News: National Youth Dance Company announces new cohort

Tuesday 11 December 2018

NYDC dancers (c) Manuel Vason

The country’s flagship company for young dancers, National Youth Dance Company (NYDC), has selected its seventh intake of members from 26 towns, cities and villages across England. The new cohort joins Guest Artistic Director Botis Seva to work on a new piece specially created for NYDC titled MADHEAD, which will tour the UK in 2019.

18 performance workshops took place across the country during the summer to select 28 new members for the 2018-19 intake. Consisting of 19 female and nine male dancers aged 15 – 24, the new members join the ten dancers returning from last year to form a company of 38.

Under the direction of Guest Artistic Director, Botis Seva, the company – which is run by Sadler’s Wells – premieres MADHEAD at Dance East in Ipswich on Saturday 20 April 2019, followed by a UK tour to be announced. The new commission fuses contemporary dance, physical theatre and hip hop.

Botis Seva’s appointment follows his recent highly acclaimed piece, BLKDOG, which formed part of the Sadler’s Wells’ 20th anniversary commission, Reckonings, in October 2018. He takes over from last year’s Guest Artistic Director and Sadler’s Wells Associate Artist Sharon Eyal whose production with NYDC, Used To Be Blonde, premiered at Sadler’s Wells and toured last year.

During their time with the company, NYDC dancers are offered a unique insight into the dance profession, living and working closely together as a company, alongside NYDC staff and the artistic team. The year-long experience in the company provides members with the necessary skills and techniques to find career opportunities and raise aspirations, self-esteem and confidence.

The dancers are mentored during four intensive residencies in school holidays to create and rehearse a new piece. Entering its seventh year, NYDC has, since its inception, established a reputation for producing high-quality productions by leading choreographers, Sharon Eyal (2017-18), Damien Jalet (2016-17), Michael Keegan-Dolan (2015-16), Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui (2014-15), Akram Khan (2013-14) and Jasmin Vardimon (2012-13).

NYDC has a track record of putting young people on paths to successful dance careers, with over 80% of all former NYDC dancers now either in further dance studies, in vocational training or working professionally. Graduates from NYDC have gone on to dance in Michael Keegan-Dolan’s Teac Damsa, Hofesh II, BalletBoyz, Matthew Bourne’s New Adventures, Cullberg Ballet, Ultima Vez, Russell Maliphant Company, Rambert2 and the Jasmin Vardimon Company.

The 28 new dancers for NYDC 2018-2019 are:

Selako Jade Ackuaku, Berkshire (17)
Harvey Burke–Hamilton, Epsom (17)
Kendra Chiagoro–Noel, Ealing (18)
Erin Dallas, East Grinstead (17)
Sekou Diaby, Brixton (17)
Karim Dime, Hampstead (23)
Maia Faulker, Brighton (16)
Sarah Golden, Horfield (17)
Mark Halton, Ambleside (16)
Orla Hardie, Bath (17)
Connor Humphreys, Thatcham (17)
Ethan Hurip, Brighton (16)
Kit Ibbott, Great Bington (18)
Hannah Joseph, Stratford (16)
Ewelina Kosinka, Ashford (18)
Florence Lennon, Brighton (17)
Amelia Long, Nunhead (17)
Sandra Maduoma, Kelvedon (17)
Faye McLoughlin, Montpellier (17)
Mathilde Mellor, Lewes (16)
Harriet Musgrove, Exmouth (18)
Zara Philips, Greasby (17)
Ned Ratcliffe, Helston (17)
Anna Smith, Lingfield (18)
Millie Smith-Hashim, Saltdean (16)
Mollie Stebbing, Erith (18)
Harry Wilson, Intake (17)
Grace Young, Hull (18)

This new intake joins the ten returning NYDC dancers:

Gemma Baker, Wantage (17)
James Cooper, Blackpool (17)
Daisy Dancer, Hexham (17)
Lola Evans, Brighton (17)
James Hall, Cambridge (17)
Samara Langham, Nunhead (18)
Eleanor Roberts, Dartmouth (17)
Esme Tothill, Brighton (16)
Paul Davidson, West Dulwich (21)
Beth Gardiner, Wollaton (24)

What’s On