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Dances for Peace and Planet is a collaboration between Oxford dancers, singers and musicians with St Mary & St Nicholas Church Littlemore, programmed by the church’s Musician in Residence Malcolm Atkins. This diverse programme, reflecting concerns of the current times and responding to the church’s beautiful space, will include performances by Nuzhat Abbas, Susie Crow, Helen Edwards, Jenny Parrott, Andy Solway, Lizzy Spight, Ségolène Tarte and Tingting Burnham Yang, as well as MUE, (dancer Macarena Ortuzar and musician Bruno Guastalla).

Performance: Sunday 22nd May 6.00pm

Venue: St Mary & St Nicholas Church, Cowley Road, ​Littlemore, Oxford OX4 4PP

Tickets: Donations on the door

Find out more about the arts at St Mary & St Nicholas Church here

The development of some work in this programme has been supported through the Oxford Dance Forum programme Creative Labs. Find out about Oxford Dance Forum here

“Let me begin again.” Ocean Vuong

Dam Van Huynh draws upon the words of writers, poets, activists as an awakening to his displaced experience as a child refugee from the Vietnam war. Moving from a state of disorientation into a state of consciousness, Re:birth retraces a personal experience of rediscovery. The performance unravels a recollection of visual impressions and sensations, a memory book whose pictures and stories long forgotten begin to resurface, a distortion between memories and dreams. Movement responds to a field of light, sound and voice to illude the senses.

Supported using public funding by Arts Council England.

Dam Van Huynh was Winner of the Asian Arts Award for Best Directing 2018 for DEP:

“Throughout ĐẸP, I am on the edge of my seat.” – The Guardian

★★★★ – The Observer on DEP

“Van Huynh is in his own very stylised world, and has perfected the art of drawing an audience into it.” – CriticalDance Forum

“A powerful work with a terrible beauty all of its own.” ★★★★ Seeing Dance on DEP

Date: Wednesday 20th April, 7.30pm

Venue: Arts at the Old Fire Station, 40 George Street, Oxford OX1 2AQ

Tickets: Standard: £13 | Pay more: £15 | Pay less: £11 Book online here

Ages: 12 years +

Content warning: Please note, this work contains nudity.

Find out more about Van Huynh Company here

The final event in Dance Scholarship Oxford’s current series Interrogating the Dance ‘Classics’ is a discussion with Dr Arabella Stanger of her new book Dancing on Violent Ground: Utopia as Dispossession in Euro-American Theater Dance. This fascinating and thought-provoking event is free and open to all, but seats are limited due to COVID-19 restrictions, so advance booking is essential. It will also be live streamed, and available to watch after the event.

Date: Tuesday 19th April 5.30pm BST

Venue: Jacqueline du Pré Music Building, St Hilda’s College, Cowley Place, Oxford OX4 1DY

Booking: To register for this event please email Professor Sue Jones or Marcus Bell

Find out more about DANSOX here

Long established and highly respected Oxford dance makers Cecilia Macfarlane and Joëlle Pappas join together this spring to curate a three day festival of professional, adult community, and youth dance at the Old Fire Station under the title Life Line. The three shows, suitable for audiences of all ages, comprise:

Life Line

This evening of dance with live music is curated by Cecilia Macfarlane and Joëlle Pappas who relish the opportunity to share the passion and deep artistic values that they hold in common. Their careers as dancers, directors, teachers and mentors are rooted in the knowledge that Dance is the key to healthy living and our surviving on this planet.

“There is a vitality, a life force, a quickening that is translated through you into action, and because there is only one of you in all time, this expression is unique.  And if you block it, it will never exist through any other medium and be lost.  The world will not have it.  It is not your business to determine how good it is, nor how valuable it is, nor how it compares with other expressions.  It is your business to keep it yours clearly and directly, to keep the channel open.”  ― Martha Graham

Thursday 31st March 7.30pm

Venue: Arts at the Old Fire Station, 40 George Street, Oxford OX1 2QA

Book online here

Curious Dancing: DugOut Adult Community Dance

DugOut Community Dance Group present Curious Dancing, an evening of dance created and performed by its members and guests with direction from Cecilia Macfarlane. All the dancers celebrate how powerfully dance can release expression, feed the soul and entertain others. We celebrate difference; the excitement is not in uniformity but unique individuality that can powerfully change lives. Find out more about Dugout here.

Friday 1st April 7.30pm

Venue: Arts at the Old Fire Station, 40 George Street, Oxford OX1 2QA

Book online here

Ripples, Echoes…: Tac-au-Tac Youth Dance and guests

“Look out, now! We’re ready to jump!
Because the rhythm is jumpin’, jump session
Doo wadda doodoo wadda doodoo wat doo wah” ― Slim & Slam

Tac-au-Tac Youth Dance and Joëlle Pappas present two entertaining programmes of contemporary dance.

Ripples of the past, echoes of the present, dance carries us forward…

Saturday 2nd April 4.00pm

Venue: Arts at the Old Fire Station, 40 George Street, Oxford OX1 2QA

Book online here

Dancin’ Oxford‘s Spring Festival features exciting guest companies, local companies and newly commissioned work as well as a host of participatory activities such as workshops and discussions. Here follows a list of performances, with links to more information and booking details:

Moving With the Times, now in its 11th year, features three new works from exciting emerging companies, co-commissioned by Dancin’ Oxford and Pegasus Theatre. In Excessive Human Collective‘s piece Post Truth Whatever, three female performers create and broadcast propaganda in a fictional world which is eerily similar to our own. Night People Events present The Rave Girl; housed within a colourful visual landscape, the rave girl explores how hype, rave, and expression can collide, creating a complex, yet otherworldly persona that demands to be seen. In light of the horrific murders of Sarah Everard and Sabina Nessa, Phoebe Tompsett Dance work The Daily Male casts a stark light on the measures that women are forced to take every day simply to remain safe.

Date: Friday 4th & Saturday 5th March 7.30pm

Venue: Pegasus Theatre, Magdalen Road, Oxford OX4 1RE

Tickets: £13, concessions £10 Book online here

Recommended age: 12 years+

For the Festival Opening Oxford’s Westgate shopping centre will come to life with a series of short shows from national and local companies to make you think, smile and want to dance. Richard Chappell presents Infinite Ways Home – a multisensory production that explores ritual, rave and human connection. Unlock the Chains Collective depicts a community united in grief and anger as it remembers and mourns the lives of those lost at the hands of the state. This outdoor piece is commissioned by Dancin’ Oxford and supported by TORCH. Joli Vyann presents an innovative duet fusing circus, dance and theatre – blurring the boundaries of dance and circus skills. Also performing will be vibrant and talented youth dance troupes from across Oxford including Step2 Dance, Body Politic, TPD Young Artists and Mini Professionals. Join the Zumba party for fun and to learn some moves.

Date: Saturday 5th March 12.00-5.00pm

Location: Leiden Square, Westgate, Queen St, Oxford OX1 1TR

Free, and suitable for all ages

KHAOS & HYMNOS – Chhaya Collective

A double bill of two extraordinary dance pieces about women resisting oppression. In HYMNOS, inspired by the story of Iranian artist Saba Zavarei and her online platform Radio Khiaban,”even the most captured woman guards the place of the wildish self, for she knows intuitively that someday there will be a loophole, an aperture, a chance, and she will hightail it to escape.” In KHAOS live musicians join six contemporary dance artists to revel in the joy, tenderness and the power of wild women.

Date: Thursday 10th March 7.30pm

Venue: The Mill, Spiceball Park, Banbury OX16 5QE

Tickets: £16 Book online here

Recommended age: 13 years+

Body Politic – Them

Directed by Emma-Jane Greig and with choreography by L’atisse Rhoden, THEM flicks through the journal pages of three survivors of sexual violence, exploring the women’s struggles to navigate the trauma and its impact on their mental wellbeing, their loss of self, and finding healing. Inspired by American poet and novelist Kim Addonizio’s poem To The Woman Crying Uncontrollably In The Next Stall, this powerful and gripping display of hip-hop dance draws movement from the stark and vivid imagery of her words.

Date: Friday 11th March 7.30pm

Venue: The North Wall, South Parade, Oxford OX2 7JN

Tickets: £14 (concessions £12, under-25 £10) Book online here

Recommended age: 14 years+

Stay after the show for Talk About Dance, an opportunity to join Body Politic Artistic Director Emma-Jane Greig in conversation with independent dramaturg Miranda Laurence, share your thoughts, ask questions and join the discussion. 8.45-9.30pm, free.

Wriggle Dance Theatre – Squidge

Do you squish or squash, handshake or hug, stretch out or snuggle in like a bug? A truly magical and funny interactive dance show with live music and digital projection, taking a light-hearted look at our sense of touch and how it influences our everyday lives; at its heart a tale of  friendship and compromise. An immersive shared experience to delight children and their grown-ups alike.

Date: Saturday 12th March 11.00am and 2.00pm

Venue: The North Wall, South Parade, Oxford OX2 7JN

Tickets: £8 (concessions £6) Book online here

Running time: 50 minutes Suitable for ages 3-8 years

Watch the Squidge film and participate in a workshop at the Mill Banbury – find out more here

Richard Chappell DanceInfinite Way Home

Critically acclaimed choreographer Richard Chappell presents his most ambitious work to date, a multisensory production that explores ritual, rave and human connection. Using a diverse choreographic language of ballet, contemporary dance and improvisation, Infinite Ways Home looks to redefine our sense of community and home, in a mesmerising feast of colour and pulsating sound. Performed by an ensemble of extraordinary dancers, it features electronic music by award-winning experimental duo Larch, alongside live violin by acclaimed soloist Enyuan Khong.

Date: Monday 14th March 7.30pm

Venue: Oxford Playhouse, Beaumont Street, Oxford OX1 2LW

Tickets: £10 – £16.50 Book online here

Duration: 60 minutes Suitable for ages 7 years+

Stay after the show for Talk About Dance, with choreographer Richard Chappell and Miranda Laurence, to share your thoughts, ask questions and join the discussion. 8.45-9.30pm, free.

Botis Seva – BLKDOG

A beautifully brutal commentary on how the youth of today are coping in a world not built for them. Through emotionally charged Hip Hop dance, BLKDOG reveals how self-discovery leads to self-destruction. Through haunting childhood memories and adult life traumas, how do we fight through our vices to find a sense of peace? The music has grown from a long-standing collaboration with Torben Lars Sylvest and words performed by  Far From The Norm and guests. Tom Visser’s lighting brings a dark smog of disillusion, while hooded caps and padded costumes by Ryan Laight echo the protection and comfort of childhood. BLKDOG won an Olivier Award for Best New Dance Production in 2019 and in 2021, and has been was nominated for a Black British Theatre Award 2022 for Best Dance Production.

Date: Wednesday 16th & Thursday 17th March 7.30pm

Venue: Oxford Playhouse, Beaumont Street, Oxford OX1 2LW

Tickets: £10 – £26 Book online here

Suitable for ages 11 years+

Find a full programme of Festival activities including participatory workshops here

“Last Christmas, a new telescope was sent into space and is now wandering in the dark and mysterious galaxy – is this how we, as artists, feel when we go deep into our consciousness in search of what makes us feel alive?

What happens when five artistic units come together during a global pandemic and are given the time to think and reflect? Witnessing a rise in sickening racial attacks against the global majority, the endless closure of theatres and arts venues, and the widening gap between the “successful” artist and the “starving” artist, what would five live artists of different races and backgrounds do when they gather?

Bitter Moves, Sweet Truths: an evening of continuing is part of an ongoing collaboration between percussionist/multidisciplinary artist Angela Wai-Nok Hui, contemporary art duo Ghost and John, dance/maker/writer Shivaangee Agrawal, and independent dance artist Thomas Page. Together they look at what creative exchange and artist alliance means in a world where the arts are under threat, and how to project a healthier future in the post-pandemic world. This dynamic promenade piece will merge dance with soundscapes & projections, transporting you to a place of calm that strives to build connections through art.

The evening will be a chance to observe, question, challenge, share, reflect, dream, and exchange. So artists, art makers, art lovers, join us at the Old Fire Station Theatre in Oxford as we unpack this mess in the tidiest ways we can!

Date: Thursday 24th February 7.00pm

Venue: Arts at the Old Fire Station, 40 George Street, Oxford OX1 2AQ

Tickets: Standard: £13 | Pay more: £15 | Pay less: £11 Book online here

Duration: 2.5 hours

Ages: 14+

Spindrift is a special early evening event in the cafe of the Old Fire Station combining free improvisation by musicians of Oxford Improvisers and dance with special guest Helen Edwards.

Helen Edwards is an Oxford based dancer, artist and arts psychotherapist. She has studied Butoh and Amerta Movement in Indonesia, Japan, Europe and the UK. Helen will perform a solo piece of her own devising (Finding Stone) and also dance in duo with fellow Oxford-based dancer Lizzy Spight.

The evening will present a new piece for improvising musicians and dancers devised by Lawrence Casserley, a larger group piece by Paul Medley, and a piece by Bruno Guastalla using maqam techniques, for loutar and sinewaves.

Programme:

Siròc for loutar with sine waves performed by Bruno Guastalla

Finding Stone solo dance by Helen Edwards with musical accompaniment by Martin Hackett, Philipp Wachsmann, Paul Medley

HIPPO devised by Lawrence Casserley. Dancers: Helen Edwards and Lizzy Spight. Musicians: Lisa Reim, Chris Stubbs, Pete Watson. The five greatest threats to biodiversity can be summarized by the “HIPPO” acronym: (1) Habitat loss, (2) Invasives, (3) Pollution, (4) Population, and (5) Overexploitation. The score consists of five graphic images, which are drawn from some of the most endangered environments on earth: grasslands, oceans, broadleaf forest, arctic regions, Aral Sea.

Spindrift devised by Paul Medley for solo players and small groups

Squall, a text piece devised by Mark Browne for improvisers, that considers some of the many and diverse aspects of large bodies of water.

Performers:

Dancers: Helen Edwards, Lizzy Spight
Musicians: Andrew West, Chris Stubbs, Bruno Guastalla, Lisa Reim, Martin Hackett, Lawrence Casserley, Chris Dammers, Mark Browne, Pete Watson, Philipp Wachsmann, Dan Goren, Lizzy Spight, Paul Medley.

Date: Tuesday 22nd February 6.30pm

Venue: Old Fire Station Cafe, 40 George Street, Oxford OX1 2AQ

Tickets: on the door.

Find out more about Helen Edwards here

Find out more about Oxford Improvisers here

Find out about Lizzy Spight here

DANSOX (Dance Scholarship Oxford) enters 2022 with a fascinating thematic programme of events over the Hilary (Spring) term. Interrogating the Dance ‘Classics’ began with a sparkling occasion on 25th January bringing together Dame Monica Mason (former principal dancer and Artistic Director of the Royal Ballet) with Jane Pritchard, Dance Archivist at the Victoria and Albert Museum. They talked about The Sleeping Princess and The Sleeping Beauty in the centenary year of the first performances of Diaghilev’s legendary production of The Sleeping Princess in London, bringing the history of this seminal Petipa work and its influence on ballet in Britain up to the present day. Forthcoming events include:

Monday 7th February 1.00-2.30 GMT online

Marcus Bell (St Hilda’s, Oxford) and Marie-Louise Crawley (Coventry) – Listening to Grace: Embodying Hidden Pasts, Imagining Just Futures. This joint presentation and discussion forms part of the ongoing DANSOX/TORCH series Dance as Grace: Paradoxes and Possibilities

Wednesday 2nd March 5.30-7.00pm GMT in person at the Jacqueline du Pre Music Building, St Hilda’s College, Cowley Place, Oxford OX4 1DY

Alastair Macaulay, international writer and critic – Swan Lake

Attend in person or watch the live stream here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4uoVO76hjZc

Tuesday 19th April 5.30-7.00pm BST in person at the Jacqueline du Pre Music Building

Arabella Stanger (Sussex) – Dancing on Violent Ground: Utopia as Dispossession in Euro-American Theater Dance

For online joining links and enquiries please contact susan.jones@ell.ox.ac.uk and marcus.bell@st-hildas.ox.ac.uk.

Unless otherwise stated all DANSOX events are free and open to all; if held in person the event will be followed by refreshments.

All future in-person events may be moved online subject to COVID19 precautions.

Find out about DANSOX here and watch videos of past events here

Oxford Dance Forum are delighted finally to be back at Arts at the Old Fire Station to share an evening of new dance works in progress by ODF members, and invite feedback, comments and discussion with the audience.

Pragna Das – Bhoboghure

Moving ahead- sometimes it happens that we get stuck in a situation or a thing. This piece describes that feeling and the urge to move ahead, and how that process happens. The dilemma of being comfortable with people around, and when you are forced to move ahead without them as they were gone in the delinquent.

Susie Crow – Technical studies project

Over the course of the pandemic and under the limitations of lockdown I have been creating miniature dances arising from balletic technical challenges, that could be practised and performed at home. Western classical musicians have long written and published technical studies, making them available to all who wish to try playing them. I hope to make my dance studies similarly publicly available online, and am investigating appropriate formats and platforms for doing this.

Dancers: Ségolène Tarte, Evie Tucker and Thomas Page

Helen Edwards – Finding Stone

We are of the earth
Exploring a dialogue with stones found by the sea
Carrying these stones with me
My body feeling their weight, density, atmosphere and stories,
I am slowed by them,
Anchored in presence
The dance emerges from the body in the liminal spaces between the memories of stone and water
A residue of this ancient knowledge
The strata of life and layers of time

Date: Wednesday 9th February 7.30pm

Venue: Arts at the Old Fire Station, 40 George Street, Oxford OX1 2AQ

Tickets: £5 on the door or book online here

Oxford Dance Forum would like to thank Arts at the Old Fire Station and all their team for supporting this event.

Find out more about Oxford Dance Forum via the website here and on Facebook here

DANSOX (Dance Scholarship Oxford) and TORCH (The Oxford Centre for Research in the Humanities) join forces to present Yorke Dance Project in a moving tribute to Sir Robert Cohan, as an extension to The Grace Project, continuing the discussion “Dance as Grace: Paradoxes and Possibilities”. Director Yolande Yorke-Edgell will present Cohan’s ideas on grace. On 28th October dancers from the Company will show excerpts from Cohan’s works Canciones del alma and Communion, followed by discussion. On 29th October Yolande Yorke-Edgell will dance, and there will be a special screening of Cohan’s lockdown project – Lockdown Portraits – the last series of solos he created – followed by a discussion with the director of the film.

Dates: Thursday 28th October 4.00-6.00pm, Friday 29th October 4.00-6.00pm

Venue: Jacqueline du Pré Music Building, St Hilda’s College, Oxford OX4 1DY

Tickets: Admission free, but numbers limited for social distancing: book to reserve a seat by emailing susan.jones@ell.ox.ac.uk
and copying in marcus.bell@st-hildas.ox.ac.uk

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