LondonDance - Latest Articleshttp://londondance.comLatest news and articles from LondonDanceThu, 29 Jun 2017 10:43:17 +0100Thu, 01 Jan 1970 01:00:00 +0100Alexander Whitley - 8 Minutes - Sadler's Wells/articles/reviews/alexander-whitley-8-minutes-sadlers-wells//articles/reviews/alexander-whitley-8-minutes-sadlers-wells/Reviewed 27 June 2017

In Whitely’s 8 minutes we are transported from the Sun to the Earth in an hour, uncovering the forces of the universe at work.

The piece has been two years in the making, with Whitely working in partnership with scientists from the UK’s STFC RAL Space, drawing inspiration from the images and data of solar science research.

The performance opens with a recorded science lecture, settling our brains in for the complex theories ahead. The dancers then appear, dressed in tight, shiny garb, a mixture of heights and shapes, moving against a stunning digitally backdrop that throughout the piece pulses and throbs with light and solar images, bringing the intensity of space to the stage.

Against this vivid setting, created by visual artist Tal Rosner, the dancers move like a murmuration across the stage. Weightless with flowing limbs, it’s a striking mix of unity and individualism that starts us on the journey from bumping atoms to human life.

From there we are transported from space to the stars – the dancers becoming ever independent and more organic – and finally to the ground with a mix of hypnotic group work and some impressive solos. The journey is driven by an intensely satisfying and immersive electronic soundscape by Daniel Wohl who captures the scale and otherness of the cosmos so well.

When we reach Earth, life is speeded-up, offering a vision of humanity through a microscope, ending with a pas-de-deux set against real life, close-up footage of the blazing sun.

Not unlike watching the film Interstella the concepts of space throughout the night felt both tangible and consuming but also often cold, distant and complex.

8 Minutes is at Sadler’s Wells till the 28 Jun.

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ReviewsThu, 01 Jan 1970 01:00:00 +0100
Alain Platel discusses the challenges of grappling with Mahler/articles/interviews/in-depth-read-alain-platel-discusses-the-challenge//articles/interviews/in-depth-read-alain-platel-discusses-the-challenge/Tejas Rawal talks to Alain Platel, director of the trailblazing Les Ballet C de la B, about his new production, Nicht Schlafen.

Inspired by the compositions and life of Gustav Mahler and the troubled early 20th century Europe in which he worked, Nicht Schlafen explores a pertinently contemporary sense of a world in flux. Platel discusses the challenges of grappling with the eclectic compositions of Mahler, his open and collaborative rehearsal process and his admiration of the Godmother of European contemporary dance, Pina Bausch.

Alain, what drew you to Mahler as a point of departure?

‘Well I wasn’t to be honest. It was one of those suggestions made by the theatre and opera director, Gerard Mortier. He pushed me along the way to listen to music other than Bach; he introduced me to Mozart which I used in Wolf (2003), Verdi and Wagner which turned into C(h)oeurs (2012) and then he said, ‘now it’s time to listen to Mahler,’ and that was really a challenge because it wasn’t really the sort of music I was interested in.’

‘Mortier died in 2014 and this question was staying in my mind. I was thinking, why not try to understand Mahler’s music, listen to it more carefully? At the time, I was well surrounded by people like Stephen Prengels, who I’ve worked with for a long time now and who is an absolute Mahler fan, Stephen was very patient with me and so this helped. I also started to read about Mahler and the period he lived in and this became a very interesting subject.’

You’ve previously mused on the ‘very contemporary sense of confusion’, in Mahler’s compositions, how did this challenge affect your rehearsal process?

‘When I listened carefully to the music of Mahler, it felt that he was some sort of a sampler, he was bringing in different kinds of music and that was what bothered me when I listened to the symphonies, it was very eclectic. In Mahler’s music there were many influences that you could hear and it would jump from one atmosphere to another and it was while working on that, that I realised, that in fact I’m doing something similar in my work for a long time. There’s not a dramaturgical linear line in my work, I’m jumping from one atmosphere to another, so in fact I realised that we are very similar.’

Your collaborator, Stephen Prengels, has noted that, like Mahler, you seek out suffering in your work.

‘(laughs) In some ways I resemble Mahler, he was someone who thought he was carrying all the suffering of the world. I was very surprised when Stephen told me and we laughed a lot about that but I think I’m another character. When I read about Mahler I discovered a very angry and disappointed man and this, I am not.’

What prompted your use of African chants, cowbells and the sounds of sleeping animals as a counterpoint to Mahler’s compositions?

‘Normally we start in a way in which everything is allowed to enter the studio and sometimes you can be surprised by the things that are suggested. In this case I absolutely wanted to invite two performers, Boule Mpanya and Russell Tshiebua, who I worked with on Coup Fatal (2015), which was a project with Congolese musicians who interpreted European Baroque music. I wanted to invite them to this European contemporary performance and see if they could nourish us and we could nourish them.

‘I felt like it could be possible to bring in the sound of some Pygmy songs in the performance and they would counterbalance very well with some of the adagios in the music of Mahler. It was with risk and I wasn’t sure and only by working together during the whole process that we discovered that there was indeed something that would not contradict the music of Mahler since he was this composer that tried to bring in the outside world into his music. In Mahler’s time it was mainly the whole atmosphere in Europe, I thought we could broaden it out and bring in African influences.’

*Your use of African influences strikes me as bearing affinities with the eclectic musical influences of Pina Bausch in productions such as Masurca Fogo. Indeed as Bausch’s work exists in the shadow of the violence of the Second World War, Nicht Schlafen exists in the shadow of Mahler’s tumultuous 20th century Europe. Can our audiences expect a Bauschian production?

*Well I feel a child of Bausch. All the contemporary creators of dance, theatre and even the visual arts have been influenced by her and me certainly. Not only because I’m a great admirer of her work but we also met and you know it’s something I will never deny. I could hear from some people that consider Nicht Schlafen as my personal Rite of Spring so in that sense I do recognise this. When I work I’m sure all this has influenced my way of looking at things but it’s not something I’m conscious about.’

Alain Platel and Les Ballets C de la B will bring their eclectic Nicht Schlafen to Sadler’s Wells on Friday the 30th of June for two nights.

Tejas Rawal is a Theatre Studies student currently based at Brunel University London with particular interests in intercultural performance and postmodern theory. You can find him on Twitter @TejRawal

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InterviewsThu, 01 Jan 1970 01:00:00 +0100
In Pictures: Bell Square, Hounslow's outdoor arts space /articles/features/in-pictures-bell-square-hounslows-outdoor-arts-spa//articles/features/in-pictures-bell-square-hounslows-outdoor-arts-spa/Past and future dance performances at Bell Square London.

AKADEMI
Music, speech and spectacular combine in a show inspired by Dante’s Divine Comedy and Hindu mythology on Saturday 01 July.

BILBOBASSO
Tango and fire from the Argentine company that launched Bell Square back in 2014.

LANCE MOI EN L’AIR
Joli Vyann & L’Eolienne brings a show about the sensitivity and connection between two people, in a moving dance performance on Saturday 05 July.

SOUTHPAW DANCE
An exhilarating performance of dance and fire.

CANDOCO
Danced with passion and sensitivity to a collection of pop songs, Joel and Laura offer audiences a potent and emotive exploration of how we fall in and out of love over and over again, often with the same person.

COMPANY CHAMELEON: OF MAN AND BEAST
Exploring masculinity and friendship with a stunning dance performance.

Watermans’ director, Jan Lennox says, ‘Bell Square brings top quality UK and international dance to an area with low arts engagement. Dance in particular can be seen as inaccessible by this audience, yet we regularly see audiences of a thousand and over taking real joy in this artform with artists including the likes of HURyCAN, Southpaw, Company Chameleon, Cie Bilbobasso and Roger Bernat.’

Photography credits:

Amor by J M Coubart
You and I Know by Camilla Greenwell
Akademi by Simon Richardson
Company chameleon by Brian Slater
Joli Vyann by MovingProductions
Southpaw by Vipul Sangoi

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FeaturesThu, 01 Jan 1970 01:00:00 +0100
Your weekly London dance guide /articles/features/your-weekly-london-dance-guide-4//articles/features/your-weekly-london-dance-guide-4/Monday

Grab a chance to try some Slovak folk dance with Morena Dance Company. A fun Monday night of ‘warm-up, stretching, learning Slovak steps and little routines’. All levels welcome.

Tuesday

Head over to Sadler’s Wells to watch six ‘highly skilled dance artists and renowned choreographers’ ‘six very individual and personal solos’ as part of Elixir Festival, celebrating life long creativity.

Wednesday

Kick your mid-week off right with some early morning Yoga with Ella Tighe. ‘Flow through a sequence of energising postures to find the precision and detail in the postures. Suitable for all levels, with ‘plenty of modifications offered and the chance to work at a pace which suits you.’

Thursday

Check out some ‘compelling flamenco for today’ in a thought provoking flamenco and contemporary mash-up ‘featuring experimentalists Noemí Luz and Rosanna Terracciano.’

Friday

Sneak out of work early and celebrate the start of the weekend with an Experimental Hip-Hop class with Tarik Frimpong at Studio 68.

Saturday

Immerse yourself in Art Night 2017. Head to Exchange Square, Moorgate to see dancers stream into the square from across east London. Stay for the free dance classes and all night silent disco.

Sunday

Recover from the night before at the Greenwich Swing Dance Picnic. ‘Swing to summer breezes and an eight-piece dance orchestra in the beautiful historic park. Free event.

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FeaturesThu, 01 Jan 1970 01:00:00 +0100
In-depth read: Melanie Manchot brings all night dancing to Exchange Square /articles/interviews/longer-read-melanie-manchot//articles/interviews/longer-read-melanie-manchot/This Saturday 01 July, Exchange Square in Broadgate will come alive with dancers from across east London, as part of Melanie Manchot’s new commission Dance (All Night, London) showcasing styles from Cuban Rueda to 80s funk and Argentine Tango. Between 10pm – 1am, the square will be taken over by teachers from each school, offering different dance lessons to the public. When the lessons are over the space becomes an open dance floor until the early hours of the morning, with playlists and headphones available via silent disco.

We speak to Melanie Manchot’s about creating work for public spaces and how dancing with strangers can be ‘a powerful act’.

Why did you want to be part of Art Night 2017?

The concepts for Art Night 2017 speak to many of the core ideas I am pursuing in my practice as a visual artist and Art Night 2017’s curator Fatos Ustek is one of the most exciting curators to work with. Her way of programming and curating is innovative and imaginative, her choices are both precise and creative. Fatos’s concepts for this year’s Art Night deal with important socio-political questions, there is an urgency to her ideas yet the way she approaches them is non-didactic, she allows works to speak with lightness.

When Fatos asked me to be part of her programme of commissions I was delighted to be able to make a new work in this context. Presenting art works outside of the usual parameters of the art institutions opens out meaning and potentially reaches new viewers. My work has a strong performative and participatory focus, it forms a continuous enquiry into the dynamics of individual and collective identities. There is a strong dialogic and relational approach to how I conceive work, hence presenting the work in new contexts is a great opportunity to expand its vocabulary.

Art Night is allowing me to be ambitious with ideas that are part of some earlier works: my projects often propose constructed events or situations in public spaces and form explorations into our human condition, forming a dialogue on ways of being and belonging. The works operate on the threshold of choreography and observation, of documentary modes and staged scenarios or performances – working with an economy of gestures to articulate relations orchestrated by and around the camera.

Dance (All Night, London) is both an action, a live event as well as the production of a new video work. I am interested in the blurring of the spaces of participation and of observation, the possibility to difuse the boundaries between performers and audiences. In Exchange Square, where the piece takes place, arguably every one is a participant, we are all performing together.

Dancers parade through the street in Melanie Manchot's Dance (All Night, London) 2017

Why did you chose to work with dance/movement for this piece?

Dance has featured in a number of previous works of mine, I have a strong and sustained interest in dance as one of the most profound expressions of our cultures and our histories. It connects us deeply to ourselves, to our subjectivity yet also to forms of collectivity and intersubjectivity. Different forms of dance are all different languages, they have their own vocabulary, grammar and syntax. Each stands for its own specific history, its provenance, its connections to rituals.

Working with ten different dance schools, each representing a specific form of movement and all located within the East End, is speaking to the broad diversity of cultures present with the East End and by extension in London. We are in danger of loosing some of the richness of this hugely diverse demographic, in part due to the divisive politics of this current moment.

Dancing with strangers in public, temporarily reclaiming spaces that are highly regulated and codified is a powerful act. It is suggesting that we can produce moments of exchange and togetherness, it aims to recognize our entangled relationship with the world and with each other.

The exploration of public spaces has seemed to be a recurring theme in your work – is there something particularly appealing about bringing art into public spaces? Why are you drawn to creating work in these spaces?

My whole practice is characterized by a research-led approach to devising individual projects that respond to specific locations, situations and communities.
An exploration of public space and our relationships with different types of environments is one key parameter of all my work. What we think of as ‘public’ space a lot of the time is in fact private, owned and authored. I am interested in playing with the codes of these spaces, provoking a recognition of how public space is highly regulated and how this affects our behaviour within it.

In looking into ideas of personhood the very questions of the locational aspect of identity is significant. Our relationship to the environments we live in is constituent of who we are. I strongly believe that there are continuous reciprocal relationships between people and their socio political context.
Dancing in public reclaims space for an activity that is at once celebratory and potentially disruptive. Think of carnival: it is joyous yet always carries within it the seed of protest. Dance (All Night, London) consciously explores that dialectic.

How will you be utilising the whole of Exchange Square in your work?

The dancers will stream into and across Exchange Square at the end of their processions through the streets of East London and we will use all of the six entrances into the square – this opening moment will activate the entire square and then pull in into the central focus of the work, the temporary dance floor we are setting up for the night.

Viewers and participants are encouraged to get headphones from the silent disco sound system as these will allow them to tune into the three different channels of music that will run in the square for the entire night, from the moment the dancers arrive and the dance lessons start. So whether you decide to learn a new dance and join one of the ten free lessons or whether you want to observe and listen and flick between the three channels to tune into each lesson – the headphones connect you to all the other people who are listening to the same channel.

From 9.30pm to 4am the square will be a continuous celebration of dance in many of its varieties. As the entire event is running on silent disco headphones the square might actually be relatively quiet and I anticipate that this will create a very unusual atmosphere. The silent disco system fulfills an important conceptual function as it highlights each visitor’s responsibility for their specific experience. If you watch the event without headphones your perception will be completely different to observing it with headphone By tuning into one particular music you connect with others on that same channel, your rhythm will align or be more in tune with people listening to the same tracks.

If I turn up ready for the start of the dance classes, what will I learn? How will it differ from a studio class?

It will differ in many direct and more subtle ways, beginning with the external framework for the work, in which the dance classes take place: the classes are all conducted on silent disco headphones and the dance floor will be divided into three sections with a rolling schedule of dance lessons so at any one point there are three dance lessons happening side by side. For example, if you are deciding to learn Tango, you will have other people learning Reggaeton and 80’s flashmob choreographies on either side of you.

The setting for the project is pretty amazing, you are looking into the back of Liverpool train station and have the panorama of the City surrounding you. Dancing with a large group of total stranger can be a very empowering and connecting experience. As mentioned above, my work has a sustained interest in collective experiences, particularly when they take us outside of our own expectations, beyond groups of people we already are in connectivity with.
The silent disco accentuates this, it connects and isolates at the same time. You are sonically connected to all the people on the same channel with you and your body is activated by the same beats yet there are always people right next to you who are on one of two other forms of music and their experience of their physicality, their connection to rhythm is potentially totally different. .

A lot of your work in the past has focused on the body and how it changes over time. Do you see dance as something that people can get involved with at any stage of their life?

Absolutely! I think it is so important to keep dancing into your old age, I am always delighted when I see older people dance. Look at the Green Candle Dance Company, who are part of the work – their dancers are up to 86 years old – they are inspiring and beautiful!

Can you tell us more about how Dance (All Night, London) will live on after the night itself?

The work will become a video installation that will be exhibited in museums and galleries for years to come. We are absolutely delighted that the work has been acquired by the Art Fund and will join the Arts Council Collection as soon as it is complete. This will give the work a great legacy as the Arts Council Collection is such a strong national collection, preserving the work and making sure it gets seen in good exhibitions around the country.

Art Night with Phillips takes place across east London on 1 July

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InterviewsThu, 01 Jan 1970 01:00:00 +0100
Video: What can we learn from older dancers?/articles/news/what-can-we-learn-from-older-dancers//articles/news/what-can-we-learn-from-older-dancers/NewsThu, 01 Jan 1970 01:00:00 +0100Dance picks for summer in London/articles/features/london-summer-dance-picks//articles/features/london-summer-dance-picks/Looking for something a little bit different? Dance photographer and writer Carole Edrich lists her top dance picks from across the capital this summer.

TAKE PART

Dance For Refuge | Friday 23 June
Free | V&A
Hit the dance floor as three migrant DJs perform sets inspired by the V&A’s collection.

Art Night | Saturday 01 July
Free | Exchange Square, Liverpool Street
Join the dance processions of different dance schools to Exchange Square, which will be transformed into a temporary stage with free dance lessons. When lessons finish, the space will then become an open dance floor until 4am.

Tango At Spitalfields | Sunday 02 July
Free | Spitafields Market
A monthly free outdoor milonga offering Londoners a rare opportunity to tango outdoors. The dance floor is covered by a canopy so the dancing can continue through any summer showers.

RainCrew Summer | Jam 15 – 16 July
Free – £20 | Red Lion, Leytonstow
Now in its third year, Rain Summer Jam brings people together to compete and witness some of the most exciting Hip Hop and Urban dancers around.

Werk The Floor | Sunday 16 July
£12 | Cargo, Old Street
An all-day waacking one-on-one, featuring a showcase, contest and after party.

WATCH

A/her/my/our/their/no flamenco | Thursday 29 June
£8 | Cervantes Theatre, Southwark
A thought provoking flamenco and contemporary mash-up.

Nicht schlafen | Friday 30 June
£20 | Sadler’s Wells
See the trailblazing Alain Platel return with his critically acclaimed contemporary ensemble les ballets C de la B, for the dark and moving nicht schlafen. Inspired by the music of Gustav Mahler and the time the composer lived in, drawing parallels between the music and the troubled early years of the 20th century in Europe.

Remnants | until Saturday 01 July
£20 – £28 | Print Room at the Coronet, Notting Hill
Performed by solo dancer and fourn singer, Remnants juxtaposes Balkan folk and Klapa (traditional a cappella singing from Croatia) to tell a story of tragic love, set against the backdrop of two wars in Bosnia 50 years apart.

Turmoil, Claw Festival | 3 – 4 July
£8 – £16 | Cervantes Theatre, Southwark
A physical tragicomedy featuring live music, Flamenco and a tap dancing goat!

The OV Battle | Saturday 8 July
£10 | Studio Three Arts, Barking
Join the Odd Venture’s first battle event with categories including seven to smoke Hip Hop, seven to smoke krump and two vs. two all style.

Afro Play – Colour Vs Place | Sunday 16 July
Free | Southbank Centre
Five artists share how Africanism and related dance forms have become part of their identity. A provocative performance designed to spark conversation and develop an alternative understanding of why we connect with African culture.

Flamencura | 8 – 12 August
£12 – £40 | Sadler’s Wells
The master of flamenco Paco Peña returns with an electrifying showcase of flamenco talent, featuring three dancers and six musicians.

Hoochie Koochie | July/August
Free | Barbican
Step into the dreamlike world of Trajal Harrell and uncover a series of imaginative encounters. Harrell’s performances are carefully crafted blends of fact and fiction in which he skilfully mixes the conceptual with the whimsical in an inventive, playful and sassy way.

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FeaturesThu, 01 Jan 1970 01:00:00 +0100
60-seconds with... Monica Duck, Company of Elders/articles/news/60-seconds-with-monica-duck-company-of-elders//articles/news/60-seconds-with-monica-duck-company-of-elders/Monica Duck is a member of Company of Elders , the Sadler’s Wells over-60s performance company, which has been proving since 1989 that it’s never too late to start dancing.

Company of Elders will be performing as part of Elixir festival this weekend. We speak to Monica about learning choreography and taking to the stage as an older dancer.

I started dancing a year ago. I am fitter, have more energy and have learned about group dancing.

I will be performing at Elixir Festival as part of Company of Elders. The piece is called here created by Shobana Jeyasingh. It’s a combination of stories drawn from the group participants that were adapted during rehearsals.

When I first started learning choreography I found it difficult to remember. Now I feel freer to dance and move.

My rituals to keep my body moving start at home I run up and down the stairs with music and I wear a FitBit, with an aim to do 10,000 steps a day.

My top three tips for someone looking to start dancing as an older adult is to remember you’re never to old to start dancing, to have fun and watch dance classes on YouTube to gain confidence.

Elixir festival runs from the 23 to the 27 June at Sadler’s Wells.

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NewsThu, 01 Jan 1970 01:00:00 +0100
Sisters Grimm is back with Voices of the Amazon/articles/interviews/voices-of-amazon//articles/interviews/voices-of-amazon/Following on from the Grammy® Award nominated success of INALA, Sisters Grimm is back with a colourful, upbeat dance musical with an important message about the environment and the Amazon rainforest. We speak to choreographer Helen Pickett about bringing the colour and energy of the Amazon to life through movement.

Voices of the Amazon is set deep in the jungle, where a water spirit from the Amazon river, who ventures deep into the rainforest in search of a cure for her dying sister. Entranced by the beauty of the natural world, her eyes are soon opened to the realities of deforestation.

It was this message of unity and caring for the earth that really spoke to Helen Pickett, who collaborated with Sisters Grimm team Pietra Mello-Pittman and Ella Spira to choreograph the new work.

“It’s very timely. With the President of the United States leaving the Paris Agreement. It truly is this story of the Amazon which is this amazing, fertile piece of earth that is the foundation for so many medicines and so much diversity of life within the animal kingdom and flora and fauna and humans. That’s what I love about the story, how things work the best when they work together.”

Helen has created over 30 ballets and is currently Resident Choreographer for Atlanta Ballet. Voices of Amazon, is a development on her style offering a chance for her to work with an established narrative.

“I made a ballet based on Camino Real by Tennessee Williams three years ago and really loved that process. I could always go back to the truth, that the narrative could not be changed. It’s strange, with all my improve background, I actually liked that boundary.”

“Voices of the Amazon has that wonderful strong foundation of narrative. It’s such a beautiful anchor” Helen enthuses.

The performance features a mix of duets and large group performances. The group dances were a chance for Helen to try something new. “I really went that way which was really fun” she laughs adding she really enjoyed creating movement where ‘everyone is united’.

Despite a lot of her former work being abstract narrative has often been a base for Helen’s work, “Even if my pieces are abstract, I always create story… I’m really about how people break the fourth wall in order to connect and communicate.”

This theme of connection and communication runs throughout Voices of Amazon, which fuses ballet, contemporary and capoeira styles together to create a fun and energetic performance, celebrating the spirit of Brazil.

Narrated by Jeremey Irons, the show is also supported by WWF and the Eden Project. WWF have provided scientific consultation as has Alexander (Xand) Van Tulleken.

Alexander explains, “The themes in Voices of the Amazon are based on indigenous stories but the danger the sister’s face is a danger we all face as the rainforest is increasingly threatened by human activity. Indigenous life and knowledge is important, fragile, under threat, and undervalued. Voices of the Amazon is a powerful reminder of this”

Helen agrees, “It’s another reason I love this story. It can be an educational tool.”

Any key moments to look out for? Helen laughs, “The song Gaia is my jam. It’s one of the first pieces I choreographed because I was so attached to it as I saw movement. I am bit kinaesthetic, so if I see the music in shapes, then I know I’ll be attached to it.’

Voices of the Amazon is at Sadler’s Wells from 4-8 July and then at Latitude Festival on the 15 July.

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InterviewsThu, 01 Jan 1970 01:00:00 +0100
Botis Seva to create special commission for V&A Reveal festival/articles/news/botis-seva-to-create-special-commission-for-the-op//articles/news/botis-seva-to-create-special-commission-for-the-op/Award-winning choreographer Botis Seva, known for his experimental and theatrical take on hip hop, will create a special commission for the opening of the V&A Exhibition Road Quarter with alumni from the National Youth Dance Company.

The week-long, free festival will also include floating Aerocene sculptures, Ron Arad and Zandra Rhodes ‘drawing with light’ on V&A façades and a new dance commission from Julie Cunningham.

The festival will mark the opening of new spaces, bringing together a host of cultural commissions to explore the heritage, modernity and technology of the V&A.

REVEAL Festival 30 June – 7 July 2017

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NewsThu, 01 Jan 1970 01:00:00 +0100
The Ballad of the Apathetic Son and his Narcissistic Mother/articles/interviews/the-ballad-of-the-apathetic-son-and-his-narcissist//articles/interviews/the-ballad-of-the-apathetic-son-and-his-narcissist/We speak to 14 year old Raedie about dancing with his mum Lucy in The Ballad of the Apathetic Son and his Narcissistic Mother ‘a heart-stopping, hilarious piece of dance, movement and spoken word inspired by their joint love of the singer Sia’.

How did you first get into dancing?

I really enjoy movement and using my body to create performance. Apparently I’ve always expressed myself through movement and dance and when I was little would cry when I had to leave the dance floor.

How did The Ballad of the Apathetic Son and his Narcissistic Mother first came about?

My mum made me LOL, she wanted to find a way for us to work and get on better. I enjoy performing and making shows too. I’m very interested in pursuing this when I leave school.

Was it fun to create? How did you work together?

It had its moments. It was good. I was less excited about the rehearsal process but love performing the work. It’s really great collaborating with the other artists involved in it too and I know it’s cool. I feel most expressive in front of an audience.

How does it feel to be on stage performing with your mum (Lucy Gaizely)?

It’s totally different from what you would imagine. She is an artist so is comfortable with it but it took me a while. I’ve worked with her and my dad before but when I was little so it’s different. We argue sometimes even when we are performing, I guess you can only do that with your mum. I love it but wouldn’t tell my pals!

Do you have a favourite part of the show?

The final choreography is seven minutes and I do it alone and I love it. It’s a repeat motif of the opening choreography.

What’s next for you?

I will finish my exams next year and then focus my own arts practice. I’m part of a young people’s collective called Junction 25 and enjoy working in that way. I’m also interested in creative marketing and business studies. Making music, writing and singing is another passion.

The Ballad of the Apathetic Son and his Narcissistic Mother is at The Place as part of a double bill presented by 21CC on Wednesday 21 June.

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InterviewsThu, 01 Jan 1970 01:00:00 +0100
10 classes for older dancers in London/articles/features/10-classes-for-older-dancers-in-london//articles/features/10-classes-for-older-dancers-in-london/1. Green Candle Senior Dance Company – Bethnal Green

A regular class that works towards performances. Open to men and women over 60, no experience necessary, everyone welcome. Find out more

2. Senior Swans Ballet – Buckhurst Hill

Taught by professional ballerina Shardae-Rose Angel (Royal Ballet / Central School of Ballet Hons) Senior Swans Ballet is a friendly, social class for anyone over the age of 50, regardless of your level of dance experience. Find out more

3. Funky Disco – Islington

A funky Disco class with Simona Scotto who specialises in dance education and performance for over 55’s. Find out more.

4. Boundless – Greenwich

This creative dance group meets once a week at the Laban Building in Deptford. The class combines gentle contemporary dance technique with creative dance to improve strength and flexibility, with a chance to work with others to create your own movement. Find out more

5. Leap of Faith – Stratford

Leap of Faith is an open dance class for older people. They meet weekly at Stratford Circus and over the years have worked with a range of top choreographers. Find out more

6. Royal Academy of dance – south west London

From ballet and tap to chair based dance and classic ballroom, these free classes cover a multitude of styles for all capabilities. Find out more.

7. Mercury Movers – Southwark

Run by Rambert Dance Company, this class focuses on gentle movement and provides a great way to stay flexible. Find out more.

8. BollyFusion Seniors – Walthamstow

This dance and music project uses gentle Bollywood and Bhangra movement to develop co-ordination and raise energy levels.Find out more.

9. Older Men Moving – Bethnal Green

Bengali and Somali Men’s Group classes. Open to men over 50, no experience necessary, everyone welcome! Find out more.

10. Ballroom Dance – Westminster

A mixed abilities Ballroom class with great music for over 60s. Open to all, whatever your experience. Find out more.

See work celebrating lifelong creativity and the contribution of older artists this week as part of Elixir Festival at Sadler’s Wells.

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FeaturesThu, 01 Jan 1970 01:00:00 +0100