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Brighton Festival – dance highlights

The 51st Brighton Festival launched this month under the guest curatorship of Kate Tempest and with the theme of Everyday Epic. Dance and physical theatre plays a starring role in this year’s festival programme and here our Director of Programming Cath James takes us through her top tips in time for public booking opening on Friday 24 Feb.

Brighton-based Theo Clinkard really is a rising star of the dance world with an amazing gift for choreographing beautiful lush movement. For Brighton Festival, Theo presents the world premiere of his new work This Bright Field, hot on the heels of creating a piece for the late Pina Bausch’s Tanztheater Wuppertal. Expect a memorable event.

A new solo work from former South East Dance Associate Antonia Grove will be presented at Brighton Festival partner venue The Attenborough Centre for Creative Arts. Now You See It crosses disciplines and showcases Antonia’s extraordinary virtuosity as a performer.

When I saw it Plan B for Utopia had me laughing out loud - the performers are so amazing. This is a great piece for these ‘interesting times’ and not to be missed if you are at all interested in how we could respond to the state we are in.

South East Dance Emerging Artists The Hiccup Project bring rowdy, messy, laugh out loud funny physical theatre to the festival with the award winning May We Go Round and their new work It’s okay, I’m dealing with it

Also supported by South East Dance is The Hum, a site specific sound & movement trail based in the city by interdisciplinary artists Nic Sandiland and Yael Flexer. To experience The Hum, simply download the free app on the Dome website, plug in a pair of headphones and follow the trail on your screen. 

Following on from Vincent Dance Theatre’s live work Virgin Territory that premiered at The Place last year, the Virgin Territory video installation features the four young performers and four professional dancers who took part in the original live production. The full challenging, provocative Charlotte Vincent experience is what you will get.

I saw M!longa at Sadlers Wells when it first premiered and really enjoyed the scale and oomph of this work. Great visuals and performances and I loved the tango and the live band – a perfect night out. 

I won’t miss this reading of debut novel and Brighton Festival/City Reads Big Read for adults The Handsworth Times from Brighton-based novelist - and our very own Head of Communications - Sharon Duggal. This will be fantastic – I’ve read The Handsworth Times and thoroughly recommend it.

Finally - and not just because I am Australian - sensational Australian contemporary circus group Casus presents Driftwood, and Circa (from my hometown Brisbane) presents Depart. It would seem that Australian Circus is on its way to world domination, not that I am biased in any way. I’ll be at these two for sure.

This Bright Field. Theo Clinkard. Image © Theo Clinkard


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