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Press Release: Sadler's Wells announces new series =dance, featuring work created and performed by deaf and disabled artists

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A new Sadler’s Wells series

Lilian Baylis Studio, Sadler’s Wells
From Tuesday 13 May 2014
Performance and workshop times vary (full details below)

Tickets: Prices vary (full details below)
Ticket Office 0844 412 4300 or www.sadlerswells.com
Minicom Number: 020 7863 8015 


“This renowned theatre, specialising in dance, offers a bewildering array of facilities and a visit here can be an inspirational experience, if only to see what is achievable.”  The Rough Guide to Accessible Britain


Next month, Sadler’s Wells presents the start of =dance, a new series featuring some of the most exciting and innovative work created and performed by deaf and disabled artists. Presenting work by both established and emerging inclusive dance companies, =dance also includes a programme of workshops, discussions and professional development opportunities alongside each performance. The series runs from May 2014 - March 2015 in the biggest presentation of inclusive dance ever programmed by the theatre. Tickets on sale from 10am on Tuesday 15 April 2014.


The first company to present work in =dance is Stopgap Dance Company. Made up of disabled and non-disabled dancers, Stopgap performs the London premiere of its latest work Artificial Things, following a critically acclaimed UK tour, on Tuesday 13 and Wednesday 14 May 2014.


Artificial Things sees a group of individuals who are slowly suffocating in each other’s company. They seek escape through riotous rock-n-roll, but their wild disorder descends into playground politics to reveal some uncomfortable truths. Artificial Things is choreographed by Lucy Bennett, one of UK’s leading experts in integrated choreography and devised and danced by a cast including David Toole.

Stopgap Dance Company runs its Responsive dance practice and integrated choreography workshop on Wednesday 14 May 2014 from 11am - 5.45pm. This day long intensive workshop aimed at professional dancers and teachers offers a chance to experience, reflect and discuss creative dance for mixed ability groups.


On Sunday 28 September 2014 DMD+ (Deaf Men Dancing+) presents Hear! Hear! Founded by deaf choreographer Mark Smith, DMD+ is made up of professional dancers who are deaf and incorporates a range of dance forms and sign language to create a unique choreographic practice.


Hear! Hear! explores personal and intimate ideas about being deaf, expressed through DMD+ company members personal experiences. Accessible to all, Hear! Hear! aims to captivate audiences and change people’s perception of deaf dance. Usually featuring an all male line-up, for this performance DMD+ are joined by new group of female performers.


DMD+’s workshop Creative Deaf Dance on Sunday 28 September 2014 from 2pm - 3.30pm teaches young deaf adults DMD+’s unique choreographic style, led by the company’s founder Mark Smith along with DMD+ dancers Joseph Fletcher and Kevin Jewell.


The UK’s leading contemporary dance company made up of disabled and non-disabled dancers, Candoco Dance Company, presents two events in =dance, Curious Encounters and Close Encounters on Sunday 16 and Monday 17 November 2014 respectively.


Curious Encounters is an interactive performance, tailored to young people, that gives an insight into Candoco’s work. Featuring Two for C by award-winning choreographer Javier de Frutos and an extract from Thomas Hauert’s Notturnino, Curious Encounters offers younger audiences the opportunity to ask questions and find out more about inclusive contemporary dance. There is a practical contemporary dance post-show workshop that further explores themes from the performance, led by members of Candoco Dance Company.


Close Encounters presents an extract of a new work created for Candoco by Sadler’s Wells New Wave Associate Hetain Patel and Two for C by Javier de Frutos. The performance event includes conversations with Frutos and Patel. Ticket holders are invited to observe a free pre-show company rehearsal.


On Thursday 11 December 2014 =dance presents a mixed bill, =dance Statement Pieces, featuring new and restaged work from leading artists in the sector. The mixed bill is followed by a post-show discussion with the artists on creativity and developing a distinctive movement language and style. Full programme details to be announced shortly.


Contemporary dance company Magpie Dance presents Flying High on Friday 16 January 2015. Magpie Dance unlocks individual potential and ability through performance, workshops and training programmes.


Celebrating its 30th anniversary year at the forefront of dance for people with learning disabilities, Magpie Dance will work with one of Sadler’s Wells’ Associate Artists to create a specially commissioned new piece of work. Full programme details to be announced shortly.


From 3.45pm - 5.45pm on Friday 16 January 2015, Magpie Dance holds a workshop aimed at aspiring dancers with learning disabilities aged 18 – 30. The workshop includes a contemporary class and advice on auditions, apprenticeships and careers in dance.


Jane Hackett, Co-Director of Creative Learning at Sadler’s Wells says “Some of the most interesting dance work being made today is created and performed by deaf and disabled artists. Sadler’s Wells has previously had a relationship with some of these artists, through commissioning or programming work, but this is the first time the work has been presented all together, highlighting the profile and impact that these artists have within the dance sector.


Besides the diversity of performances offered, the accompanying programme of workshops and discussions provide inspiration and knowledge to emerging performers and an opportunity for audiences and performers to interact.”


Alistair Spalding CBE, Artistic Director and Chief Executive of Sadler’s Wells says “Sadler’s Wells has a history dating back to Lilian Baylis herself, of making dance as accessible as possible. Aside from the capabilities of our current building, the theatre has long challenged perceptions around who can and should dance through the extensive work of our Creative Learning programme, however this new series marks a significant development in our focus on inclusive dance. The level of quality and innovation that is currently produced by deaf and disabled artists deserves a proper platform and focus, so it is absolutely right that we are providing it, and I’m delighted to be doing so.”



Listings information:


Stopgap Dance Company
Artificial Things
Tuesday 13 & Wednesday 14 May 2014
Performances at 7.45pm
Tickets: £12 (£6 conc)
Workshop on Wednesday 14 May from 11am - 5.45pm; Tickets: £20; suitable for professional dancers and teachers


Hear! Hear!
Sunday 28 September 2014
Performance at 5pm
Tickets: £12 (£6 conc)
BSL interpreted post show talk
Workshop on Sunday 28 September from 2pm - 3.30pm; Tickets £4; suitable for young deaf people aged 12 - 25


Candoco Dance Company
Curious Encounters
Sunday 16 November 2014
Performance at 3pm
Tickets: £6
Workshop on Sunday 16 November from 4.30pm – 6pm; Tickets £10 (including ticket for the performance); suitable for disabled and non-disabled dancers aged 13+
BSL Interpreted


Candoco Dance Company
Close Encounters
Monday 17 November 2014
Performance at 7pm
Tickets: £12 (£6 conc)
Free pre-show dress rehearsal and discussion for ticket holders
BSL Interpreted


=dance Statement Pieces
Thursday 11 December 2014
Performance at 7.45pm
Tickets: £12 (£6 conc)
Free BSL interpreted post-show discussion for ticket holders


Magpie Dance
Flying High
Friday 16 January 2015
Performance at 7.15pm
Tickets: £12 (£6 conc)
Workshop on Friday 16 January from 3.45pm - 5.45pm; tickets £4 suitable for aspiring dancers with learning disabilities aged 18 - 30


Lilian Baylis Studio, Sadler’s Wells
Ticket Office 0844 412 4300 or www.sadlerswells.com
Minicom number: 020 7863 8015 


Notes to Editors:

The inaugural =dance series continues with further productions, workshops, debates and discussions until March 2015, with further details to be announced shortly.


About Sadler’s Wells Access Scheme
Sadler’s Wells runs an Access for All Register for people with physical, sensory or cognitive disabilities. Patrons can apply to the scheme, which enables them to use our new online disabled booking service and free access to the theatre car park.  They may also be entitled to concessionary tickets if they are in receipt of disability-related state benefits. The scheme entitles a reduction in the cost of their ticket and a companions ticket, limited to one per production and a reduced booking fee.

For more information on the Access Scheme and to apply please visit the Sadler’s Wells website: http://www.sadlerswells.com/page/access-scheme


About Sadler’s Wells
Sadler's Wells is a world leader in contemporary dance, committed to producing, commissioning and presenting new works and to bringing the very best international and UK dance to London audiences. Under the Artistic Directorship of Alistair Spalding the theatre’s acclaimed year-round programme spans dance of every kind, from contemporary to flamenco, bollywood to ballet, salsa to street dance and tango to tap. Since 2005 it has helped to bring over 80 new dance works to the stage and its international award-winning commissions and collaborative productions regularly tour the world, including Sutra, zero degrees, and PUSH.


Sadler’s Wells also provides a home to 16 world class Associate Artists and 3 Resident Companies including Sylvie Guillem, Akram Khan, Hofesh Shechter, Crystal Pite, Wayne McGregor | Random Dance, Matthew Bourne’s New Adventures and ZooNation. The theatre also supports and nurtures the next generation of talent through its National Youth Dance Company, Summer University programme, Wild Card initiative and its New Wave Associates.


Located in Islington in north London, the current theatre is the sixth to have stood on the site since it was first built by 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 all having started at Sadler’s Wells.

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