Arts Award

Déda is an Arts Award Centre and Supporter, with several trained advisors that cover all levels of the award, from Discover and Explore to Bronze, Silver and Gold.

If you are interested in doing part or all of your Arts Award with us then contact a member of the Dance Development and Learning Team.


Projects and Participation

Our Dance Development and Learning Team work on a variety of projects, from the small scale to large scale outdoor work.

All Dance

All Dance was originally part of the Cultural Olympiad celebrations in Derbyshire in 2012, inviting disabled people to learn to dance, and it was launched to coincide with the closing ceremony of the Paralympic Games in London. Sixteen dance artists worked with disabled people from groups across Derbyshire creating dance pieces in just eight weeks. These dances were performed at Derbyshire’s first county-wide disability dance platform, a Day of Dance on November 2012 at the Donut Creative Arts Studios (DCAS) in Chesterfield.

Derbyshire County Council continued this work as part of the Made in Derbyshire 2015 programme, which celebrated the people, places and products of Derbyshire. Eight different groups performed at two celebration performance events, one in the north of the county at Cliff College, Calver and one in the south at Friesland School, Sandiacre. Over 100 people participated, 87 with a disability, ranging from learning disabilities to Profound and Multiple Learning Disabilities. The Council used this as a pilot project, providing evidence that helped secure funding from Arts Council England for the current two year dance project. 

In the autumn of 2017, eight Lead Dance Artists and four Support Dance Artists worked in each of the eight Derbyshire Boroughs or Districts with one community group from each, on a dance piece uniquely created by their group. They successfully created a piece and performed at one of the two dedicated All Dance events which took place at Déda and at The Winding Wheel in Chesterfield. Following these performances the artists have continued to work with their group throughout spring of 2018.

The All Dance project aims to:

Improve the artistic development and creative ability of disabled people, whilst encouraging more dance provision throughout the county for people with disabilities. It aims to raise the profile and expectations of people with disabilities and audience members, changing people's perceptions of what is possible. The project also strives to improve the physical health and wellbeing of participants by providing dance activities, workshops and performances; enable people with disabilities to feel more in control of their own lives, through taking part in the choreography of their own dances. The project also aims to increase the skills and opportunities for artists working or living in Derbyshire.

For further information on the development of this project please contact Clare Limb, Head of Dance Development and Learning at Déda, via email.

With special thanks to:

CVS Links (Chesterfield); EMH Care; Just Good Friends; Our Vision Our Future; People Express; Bank House (Swadlincote); Swadlincote Aspergers Society; University of Derby.

Many thanks also to the Lead and Support Artists who have worked on the project, as well as the volunteers and steering group members who have given their time to All Dance this year.

A big thank you to all the centres that have hosted All Dance groups and for your support in making this project happen.

Finally, thanks go to all the participants who have taken part in the project. We hope that your experience as part of All Dance 2017 has been exciting and memorable.


Arts and Health

Creative Living

Creative Living aims to enhance the talent, experience and enthusiasm of over 55s in the creative arts by delivering visual arts and dance workshops by Artcore and Déda in various community venues in Derby starting from 16 October 2017. Each workshop will work with the imagination, creativity and memory of the participants and involve creative conversations and simple art making methods in order to reduce social isolation.

The project addresses Derby’s priority of supporting older people to live enriching lives. The project will involve the talent, experience and enthusiasm of older people in the creative arts. 

There are four main strands to the project: Participation, Production, Celebration and Progression 

An older people’s Ambassador Group is formed to support programme design and delivery and ensure older people’s voices are represented.

As active people within their communities, the ambassadors will be supported to become a group of advocates and champions for culture in Derby.


Dementia and Wellbeing

Déda’s Dance Development and Learning Team have been partnering with Making Space to explore how dance can be used as an aid to improving the wellbeing of those living with Dementia. Isobel Davis, our dance development and learning co-ordinator, has been leading on the pilot project:

"Over the past 3 months, I have been working on a very exciting Dementia pilot project. For this I have been delivering dance and creative movement to a pre-existing dementia group run by the organisation Making Spaces.

"The group I have been working with are a musical memories group who usually spend their time singing karaoke, competing in music quizzes, chatting and consuming plenty of tea and biscuits! I have been attending the group, luckily not as a singer, but as a dance artist. So far the group have created their own movements using scarfs and ribbons, exploring movement to sounds, instruments, and socialising through dance and movement more and more.

The evaluation forms completed after each session during the pilot scheme showed a positive impact on participants in the following key areas:

- How isolated participants felt
- How frustrated participants felt
- How relaxed participants felt
- How confident participants felt

For full evaluation information see: January Feedback - February Feedback - March Feedback

Following the success of the pilot project, we are very proud and enthusiastic to be continuing our work in this important area.

"Due to excellent response, I will be continuing to work with the group, dancing, smiling and laughing together!" Isobel Davis, Dance Development and Learning Co-ordinator.

Postural Stability Instruction (PSI)

Our Dance Development and Learning Team are delighted to have successfully secured £10,000 from Sport England's Small Grant Fund to deliver a pioneering dance project in partnership with Derby City Council’s Move More Team.

The project will explore approaches to the delivery of Postural Stability Instruction (PSI), using dance and creativity as a means to engaging and retaining participants in the programme. This project will last for a year and will see Déda’s Dance Development and Learning Team deliver three PSI programmes in three different locations across the city, followed by a maintenance programme. Our project will be evidenced by a combination of quantitative and qualitative data, which will provide a sound evidence base for Déda to develop its work in the field of Falls Prevention even further.

Plus One

Plus One, is a programme which has been designed specifically for young people who are or have been in care and is all about connecting people. That includes working with award winning writers and directors and some great local arts organisations to offer activities most people don’t get chance to do.

So, the major arts and cultural organisations in Derby have joined forces to provide exciting opportunities for young people to experience and participate in a wide range of arts activities. Everything from producing a new play for theatre, street dancing to music recording and even film making. You might enjoy the technical side of staging a performance, or the opportunity to work with a writer or poet, make a film or help produce and host arts events throughout the city and beyond!


If you are interested in commissioning us or getting involved in any of the above projects, then please feel free to contact a member of the Dance Development and Learning Team on 01332 374 682 or email.

Previous Projects

Games Time

2012 saw us work on Games Time, a large scale Cultural Olympiad Project commissioned by Legacy Trust UK and involving 480 participants and 49,000 spectators across the East Midlands region. Alongside this we worked with over 12,000 children, young people and adults through our various Dance Development and Learning programmes in a wide range of settings.

Dancing in the Museums

In 2014 we worked with Derby Museums and Choreographer Katie Green to develop choreography inspired by school visits to the collections and exhibitions in the museum on The Strand. 

Katie and her company, Made by Katie Green will then spend a week visiting local Derby City Schools, working with children aged 7 – 11 years to create their own museum-inspired dances. The project will culminate in several public professional performances of The Imagination Museum, at Derby Museum.

Locally based Partnership Programme

Déda, with partners QUAD, Derby Theatre, Sinfonia VIVA and Derby Museums have recently been given funding by The Mighty Creatives to work with Key Stage 2 pupils in the Derby City wards of Normanton and Arboretum.

The project, titled Live My Imagination focusses on developing children as participants, creators and commissioners of culture in their city. This project will run until 2015 and will enable the children taking part in it to achieve their Discover and Explore Arts Award with the aim of raising their attainment in school.

BigBD-East_Midland.jpg Dance

Big Dance is an annual national programme, designed to encourage people to take part in dance activity as a participant, performer or spectator. Déda is part of the Big Dance Hub Partnership, East Midlands. 

The Big Dance Pledge is designed to be an accessible participation opportunity for all individuals and groups including schools, private dance schools, youth clubs, sports clubs and community groups.

Our work in 2012 was a great success with 27,787 engaging and 112,999 audiences experiencing the programme in the East Midlands region.