Thanks to a generous legacy gift from David Andren and individual donations DanceEast launched the choreographic award scheme in 2015 with a major award of £5,000 and five awards of £1,000. Five additional awards of £1,000 will be awarded in 2017 and the application process will be announced very shortly.
The Choreographic Award can be used for research and development, or as a contribution towards making a dance work. The aim of the award is to nurture and develop choreographic talent and offers space, time and resources. A finished product is not necessary but there is an expectation that the funds will make a difference to the practice of the choreographer.
Following an open call for submissions in the spring, over 60 applications were received from UK based choreographers, working across all genres and contexts, all of whom considered worthy of support. The 2015 Choreographic Development Award winners were:
Award of £5,000 Joseph Toonga
Joseph is the artistic director of Just Us Dance Theatre and is interested in combining the rawness, compactness and precision of Hip Hop with contemporary choreography to explore the concept of depression. The award will help him broaden his understanding of different mediums and contextualise his work through further research.
Award of £1,000 Tim Casson
Tim creates work for non-dance audiences by connecting people, telling their stories and celebrating the everyday to create accessible and joyful experiences.
Award of £1,000 Sophie Nüzel
Sophie is interested in creating dance works for young people that are challenging and inspirational, creating something that will raise questions and put the world into a different perspective.
Award of £1,000 Wayne Parsons
Wayne’s work is inspired by themes of human experience, non-linear narration, text and the correlation between movement and meaning. This award will provide financial support and guidance for developing a new work.
Award of £1,000 Alesandra Seutin
Alesandra’s choreographic work combines physical theatre, dance, innovative scenography, live music and text to comment on political and social issues such as race, social inclusion and gender.
Award of £1,000 Didy Veldman
Didy trained at the Scapino Academy in Amsterdam and is now an established choreographer. She used the award to develop material for a new production to be created in 2016.
DanceEast is the home of dance in the East of England. It started life as Suffolk Dance over 30 years ago and moved in 2009 into a new building, the Jerwood DanceHouse, one of a small number of purpose built dance houses in the UK. Its mission is to simultaneously engage the public and provide a stimulating environment for artists to make work.
A key priority for the organisation is to develop and nurture best practice in dance. In addition to presenting a year-long programme of performances from some of the world’s greatest dance artists, DanceEast has developed an extensive programme of classes, workshops and pioneering projects. One of these ground-breaking initiatives is the internationally acclaimed Rural Retreat programme that has been created to nurture and develop artistic leadership in dance.
At the heart of the organisation is a commitment to supporting the professional development of artists and in particular the development of choreographic practice. DanceEast provides rehearsal space, residencies and commissions to a range of artists working across the scales. It has recently refreshed its Associate Artists Programme and the current cohort is James Cousins, Tom Hobden & Kate Flurrie, Rosemary Lee, Alexander Whitley and Anna Williams.
The Choreographic Development Award is the latest addition to DanceEast’s offer. Launched in 2015, at the world premiere of James Cousins’ Without Stars.
Gary Avis, Humphrey Burton CBE, Lizzie Fargher, Peter Manning and Jeanette Siddall CBE