Welcome to U.Dance!

Choreographer Charlotte Eatock has been commissioned to work with some of Plymouths finest Youth Dancers who will be performing a very special sited piece of dance at this evenings U.Dance 2015 welcome event! Here is a sneak peek of the dancers in rehearsal and a few words from two of the dancers who have been working with Charlotte.

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The welcome commission rehearsals have been nothing but continuous laughter. Charlotte Eatock’s choreography with the seven dancers is highly energetic, vibrant, and humorous the work is completely audience interactive. We have draw inspiration from various and creative choreographic exercises allowing us individually to show our own dance styles.

I have felt truly privileged and proud to work alongside such talented, driven and creative young Plymouth dancers. We are all super excited to open U.Dance on 22nd July

Laura Henry – Welome Commission DancerIMG_3960

To watch and learn from Charlotte Eatock in the way she works has been completely inspiring. The welcome commission process has aided me to develop my dance vocabulary and build my confidence dramatically. It’s been an honour to work alongside professional dancers, undergraduates and dancers from the community on this project. I know I can talk for all the dancers when I say we are raring to show the work we have all worked so hard on.

Isaac Miller – Welcome Commission Dancer

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Dance in the City with us!

If you were in Plymouth City Centre this weekend just gone it would have been impossible to have missed us at the Piazza! The sun was out and so were Plymouth (and Cornwall) finest street dancers were out to impress. Member of the public were welcomed into the groove and busted some serious moves with Street Impact and Rhythm Citys Chris Gilchrist.

We even had a special (surprise) performance from Cornwalls 4FunxSake who came down to watch and ended up performing. This has by far been one of our favourite community engagement events we have delivered over the past 6 months. Watching so many different people joining in with the workshops and clapping along to the performances has been priceless.

It was so good we even made The Herald! We still have 2 more jam packed days to go so don’t miss out and get yourself down to Place de Brest on Thursday and The Piazza on Friday 12-4pm.

Here are some images by the wonderful Kevin Clifford of Saturdays 18th July.

The Final Count Down…

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Image of Claire Summers by Fotonow

After over 12 months of planning and preparation  U.Dance 2015, the national Youth Dance Festival is finally here!

This week is going to be jam packed with dance events for you to get involved with from FREE City Centre workshops and Performances as part of Dance in the City or performances from the best Youth Dancers in the country at the Theatre Royal Thursday Friday and Saturday night. The week with end with the cumulation of our community engagement around the festival Dance PLYMOUTH Dance on Saturday evening.

Make sure you subscribe to keep up to date with our team of Volunteers who will be blogging throughout the festival and don’t forget to Tweet us @PlymouthDance

Claire Summers

Local Project Coordinator U.Dance 2015

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The training I and many other volunteers have received in preparation for U.Dance 2015 has been fantastic, from learning good communication skills to being qualified First Aiders we have all taken something from each training whether it be a skill or very handy information.

Training has taken place within many different venues to name a couple, The Creative Arts School and the Barbican Theatre. Being in different spaces in Plymouth is exciting as you find yourself seeing most of Plymouth en route to each venue and begin to know where everything is before having any physical training. It’s also refreshing as you get to meet artists and managers who resident within the spaces and are more than happy to help with anything you need.

Being a volunteer we’ve all had the fantastic opportunity to get our training and certificates for free such as being DBS certified this enabling us to work with children and also being first aid trained putting everyone involved with the festival in safe hands. Literally.

We’ve also had brilliant training by a range of people, here are a few I thoroughly enjoyed learning:

Dan Baker, Manager of the Barbican Theatre informed us with Hospitality and Customer Service training, small things that can sometimes be forgotten are always good reminders. For example: Looking presentable and being approachable. Also to be knowledgeable of the event and the area, as if we are a U.Dance 2015 flyer but 10 times more exciting and encouraging.

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Photo by Siobhan Bowie-Wooler

Claire Summers, Artistic Director of Exim Dance Company and Project Co-ordinator for Plymouth Dance trained the volunteers within Child Protection and Safe Guarding. This was great training and eye opened me and many others to ensure the safety of children and how to go about it.

Jade Poole, Corporate Funding Development Co-ordinator for Plymouth Dance and General Manager of Exim Dance Company gave the volunteers brilliant training on Networking. Networking is something I have personally struggled with, being chatty and confident with talking to people and creating these small interactions or connections that either gets your name, company or event out there. This is valuable information and training to receive as audience members or dancers will be looking to us as volunteers to know where all of the facilities are within venues, to have a good understanding of the city and other events happening in the festival. So being able to talk confidently about the festival and who we are connects us to numerous different people that we may end up helping or working with for our next projects that we take on.

Rhiannon Williams

Plymouth Dance Volunteer 2015

Dance in the City

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Dance in the City has been a HUGE success! We still have 4 more dates left so make sure you get yourself to one of them and join us on the dance floor or just enjoy watching the fun. We will be at The Piazza from 12 this Saturday with Popin’ Petes Pop Shop and Sunday with performances and workshops with groups from across the South West.

Here are some images of last weekend to wet your appetite!

Images of Saturday 11th July By Claire Summers

Getting ready for Dance PLYMOUTH Dance

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Olivia rehearsing for Dance PLYMOUTH Dance with ADAPT at TR2 Image by Claire Summers

On the 5th July I was tasked with filming the rehearsals of groups and companies taking part in U.dance 2015 and are to perform on the Theatre Royal stage during the festival, the rehearsals took place at TR2 and the rehearsals were guided by Jules Laville. Each company has a one hour rehearsal slot.

The companies that were rehearsing for their performance at the Theatre Royal ranged from different ages and abilities, as well as different styles of dance. Ranging from ballet to contemporary dance.

Each company rehearsed in a space around the same size as the Theatre Royal stage to help give the choreographer and their dancers a chance to see how their piece would work as well as to make an adjustments to their piece around the size of the stage. The groups rehearse a few times, then final run is recorded at the end of the rehearsal session.

Olivia Whitby

make sure you get your tickets for U.Dance 2015 and Dance PLYMOUTH Dance as they are selling FAST!

Volunteers READY! A few words from Gemma Ward our amazing Volunteer Coordinator

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Image of U.Dance Volunteers with Chris Robinson by Gemma Ward

I have had the pleasure of coordinating the U.DANCE volunteers for this years festival and it has been a really great opportunity.  Not only have I been able to meet a really lovely range of enthusiastic and committed young people I have also been able to help shape some really useful and valuable training for them via Plymouth Dance and these training opportunities have helped them to build really valuable skills that will equip them for future work as well as being really useful for U.DANCE. 

Over the last few months we have been running first aid, child protection, project management, marketing, customer service and networking training, along with providing lots of opportunities for the volunteers to volunteer with other local creative projects and events to build up their skills ahead of U.DANCE.  We even had training on the history of the city with the lovely Chris Robinson!

Everyone on the team is passionate about arts and creativity and are really looking forward to being a part of the festival and I am really excited that we have been able to equip them with a really great range of skills and opportunities ahead of the festival to make sure they are ready for everything the festival will throw at them!  

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Image Kevin Clifford

We have all our schedules and responsibilities in place and cannot wait to don our blue t-shirts and welcome everyone here to the city for the U.DANCE weekend.