Power Of 3 Tour 2015 starts soon

Première of Power Of 3 Tour 2015

Première of Power Of 3 Tour 2015

Today marks the start of the marketing of our new show The Power Of 3.  To celebrate with us, we thought that we would let you in on a preview of the animated film that will be part of Catrin’s new piece d-cay.  You can read a little more about d-cay by following this link.

We open the show at our home theatre, The Met in Abertillery, South Wales UK on Friday May 8th at 7.30pm, you can get tickets from the box office by calling 01495 355800 or follow this online link 

We would love to hear what you think, please use the speech bubble above with your comments.

A is for A Level Dance

Jerome Robbins

Jerome Robbins

This is the second year of our A Level Dance Course for students and we shortly see the young dancers presenting their choreographies and performing solos for their practical test.  Part of the test involves choreographing a group dance based on given stimuli, and the other part of the test sees the students performing a solo dance choreographed in the style of a set practitioner.  In the case of the latter, we have chosen the great Jerome Robbins: our company dancer Catrin has choreographed a short solo in this style which the students will perform for the examiner.

Each week the students have been working hard with their group dancers to make some lovely work.  One piece has examined the music of Goldmund, another has translated a visual image into a 3 minute dance work, another has looked at an Oriental tea garden – very diverse topics.
There will of course be a written examination at the end of the course where the students answer questions on a given period of dance history and a set work.
A really tough course, designed to test the all round skills of a dance student, not the “flinging around a studio waving your arms” examination that some people may have us believe!

I am immensely proud of the way in which our students have undertaken their tasks and sincerely hope that they will be rewarded with good results, I wish them all the luck they deserve for their hard work.

sue lewis

Wibbly-wobbly, timey-wimey…

Fascination Image Paul Trask Chor Sue Lewis

Fascination
Image Paul Trask
Chor Sue Lewis

It’s always the way with studio time – it seems that you can blink and suddenly you’re nearly at the end of 2 weeks together. Having said that, I feel like these 2 weeks have really allowed us some time and space to progress both Fascination and d-cay, and given us a good dollop of preparation time for beginning work with Gary next week. (Plus a handy helping of pancakes thrown in for good measure!)

With Fascination, we spent last week working through section by section – refining detail and quality and looking at all of those pesky entrances, exits and transitions between sections. This has helped in establishing a sense of cohesion throughout the piece which we pulled together for a run through this afternoon.

This week also saw us getting a first viewing of the film that has been made in conjunction with Catrin’s piece, d-cay. It’s a very striking watch which will lead into the live movement section of the piece. Having seen the film has also influenced the proximity with which we perform a particular unison section – there’s no room for error or else there’ll be a whole lot of stepping on toes going on!

For Gary, we have begun using the duet Sentient Trace which was created for Meg and Catrin last season as starting point. We are now looking at each person’s role in the duet as solo material – it has certainly been a lot of material to take on board and commit to memory. We have tried several different methods of learning the material – initially from video, then from each other with talking and then just with physical demonstrations without vocal explanations. It has been lovely to devote time to this (although frustrating at times when watching the same moment on video over and over until you can approximate a physical realisation) and I’m excited to see how things start to proceed when we come together with Gary next week.

Here’s to making the most of our last couple of studio days in Wales this week and appreciating our time together while we have it.

Effie 🙂

That was the week

PabloPicasso-Three-Women-at-the-Spring-1921_grandeSo that’s the first studio week over creating my new work for the company – Fascination.

I’m working with a trio of women, Effie, Catrin and Natasha examining some of Picasso’s paintings and why he used three figures in his work so much.

I’ve been astounded at the dancers’ response to the tasks that I have set them: such depth of understanding from tiny intricate details to larger more general pictorial representation.

Many choreographers dislike working with 3 dancers, thinking that the numerical variations possible with 3 can be limiting, but I personally love it1 I adore the asymmetry, the lop-sided qualities, the angles, the relationships, the patterns and so on and on.

And then on to my role – the manipulation of material.

Already starting to structure (just can’t help myself ), I have a very clear vision of where the piece will go. My last work for the company – Fractal – was a series of solos that unfolded as episodes, with occasional groupings thrown in for good measure. Fascination doesn’t work in that way: the sections are governed by the score as in Fractal, but each scene varies from the previous and subsequent one. Today we are working on 5 separate vignettes, inspired by Picasso’s Three Bathers including a trio, 2 solos and 2 duets that will be performed concurrently.

It’s been a most rewarding and exciting week, hope the dancers think so too!

Join us next week as we continue our work with Picasso

sue lewis

 

 

 

 

Excitement in the air

Rachel picAs the winter dance faktry festival rehearsals begins to step up and everybody starts working even harder, there’s always that excitement and eagerness that fills the air.

Being involved with the winter dance faktry festival this year I will be performing with Combination Dance and I’ll be performing a solo piece of my own. For the Combination piece I will be performing with a variety of dancers; we enjoy rehearsals as there is always laughter involved but we are keen to make sure everything is right for the piece.
My very first solo choreography will be showing what I have learnt from studying A Level Dance with FFIN DANCE. I’ve enjoyed learning about the different ways of developing a motif and structuring my own choreography, I never realised how important all the little details were!  I’ve really enjoyed learning about all the topics and music making, I come home every day thinking what can there be to learn next? There is always something new it never ends and I love it!
I am nervous but with a mixture of excitement at the same time to be part of the winter dance faktry festival show this Saturday – and now I can not wait for the show to begin!

Let’s show them what we can do guys!
Rachel

Busy times

_PRT0240I am currently preparing for the winter
dance faktry festival with the Blaenau Gwent county youth dance company The Move, Combination
Dance and I’m also creating a solo as part of my A level Dance course with FFIN DANCE.

It is a very busy time for me and my fellow dancers because we are all working hard and doing lots of rehearsals to ensure our pieces are ready and polished for the show.
It is very tiring preparing for a show but it is also very enjoyable and rewarding. It is especially rewarding to see the pieces progress as the show gets closer.
With The Move I am performing a piece called Distort which we have performed before: we have worked on developing the piece and getting back to the original intention of the piece ready for the faktry festival performance. In Combination Dance, we are working on a new piece so it will be exciting to perform it for one of the first times. Finally I have been creating a solo piece which is to help
with my A Level Dance studies with Ffin Dance. Making my first solo piece has been very challenging but I have thoroughly enjoyed the experience of making my own choreography although it’s been particularly hard at times. There’s a lot involved – much more involved in making your own piece than I ever thought!
There’s the lights,costume,title all things I’ve never considered when dancing before. It’s very rewarding to see it all starting to come together now and I am looking forward to performing my solo.

I’m really looking forward to the show next week and so are my
fellow dancers.

Gemma Two hearts

Fractal 3

IMG_3106One week has already passed and I’m thrilled with the work that we have achieved thus far in the studio.

We’ve been working on solo episodes this week, in close connection with the sublime score by JS Bach, discovering dynamics and structure that aid with the colouring of each performer’s  individual take on each section of the suite.

Having originally being written for dance, the Baroque suite was very often named a Suite de Danse and ultimately it lends itself to choreography so well, and is so often an amazing tool for choreographers of every genre.

The dancers have been experimenting with a number of floor and air patterns making a phrase from this improvisation stage.  Then after “borrowing”  material from each others’ patterns, they have created longer passages of movement material that are developed into solos.

Immensely looking forward to next week, I’ve had a splendid time in the studio – hope the dancers have too!  Never one to be indulgent on a grand scale, I am feeling very, very fortunate to have such an amazing team around me in the ever extending FFIN family.

Look out for more blogs from the dancers very soon

sue lewis

All Systems About To Go

FFIN DANCE Image Simon Scott

FFIN DANCE
Image Simon Scott

Hello to all FFIN DANCE followers familiar and new!

As I leave the student world and enter the realms of the freelance artist, I must firstly say how excited I am to be taking a step forward into the company. This season will prove to be an exceptionally challenging one as I take on the role of both performer and choreographer.

I’ll be re-constructing my final major piece Stand up Straight, that was originally created at the Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance in June 2013.   With the help of Artistic Director Sue Lewis and original perfomer Lily Turner,  I hope to create something equally as innovative and fresh to witness as an audience member.  This piece will be 1 of 3 that forms the triple bill – Still Standing – which will tour in 2014

Stay close for my updates on research and development and the initial strategies that were put into practice in the studio.

Enjoy your week Cat x

My eventful trip to Trinity Laban

New work Catrin Lewis

New work Catrin Lewis

May 9th 10.40 am arrived on train to find someone sitting in my reserved seat, who obviously had no idea about reservations, quiet carriage etiquette or general manners whilst eating (maybe she wasn’t taught as a child to keep mouth closed whilst chewing). Phone charger breaks.  Good start I thought.

Train 30 minutes late into Paddington, central London packed. La,la,la.  Return journey eventful!  Stuck in Edgware Road missed train from Paddington by 2 minutes.  No phone battery, no train. Eventually got back to Newport at 2am station locked, lift turns up 2.20 am.  Arrived back at Hobbits cold, wet, hungry and truly exhilarated.  Read on…

 

I don’t usually bring too much of my home and family life into my blogs, but here is an exception.
I had the privilege of watching my daughter Catrin’s final piece of choreography yesterday which was being assessed as part of her Dance course at Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance.  She has made the piece on company dancer Megan Griffiths together with BA3 dancers Lily Turner, Russell Fine,Heli-Maria Latola and Gordan Raeburn who did a valiant job with some pretty gritty movement phrases.  It was spectacular!  An excellent piece of choreography including good structural device and relevant movement content to the subject of Vertigo.  Great lighting too under the watchful eye of the genius Faye Patterson.

Audience reaction was good, we all felt that we could have watched another 10 minutes, even though Catrin said they couldn’t have given any more, the dancers disagreed with her!  A piece which is certainly going to be developed at some point in time.

Another privilege was to watch Julian Lewis’ rehearsal as I couldn’t get to his showing today.  Some excellent performances from his dancers and a refreshing dance idea developed into a mature and complex new work called Surrealist Entity.

So many more mature and established choreographers showing work on the current dance scene could have learned a few things from the refreshing and simplistic approach to work by these young choreographers.  No endless passages of simply filling in the musical structure, thoughtful linear structure and design collaboration with no pretentious lip service.  Let’s see more of this!

So, exhausted and frazzled I arrived home to Wales, but so very glad I had made that journey to experience first hand the joys of new art in the throes of its creation.  Thank you.