Dance to beat the winter blues at the Winter Dance Gathering

Tuesday 1 December 2009


Winter Dance GatheringA Winter Dance Gathering invites everyone interested in choreography to join them for a weekend of celebration packed full of performances, workshops, debates and work-in-progress showings from Friday 4 December to Sunday 6 December at University College Falmouth's Dartington Campus.

Dedicated to being a platform for debate and fresh, innovative performance, The Winter Dance Gathering brings together Choreography alumnae with current students and staff in a lively and festive atmosphere.  The public is invited to join the celebration and see acclaimed performances as well as new works and works-in-progress, and to take part in open workshops, improvisation jams and conversations.  The gathering brings together the best of University College Falmouth's (UCF) choreographers and performers to celebrate the question, ‘Where are we at?'

2.	From Left to Right: Level 2 BA(Hons) Choreography students, Minou Polleros, Bella Shirley Miller and Sheri Burt. Image by Chris Nash.The weekend begins on Friday 4 December in Aller Park with Milling and Mulling, a dazzling evening full of actions, enthusiasms, surprise performances, join-in improvisation jams and debate amidst mulled wine and delicious food.  Performances by current BA and MA students will animate the studios, hallways and surrounding sites of Aller Park at Dartington Campus.   Starting at 6.30pm, the studio complex will be alive with performances and discussions, as well as an installation studio dedicated to dance on film, and an open (join-in) multi-media improvisation jam, punctuated by students' choreographic work.  Milling and Mulling will continue until 10pm.

Saturday 5 and Sunday 6 December begin with workshops by choreography alumnae in yoga, release technique, choreographing via the internet and performing with Body, Place and Object, whilst the afternoons and evenings offer a rich programme of work-in-progress showings and performances of dance with live music, theatre, digital technologies and site-based work.

A social space and café featuring hot chai, real ales and Ock's homemade curries will be open from 1pm where participants can discuss works and debate the future of choreography in the dance world of today. A programme of five discussion rounds links the events and performances and encourages critical and thoughtful engagement throughout the weekend.

1.	Winter Warmer by BA(Hons) Choreography Lecturer, Malaika Sarco-Thomas. Image by Chris Nash.Contributors to the inaugural Winter Dance Gathering include some of the field's acclaimed artists and its freshest rising stars performing exciting new works, from the Drowning Girl Collective to Ellen Kilsgaard & Chris Crickmay. The weekend will include a first round of three commissions of new work by former Choreography students Marina de Quay, Kate Ashman, Runa Kaiser Larsen, and Alison Grace Clissold.  These artists were selected for commissions following a call for new work as part of the first annual Winter Dance Gathering initiative.

A performance of Black Mirror, by London-based Butoh artist, Marie-Gabrielle Rotie on the evening of Sunday 6 December, will also bring another layer to the event.  This is the only ticketed event on the Winter Dance Gathering programme and bookings for Black Mirror can be made through the Arts at Dartington.

"We are very excited to be hosting the first Winter Dance Gathering," said Susanne Thomas, Field Director of Choreography.  "We hope it will become a regular feature in the dance calendar and a platform for public performance and debate about choreography. It is a great opportunity for anyone interested in choreography to join us and get involved either by dancing, taking part in workshop or joining the debates."

The Winter Dance Gathering begins on Friday 4 December from 6.30pm to 10pm and continues on Saturday 5 and Sunday 6 December from 11am to 10pm at Aller Park Studios on the Dartington Campus, Totnes. All events and performances are free and open to the public.

For further information about BA(Hons) Choreography and MA Choreography at University College Falmouth, visit www.falmouth.ac.uk.choreographyma or www.falmouth.ac.uk//choreographyma, email admissions@dartington.ac.uk or telephone Admissions on 01803 862224.

University College Falmouth is the only independent Higher Education institution in Cornwall with the powers to award degrees in its own name.  It has two campuses in Cornwall - at Woodlane in Falmouth and Tremough in Penryn (which it owns, and jointly manages with the University of Exeter) - and a third campus at Totnes in Devon, following its merger with Dartington College of Arts in 2008.

This merger created a new institution focusing on the expansion of Falmouth's expertise in Art, Design and Media and Dartington's expertise in Choreography, Music, Theatre, Art and Writing.  The Devon-based courses will relocate to a new, high-specification Performance Centre at Tremough in 2010, paving the way for a new specialist Arts University in Cornwall by 2012/2013 that will be unique to the South West.

The College is a founding partner in the Combined Universities in Cornwall (CUC), a unique initiative to promote regional economic regeneration through Higher Education, funded mainly by the European Union (Objective One), the South West Regional Development Agency, and the Higher Education Funding Council for England, with support from Cornwall Council.

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For further information about University College Falmouth, please contact Jilly Easterby MCIPR, Head of Public Affairs, Telephone: 01326 213792, or email:  jilly.easterby@falmouth.ac.uk