The first edition of Oxford Dance Forum’s ODF Presents… at The Old Fire Station showcased work-in-progress by five Oxford based dance artists and companies, as part of a three year Arts Council England funded professional development programme.

Ana Barbour:  Rope, Rock, R…

The opening piece of the evening unwound from a quiet, subtle beginning to great sweeps of movement and sound. The idea of examining the way that a lifeless object such as a length of rope can move and change shape, was an intriguing one, and an original way to develop a performance piece. There was some interesting use of multimedia, with projected images which Ana interacted with quite directly at times, at other times providing a less prominent backdrop.  It felt as though a large span of emotions and characteristics was explored in a short time, from intricate delicate movements and a soft, almost caressing interaction with the hanging rope on stage, to a cheeky, flirtatious moment of tango, and the violent rage of the rock star. Throughout all of these elements, Ana maintained a relationship with the audience; from defiant stares to small smiles and moments where she was facing away from us, one felt included in the journey that played out. The quick switch between different temperaments and movement styles in an instant was impressive, as was her innovative use of the props and media.  (more…)

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How fitting that on the day that a woman took over at 10 Downing Street, Oxford was celebrating the work of women choreographers and dancers in first night of the Women GOlive programme.

Curator Donald Hutera has brought together an impressively novel and varied selection of works by local, national and international artists, which last night ranged from an intensely focussed Butoh-based solo by Ana Barbour, through Jane Connelly’s liquid contemporary dance style, to the disconcerting humour and provocative wit of Susan Kempster, performance poet Jemima Foxtrot and Aliki Mbakoyianni. (more…)

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

 

 

Followers of Oxford Dance Writers who enjoyed Jane Connelly’s description of One Billion Rising  or Emily Coats’ account of her Swan Lake dance protest  will be fascinated by this book.

In Embodied politics: dance, protest and identities Stacey Prickett approaches her vast subject by means of four discrete but interlinked essays, in which she considers dance activism firstly in the US and then in Britain in the 1920s and 1930s, before turning to look at developments in the San Francisco Bay area around the turn of the 21st century and finally the South Asian dance movement in Britain. There is a logical chronological sequence to the work, but each of the four chapters has its own intrinsic structure and could be read independently.  Prickett uses the introduction and conclusion to draw together the threads that run through the work (more…)

At The Old Fire Station Scratch Nights, held on every third Tuesday of the month, local and regional theatre performers, comedians or dance artists perform works in progress for audiences to watch and give feedback on.  After a year of successful Theatre Scratch Nights, the current season season has included three different Scratch Nights – Theatre, Comedy and Dance.  This month, the next DANCE SCRATCH takes place, supported by Oxford Dance Forum.  Artists presenting work will be Natalie Heller, Jenny Parrott, Jane Connelly, Erika Montenegro, Paulette Mae and a guest artist from Brighton, Emmeline Cresswell.  If you are able to, do come along to support them, see their new work and have the opportunity to offer feedback to them.

Performance: Tuesday 15th July at 7.30pm

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

Tickets:  £5 available on the door

Please spread the word to anyone who may be interested to come!

 

From 5th December 2013 to 2nd February 2014 Modern Art Oxford presented A Storyteller’s Inadequacy, the first UK solo exhibition by artist Eva Kotátková in which she proposed a playful and awkward relationship between performance, object, sculpture and installation.  A Storyteller’s Inadequacy saw a giant speech organ command the space of the Upper Gallery, creating a playground, gym, theatre and circus mixed environment for a group of performers to enact poses and temporary body constellations. The performers interacted with an eclectic range of objects in an exploration of the possibilities as well as the limits and barriers in human communication and interaction. Oxford dance artist Jane Connelly describes her experience as one of those performers in the personal account below. (more…)

This show followed the theme of time. Lunas Dance Project’s new work Measuring Time started and ended the show, framing works by guest companies in the middle.

Measuring Time: Part 1 and Part 2. The piece began as Ellie Aldegheri moved a stone from a heap at the side of the stage to a new pile beside it; she danced a powerful solo, then joined all the dancers grouped at the back. There were fast sequences of intense movement on, off, around and across the stage, and with big umbrellas and newspapers, including a solo of quiet intensity from Elly Tiburcio. (more…)