Yorkshire youth dance companies present DANCE WHISPERS: in association with Sadler’s Wells and National Youth Dance Company

In March 2015, Yorkshire Dance announced its partnership with Wayne Sables Project and National Youth Dance Company (Sadler’s Wells) to present Dance Whispers, which brings together nine youth dance groups from across Yorkshire.

After the four month long project, the nine youth companies involved will come together on Sunday 12 July at the Stanley and Audrey Burton Theatre in Leeds to perform alongside National Youth Dance Company.

The nine groups involved in the project are Hull Dance Youth Company, Doncaster Youth Dance Company, DAZL Boys Company (Leeds), ReBuzz (Rotherham Boys), Dance United Yorkshire Performance Company (Bradford), Curve Dance (Easingwold), Northern School of Contemporary Dance Youth Dance Company (Leeds), Street Beat Elite (Doncaster) and Lyn Wilson and Heather Shepherdson School of Dance (Hedon).

Each group has nominated a young choreographer, aged between 14 and 19, who has been mentored by Artistic Director and internationally renowned dancer Joss Arnott (Joss Arnott Dance) to choreograph their piece for the performance. As well as this, each young choreographer has been given the opportunity to visit Sadler’s Wells and experience the work and rehearsal process of National Youth Dance Company. The visits culminated with a chance to see the premier of Frame[d], National Youth Dance Company’s latest work, which has influenced each group’s choreography.

Over the four months, the groups have also taken part in regional exchanges, which has meant the young choreographers have had a chance to share their ideas, receive feedback from their peers and take inspiration from each other’s work. Each group involved in the project has a very distinctive dance style and these exchanges are a chance for each of the young choreographers, and their fellow dancers, to experience and access the skills and knowledge of other dance groups in the region.

Gemma Whitham, Youth & Community Projects Assistant at Yorkshire Dance says “The young choreographers are really enjoying the project. We’ve had two amazing trips to Sadler’s Wells and the National Youth Dance Company and to date, five successful regional exchanges between the groups. The dancers are having a great time working with Artistic Director Joss Arnott on developing their pieces and meeting other youth dance groups from across the region to share their skills and ideas. We are all really looking forward to the performance in July!”

The aim of the project has been to nurture young choreographers, provide professional development for dance leaders, and create stronger connections between dance companies in Yorkshire. The final performance on 12 July, along with the prestigious opportunity to perform with National Youth Dance Company, must be the perfect way to end what seems to have been a fantastic experience for all involved.