for the Dance Sector

As the sector support organisation for dance, One Dance UK offers a range of resources to supplement your work. The One Dance UK team consult with sector experts to bring you information on a range of topics, including:

• Dancer health and wellbeing

• Diversity and inclusion

• Teaching

We have gathered some of our recent resources and updates on our projects for you to access. Simply scan the QR code to find out more. Some resources are created exclusively for One Dance UK members and employees of member organisations. To discuss your membership, contact:

Dance Education and Careers

RIDE resource

Representation in Dance Education

National Youth Dance Company (NYDC) resource

Resource for teachers based on the acclaimed MADHEAD by Botis Seva

*For One Dance UK members

ZooNation: The Kate Prince Company resource

Resource for teachers based on the acclaimed Message in a Bottle

*For One Dance UK members

Guide to Careers in Dance

To be shared with young people interested in a career in dance

52 The One Dance UK Magazine | Autumn 2022 One Dance UK Resources

Inclusivity and Safeguarding

Supporting and Understanding Safeguarding


Health and Wellbeing

The One Dance UK Magazine | Autumn 2022 53 One Dance UK Resources
Optimisation Package (POP)
health, fitness and optimum performance
stories on
each week
Wellbeing Wednesdays Inspiring
dancer health and wellbeing
awareness of access barriers in dance spaces
Considering DifferenceMaking dance accessible Increasing
Health and Wellbeing Dance of the African Diaspora Children and Young People's Dance Join the conversation Join our active Facebook groups to share news and access the latest information:
of a collection of resources from Dance School Safeguarding Working Group
National Institute of Dance Medicine and Science:

Book Reviews

La Nijinska: Choreographer of the Modern

sector of her time. “One mustn’t sell one’s creativity” she said in her diaries.

La Nijinska is the first biography of the 20th century choreographer Bronislava Nijinska whose success was overshadowed in life by her brother Vaslav Nijinsky, the great dancer of Les Ballet Russes of Diaghilev. This fascinating, and very well researched, book by Lynn Garafola takes us into the adult life of a woman who not only was an incredible dancer, but also a daring choreographer and an avant-garde thinker who challenged the dance Review


Movement Direction

Movement Direction is both exciting and interesting, delving into the world of the movement director. Breaking down rehearsal processes, exploring the extensive history of theatre, as well as offering her own anecdotal experiences, Kate Flatt’s book is the ultimate toolkit for any aspiring movement director.

She had the privilege of working with some of the most accomplished contemporary artists of the 20th century: Aleksandra Exeter, Natalia Goncharova, Coco Chanel, Jean Cocteau and Igor Stravinsky among others. She worked frenetically for decades, from Kiev to Paris, Monte Carlo, Buenos Aires, New York and California, while being an exile of both World Wars.

Nijinska was a woman who fought for her art, never

show called Les Misérables after following a ‘hunch’. Her description of her experience of Les Misérables is beautifully written, with some exciting details about the process including sharing improvisation tasks that were used.

compromised, and confronted the traditional role of women in society. She experienced the misogyny of the dance sector of her time and at the same time managed to empower her female dancers on stage, introducing the neoclassical style, even before George Balanchine.

Lynn Garafola has managed to combine research, accuracy and enjoyable reading to bring back a magnificent artist who was unfairly swept aside by history. This book is also a must read for anyone interested in getting an insight into the dance ecology of the 20th century.

well rounded this book is, as it opens up to allow other successful movement directors to voice their experiences and journeys – all of which are different and engaging.

Purchase ISBN: 9780719840609

It opens with Flatt’s own fascinating journey as an established movement director. She shares her adventures through the creation of the original production of a small

Flatt carefully depicts everything involved in a production through the lens of a movement director. She allows her book to be very encouraging and proactive, sharing various tasks for the reader to try which are sensitive, experimental and adaptable. I appreciated how

Movement Direction is an excellent handbook for artists to explore new perspectives and you can expect to feel enlightened by the world of movement direction. Flatt ends the book in a creative way, leaving the reader with her final ten thoughts, my favourite being number 10: “Whatever the process, the results will live in the hearts and minds of the audience.”

One Dance UK Staff

Andrew Hurst MBE

Chief Executive

Cameron Ball Special Projects Manager

Rebecca Bertram Project Manager

Amelia Bickley

Membership and Business Development Officer

Dani Bower

Marketing and Communications Manager

Lara Coffey

Head of Marketing and Communications

Barny Darnell

Membership Manager

Tamar Dixon

Dance of the African Diaspora Network Officer

Alisha Kadri Head of Membership and Business Development

Sam Lane

Dance in Education Manager (Maternity Cover)

Jessica Lowe Administrator, Dancers’ Health, Wellbeing and Performance

Jo Gatenby Dance in Education Manager

Laura Nicholson

Head of Children and Young People’s Dance

Jazlyn Pinckney

Head of Workforce Development

Christopher Rodriguez

Deputy Chief Executive/ Finance Director

Erin Sanchez

Manager of Health, Wellbeing and Performance and the National Institute of Dance Medicine and Science

Chloe Sprackling Marketing and Design Officer

Katie Stevens Operations Manager

Alan Tuvey Finance Manager

Amy Williams

Dance in Education Manager

Board of Trustees

Amanda Skoog Chair

Anthony Bowne Principal, Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance

Jane Bonham Carter Baroness Bonham-Carter of Yarnbury, Member, House of Lords

Andrew Carrick Director of Carrickworks

Julian Flitter Partner, Goodman Jones LLP

Denise Nurse Legal Consultant

Susannah Simons

Arts Strategist and Director of Partnerships, Marquee TV

David Watson

Executive Director of Audiences & Media, National Museums Liverpool


Carlos Acosta CBE

Children and Young People Patron

Peter Badejo OBE

Arlene Phillips CBE

Sir Richard Alston Champion of U.Dance and Young Creatives

One Dance UK Dance Hub Thorp Street Birmingham B5 4TB

One Dance UK is a Company Limited by Guarantee.

Registered in England and Wales: No. 2931636

Registered Charity: No. 801552

Copyright One Dance UK

54 The One Dance UK Magazine | Autumn 2022 Features
by Avatâra Ayuso Review by Katie Smith
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