Dance Degree Students Pictured Above
with Australian Artist Adam Deusian
Adam, who lives and works in Bathurst, New South Wales, visited Derby as part of his research project exploring the work of artists and organisations based outside major cities.
His three-week visit included sessions with the Dance degree students based at Déda in Chapel Street.
He helped them develop their theatrical approach to movement – blending physical theatre skills with dance.
The students will now develop the choreography and perform it as part of their end of year show at Déda this summer.
Adam also spent time with Derbyshire-based dance performance artist and choreographer Alice Marshall (nee Vale) who is programme leader of the degree programme and with team members at Déda to learn more about their work as the region’s dance house with a national and international focus on fusing dance with contemporary circus and outdoor performance work.
Adam explained: “My research project is looking at how artists and arts organisations work in these areas – the challenges they face and opportunities for the future.
“This has been a great opportunity to work closely with Déda, Alice and the degree students and I am taking away some great ideas both for the project and for potential future collaborations.
“Bathurst is much smaller than Derby and is regarded as a rural town but with a strong arts community.
“Our challenges include how to encourage people to travel from places like Sydney to our town and to support artists to stay in more rural areas to work and perform.
“There is an equally metro-centric attitude to the arts in the UK – albeit with less geographical issues.
“It has therefore been fascinating to see how Déda has developed as a regional centre of excellence – supporting artists, young people and local communities and especially how it is working in partnership with the University of Derby to create a new and unique Dance degree programme.”
Alice Marshall first met Adam whilst she was Associate Artist at Déda with her dance company Adaire to Dance.
She said: “Despite living and working at opposite ends of the world – there are so many similarities to the challenges and opportunities that we face as artists and it has been fascinating to work with Adam on this research.
“The degree students really enjoyed their time with Adam and it has greatly helped them in their module to develop story telling through movement and encouraging them to push their boundaries.”
Clare Limb, Head of Dance Development and Learning at Déda concluded: “As part of our role to support local, national and international artists, we backed Adam’s application to the Australian Government to come here and see how we have developed as a regional dance house as part of his overall research project.
“It has been particularly interesting to learn more about Bathurst’s experience of hosting the national youth circus festival which is an area of particular expertise for Déda and the possibilities of working together in the future are very exciting.”
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