Hiccup: From Fringe to Festival
We first spotted The Hiccup Project as part of an experimental evening of new work at the Studio Theatre, Brighton Dome. The Hiccup women; Cristina MacKerron and Chess Dillon-Reams, both graduated from Northern School of Contemporary Dance and were back in their home town of Brighton, eager to develop their choreography and performance. Their work in progress: May-We-Go-Round? was refreshingly sassy, authentic and right on the money – drawing on their own teenage histories with wit and humour. We could see the potential in their very early explorations, and their clear dance talent.
We invited them onto our Emerging Artists programme, a support programme for young artists to develop creative and producing skills. We provided mentoring, cash and support in developing their fundraising skills and networking introductions to get there work out there and into venues.
Working with our Dramaturg In Residence, Lou Cope, May-We-Go-Round? was reworked and presented in Brighton Fringe 2015 to sell out houses, and won the inaugural South East Dance Brighton Fringe Award. Arts Council funding success and a national tour followed. Hiccup took their work to Edinburgh Fringe, receiving excellent reviews and again, good houses, and in the process, a new relationship with Dance Base, Scotland’s national dance centre.
Hiccup’s second work It’s okay, I’m dealing with it was presented in Brighton Fringe 2016, with continued mentoring and support from South East Dance and, from this, we put their work forward for inclusion in Kate Tempest’s Brighton Festival 2017.
All the best work begins with our deeply personal experiences. The Hiccup Project instinctively dig into that place and find a richly comic and authentically physical world there.
Ben Duke, Lost Dog
We are delighted with their success and loved seeing Chess and Cristina in action during the festival.
It's been a whirlwind, high speed, very exciting, super tiring, adrenaline fuelled journey for us.
In 2014, we entered a scratch night with a 10 minute work in progress in Brighton, hosted by SED. Three years later, we're performing as part of the Brighton Festival with two full length works. As local Brightonians, and with its prestigious reputation, this is a real high point for us in our careers - particularly this year with Kate Tempest as guest director, and the whole ethos of it.