Alexander Whitley Dance Company has been in residency with Year 5 students from The Oaks Primary School in Ipswich this week. Combining artistic and scientific concepts through movement, two dancers from Alexander Whitley Dance Company, Victoria Roberts and Hannah Ekholm, alongside solar scientist Alessandra Giunta are working with the students to explore the company’s latest work, 8 minutes.
8 Minutes was created with input by space scientists from Science and Technology Facilities Council’s (STFC) Rutherford Appleton Laboratory (RAL). With a specially created score by the electroacoustic music innovator Daniel Wohl, and an installation of high definition imagery from award winning visual artist Tal Rosner, 8 minutes creates a striking, immersive environment of dance, music and film. Following the sell-out performance at the Jerwood DanceHouse on 10th November, the company have returned to Ipswich to bring science to life with 60 local pupils.
The Oaks Primary School Headteacher, Jeremy Pentreath reflects on the past week:
“Children’s ideas have been valued at every stage, leading to exciting and effective performance concepts which have developed through the week. The children have been delighted to meet the challenge of representing facts about individual planets through dance and movement.”
Alexander Whitley, former Associate Artist of DanceEast, has worked with scientists from STFC RAL to draw inspiration from the images and data of solar science research. Through this work, this esteemed British choreographer has explored the spectacular forces at work in the universe, working to further illuminate our relationship with the star that gives us life. Pupils have been using these concepts in their dance lab throughout the week.