What is the Associate Artists programme and how does it work?

DanceEast works with a range of artists and dance companies across the UK and internationally. One of the ways we do this is through the DanceEast Associate Artists programme which is a bespoke way of working – individually tailoring packages to meet the needs of each person.

It is a long term investment responding to the need to provide specialist artist development plans that mutually benefit the intentions of both the artist and their practice, and the wider community of DanceEast and our audiences.

The purpose is to support individuals looking to develop their practice within the dance industry. The aim is to support sole artists or duos but is not a commission to create a singular piece of work.

The Application Process

We’ll be accepting applications by a short Google form, from Monday 17 January – until Friday 18th February 2022. In March, we’ll begin the selection process and invite approximately ten applicants to interview with a panel. If successful, you’ll be given the opportunity to pitch ideas of how you’ll use the time and resources provided by the programme. Finally, four Associate Artists will be selected to work with us and together we’ll create a plan for how to utilise the opportunity.

It’s important to note this isn’t the only way in which DanceEast supports and works with artists. If you want to know more then please sign up to one of our drop in sessions where you’ll be able to meet the team and ask questions. In addition, you can also join us for our online launch event to hear more from our team and former Associates.

Thursday 16 December 2021, 1pm – Drop in online session (Zoom)

Wednesday 12 January 2022, 6pm – Drop in online session  (Zoom)

January 2022 (date tbc) – Online Launch Event (Zoom)

Who can apply?

We are keen to hear from anyone creating dance and wanting to develop their practice. This opportunity is ideal for Choreographers or Community Dance Practitioners making performance work. We are particularly interested in hearing from women (including trans women) and non-binary people.

We are open to applicants who work in a range of styles which may include but are not limited to contemporary dance, hip hop, South and East Asian dance, ballet, tap, African Dance dance styles and or folk dance.

Applicants can be at any stage in their career but must have the right to work in the UK and be over the age of 18 years. We especially welcome applications from artists from black and ethnic minority groups, diverse backgrounds and those with disabilities. We are especially keen to hear from dance artists based in the East of England, or who want to create and share work in Ipswich.

If you want to check if you are eligible to apply – please take a look at our FAQs

How can I apply?

It’s easy – just complete our short Google Form and make sure you submit it by our closing deadline: Friday 18th February 2022.

We are also accepting video applications, please see our FAQs for full details.

We do recommend that before applying you attend one of our two drop in sessions so you can make sure this is the right opportunity for you and make the most out of your application.

Helpful tip: here is a downloadable PDF of all the questions in the Google Form if you want to draft your answers ahead of time.

What can Associate Artists expect if chosen?

If selected, you will work with DanceEast to develop your practice over a 3-year timeframe, from April 2022. You will be supported through a combination of resources and opportunities which are relevant to you. These can include but are not limited to resources such as a £6,000 bursary (per Associate Artist), studio space, use of and opportunities to present work in the Studio Theatre, to share research and receive feedback, an international residency and advice from the DanceEast team.

Associate Artists will be expected and encouraged to work and/or visit regularly onsite, to learn more about DanceEast and what we do, and to feedback with suggestions and thoughts.

You will have opportunities to take part in creative professional development workshops, attend key organisational meetings and expand your networks through our community.

Former DanceEast Associate Artists include: Tim Casson, James Cousins, Julie Cunningham, Kaia Goodenough, Tom Hobden and Kate Flurrie, Rosemary Lee, Joseph Toonga, Alexander Whitley and Anna Williams.

To read more about our previous Associate Artists and what exciting work they’ve gone on to make please click here.


We would like to thank those who helped us refine this offer and call out, special thanks to Gendered Intelligence, Joseph Toonga and Theresa Beattie and all the Artists who attended our Consultation Groups.

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