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Press Release: National Youth Dance Company presents World Premiere of Used To Be Blonde at Sadler's Wells in April

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National Youth Dance Company / Sharon Eyal
Used To Be Blonde
World Premiere (followed by UK National Tour)
Saturday 7 April at 7.30pm  
Tickets: £12 (£6 concessions)
Ticket Office: 020 7863 8000 or 

National Youth Dance Company (NYDC), the country’s flagship organisation for young dancers which is run by Sadler’s Wells, will present the World Premiere of Used To Be Blonde at Sadler’s Wells on Saturday 7 April ahead of a UK National Tour in June and July. The new work is created under the guidance of 2017/18 Guest Artistic Director Sharon Eyal, who has recently been announced as a new Sadler’s Wells Associate Artist.


This new commission will contain Eyal’s signature style, conveying extreme emotions through movement. Used To Be Blonde has music composed by Ori Lichtik, lighting design by Alon Cohen and costume design by Maayan Goldman. The 41 young dancers in NYDC are mentored during four intensive residencies over the year, in order to create, rehearse and develop the new piece. They come from across England and are hugely diverse in terms of dance style and dance experience. Throughout the dancers’ time with NYDC they are given a unique insight into the dance profession, gaining skills and techniques that open up career possibilities.

One of the most exciting female choreographers working today, Sharon Eyal was born in Jerusalem and danced with Batsheva Dance Company from 1990 until 2008. She served as Associate Artistic Director of the company from 2003-4 and House Choreographer of the company from 2005-12. In 2013, Eyal launched L-E-V with her long-time collaborator Gai Behar. L-E-V presented the UK Premiere of OCD LOVE at Sadler’s Wells in 2016 and Love Chapter 2 performs at the venue in July 2018. L-E-V has toured across the world, visiting cities including New York, Paris and Amsterdam. Ballet British Columbia will perform Eyal’s piece Bill at Sadler’s Wells and on a UK Tour in March this year. Her other choreographies include Killer Pig and Corps de Walk for Carte Blanche Dance of Norway, Too Beaucoup for Hubbard Street Dance Chicago, Plafona for Tanzcompagnie Oldenburg, Germany, Sara and Salt Womb for Nederlands Dans Theater, Half-Life for the Royal Swedish Ballet and 
Untitled Black for the Göteborg Opera. In addition to her work with NYDC, Eyal’s Killer Pig will be performed in the UK this autumn by Rambert2, the new ensemble from Rambert for the next generation of dance artists.

Now in its sixth year, NYDC has established a reputation for innovative, challenging and influential work, producing open-minded, curious and brave dancers. The company brings together the brightest talent from across England, immersing the members fully in the process of creating, performing and touring new work, giving them a unique insight into the dance profession. 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.

NYDC is jointly funded by Arts Council England and the Department for Education through Grant in Aid funds

A Sadler’s Wells 20th Anniversary commission

Sharon Eyal is a Sadler’s Wells Associate Artist


National Youth Dance Company / Sharon Eyal
Used To Be Blonde
Sadler’s Wells, EC1R 4TN
Wednesday 7 April at 7.30pm 
Tickets: £12 (£6 concessions)
Ticket Office: 020 7863 8000 or 

2017 UK National Tour dates:
Sunday 24 June: Riley Theatre, Leeds
Saturday 30 June: Dance City, Newcastle
Sunday 8 July: The Curve, Leicester
Saturday 14 July: Latitude Festival
Wednesday 18 July: AMATA, Falmouth
Friday 20 July: Brighton Dome Concert Hall


Founded in 2012, and hosted at Sadler’s Wells, NYDC is an exciting young company that creates and performs innovative and influential dance, drawing together some of the brightest young talent from across the country. NYDC is jointly funded by Arts Council England and the Department for Education through Grant in Aid funds. Since NYDC’s inception in 2012:

- 180 dancers have joined the company, working intensively with renowned dance artists including Guest Artistic Directors: Jasmin Vardimon (2012-13), Akram Khan (2013-14), Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui (2014-15), Michael Keegan Dolan (2015-16), Damien Jalet (2016-17) and Sharon Eyal (2017-18). These 180 dancers come from over 80 different towns and cities in England.

- Over 2500 young people have worked with the company

- NYDC has delivered 107 workshops in 34 different venues across 24 towns and cities

- Over 35,000 people have seen the company perform

- NYDC has featured in 58 performances, visiting 22 different venues across the UK, including some leading theatres in the country.

Sadler’s Wells is a world-leading creative organisation dedicated to dance in all its forms. With over three centuries of theatrical heritage and a year-round programme of performances and learning activities, its goal is to motivate everyone to experience dance – to take part, learn, experiment and be inspired. Audiences of over half a million come to Sadler’s Wells’ London theatres each year, with many more enjoying its touring productions at partner venues across the UK and around the world, or accessing its content through digital channels.

Sadler’s Wells commissions and presents more new dance work than any other theatre in the world, embracing the popular and the unknown. Since 2005, it has helped to bring over 140 new dance works to the stage, many of them involving its 16 Associate Artists, three Resident Companies and four Associate Companies – the most exciting talents working in dance today. It also nurtures the next generation of talent through its artist development initiatives, and reaches over 25,000 annually through its learning and engagement programmes.

Located in Islington, north London, the current theatre is the sixth to have stood on the site since it was first built by entrepreneur Richard Sadler in 1683. The venue has played an illustrious role in the history of theatre ever since with The Royal Ballet, Birmingham Royal Ballet and English National Opera having all started at Sadler’s Wells. Sadler’s Wells is a charity and a National Portfolio Organisation, currently receiving 10% of its revenue from Arts Council England.

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