The Times dance critic Donald Hutera’s 4-day festival of contemporary dance concludes with an eclectic array of diverse and dynamic performances. The final evening showcases some of the highlights from previous nights of the four-day festival, yet also introduces new works for the audience to experience for the first time in this central Oxford venue.

The show on the mainstage of the Old Fire Station is preluded by informal installation Remember to Remember choreographed by Mara Vivas. As the audience enter the intimate space, they are encouraged by a written sign to “touch, watch, listen, write.” These instructions are somewhat ambiguous, yet the dancers’ (Vivas herself accompanied by My Johansson) perform with an openness that invites spectators to participate. (more…)

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Women GOlive is a showcase of dance by female performers – and men are welcome too!  Kicking off next Wednesday, 13 July, the mini-festival hosted by Arts at the Old Fire Station features some of the best talent around.  Curator and Times dance critic Donald Hutera has assembled a four-day line-up of short works for intimate spaces, cherry-picking four enticingly varied evenings of multi-generational talent from the UK and abroad, mainly but not exclusively the work of a group of fascinating and independent female artists. Local performers Ana Barbour, Susie Crow, Cecilia Macfarlane, Anuradha Chaturvedi, Jane Connelly, Anja Meinhardt and Roosa Leimu-Brown are joined by national and international names such as Jemima Foxtrot and Mara Vivas.   Performances will be refreshingly unconventional and always eclectic: expect the unexpected!

Performances:  Wednesday 13th – Saturday 16th July 7.30pm

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

Tickets:  £10/£8 from www.ticketsoxford.com or 01865 305305.

Programme:

Wed 13th:  Ana Barbour, Jane Connelly (Smidgen Dance Company), Lorna V, Richard Chappell, Susan Kempster, and Jemima Foxtrot

Thurs 14th: Lorna V, Ana Barbour, Arunima Kumar, Susie Crow (Avid for Ovid), Salah El-Brogy, Sarah Kent (Dysfunctional Dance), and Hanna Wroblewski

Fri 15th:  Lorna V, Susie Crow, Sarah Kent, Mara Vivas with My Johansson,  Anuradha Chaturvedi Seth, and Sue Lewis (Ffin Dance)

Sat 16th: Lorna V, Mara Vivas with My Johansson, Sarah Kent, Sue Lewis (Ffin Dance), Anja Meinhardt (Justice in Motion) with Roosa Leimu-Brown

More programme information here: www.oldfirestation.org.uk | 01865 263980

 

 

On each Scratch Night at the Old Fire Station, local and regional theatre performers, comedians or dance artists perform works in progress for audiences to watch and give feedback on.  This month, DANCE SCRATCH takes place, supported by the wonderful organisation, Oxford Dance Forum (ODF) on Tuesday 21st July.  Dancers get a chance to try out works-in-progress in a safe space; for audiences it is an opportunity to see new dance work and give feedback.  Artists presenting on this occasion are Butoh group Cafe Reason, Paulette Mae, Anuradha Chaturvedi & Meena Anand, and Roosa Leimu-Brown & Anja Meinhardt.
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I arrived late to find myself in the middle of Selfies x4 by Marina Collard Company. On stage were 4 young female dancers Lorea Burge, Alice Labant, Mathilde Lepage Bagatta and Carolina Ravaioli – dressed in jeans and a pairing of blues and reddish tops. Sometimes they stood and gazed vacantly, other times they preened, sat, walked, jumped or danced; some lovely consecutive moves, responses, stopping and starting between the pairs. Behind them, ‘selfie shots’ – pictures of faces – built up in a mosaic of squares over the back screen and disappeared again to reappear in another configuration. The soundtrack a hubbub of background noise: talking, sometimes in English, sometimes in a foreign language, a lot of giggling and awkward noises, the clattering, clanking sounds of a canteen. The whole aptly expressing the isolating (alienating?) contentment and self absorption of selfie culture.  At the end we were treated to the two pairs becoming a four and posing for each other and us; a connection warmly appreciated by the audience. This work was a collaboration between Marina, Paul Whitty (sound/music) and Vicki Rucinska ( film/projection). (more…)

The inaugural performance at the Pegasus of Anja Meinhardt’s physical theatre company, Justice in Motion, in collaboration with Oxfordshire Community Against Trafficking (OXCAT) takes a bold first step with Bound. With the intention of “building a bridge between social justice campaigns and the arts” Justice in Motion present a powerful and intimate piece blending elements of dance, dramatic performance, video and sound.

Three characters inhabit the stage, and the attention of the audience is first focussed on each in detail, but as the action progresses and the stories blend, the characters’ movements begin to shadow each other through their shared experiences. (more…)

Bound. For elsewhere. To circumstance. To others.

Ivanka, Nadine and Simeon each come from vastly different walks of life, yet are connected by a common experience – driven by the hope of a better life, each finds themselves bound to circumstances they would never have chosen or foreseen for themselves  and each must now choose to what extent they will be defined, shaped or broken by them.  New Oxford company Justice in Motion present their debut production BOUND, taking inspiration from true accounts of human trafficking, to create a compelling and thought-provoking piece of physical theatre, exploring each character’s journey through a dynamic fusion of storytelling, contemporary circus, music, projection and dance. (more…)

PointZero Physical Theatre present the premiere performance of their physical/dance-theatre production piece – RECYCLE: Disposable Lives for 2-nights only at the Old Fire Station (OFS) on 15th & 16th March 2013.  This works-in-progress professional premiere performance finally arrives over 12-months after its initial thought-conception; it has been developed with workshops, devising sessions and rehearsals taking place in 4 different countries and includes a 10-piece cast from 5 different countries.  The company is particularly excited to re-collaborate with and include PointZero Associate and award-winning professional dancer/performer Nathalie Frossard from Switzerland within the company for Recycle.   Nathalie is a highly accomplished, world-class professional contemporary dancer & dance-theatre performer who has been collaborating with PointZero Physical Theatre for 10 years. (more…)