Its PRODUCTION WEEK!
After a long term of creativity and technical training, production week has finally arrived. This is always one of my favourites times of year, bringing the faktry and the company together for a real celebration of the work that has been undertaken in this last season.
Winter Dance Faktry Festival 2018 has been curated by the ffin team as a display of the highlights of this term’s exciting work and a presentation of the whole community. ffin dance presents also showcases the work of local dance and performance schools in a joyous celebration in our home theatre, The Beaufort.
Monday didn’t know what hit it! It was great to be back in the studio this morning with the company for professional class. The company’s newest professional dancer, Georgina always brings new energy and her class is no different. What a wicked way to start our day.
Leaving the company to it, it was time to get back to work. The Faktry never stops. The Beaufort Theatre is a great space to work and the café is one of my favourite parts of the building. I spent a good portion of the day finalising my lighting plans for the work that I am sharing in this years festival. Leading the teaching and choreography at the Abertillery Faktry classes this term has been a real treat for me, getting to work with some fantastic young people always gives me a Monday evening buzz!! Takes me back to the old Move days!
Nothing finishes a good afternoon’s work than a flat white! The coffee here is incredible! After creating some really interesting lighting designs it was time to teach. Tonight was the last rehearsal session for my groups and they really rose to the occasion and if these classes are anything to go by this week will be another great festival week.
My new work is based on the underlying themes of JB Priestley’s amazingly progressive but classic play An Inspector Calls.
Catrin, Julian and Georgina began their R&D time in the studio with me today discussing the characters, the historical context, the social background and of course the parity with contemporary society that emanates from the play. As a result, soliloquies were made with each dancer transposing these ideas into moment terms – what a talented bunch!
I’m hoping that each day I can share with you our studio time and would welcome your interaction with us – please use the speech bubbles on this page to tell us your thoughts.
Still very early days, but Day 1 was exceptional, please stay with us.
So here we are at last! I started making my new work in the studio back in the autumn of 2017 and Crib will see its première this coming Friday at The Beaufort Theatre.
The title needs a little explanation I think.
I started choreographing professionally when I was teaching Dance at Ebbw Vale Senior Comprehensive School and spent many, many happy years working with students, creating work for our annual dance shows. Together with my own passion for Prince music and that of the students, each show became peppered with tracks like Purple Rain, Sometimes It Snows In April, Nothing Compares To You, Little Red Corvette, Raspberry Beret, 1999 and many more.
Over 21 years we got through a fair amount as you can guess.
It’s most fitting that I return to The Beaufort Theatre as this place holds a very special place in my heart. It was the first place I performed, the first place I presented amateur choreography, the first place I presented professional choreography and now the company I founded FFIN DANCE has its home there since we took on the asset from Blaenau Gwent County Borough Council back in April 2017. So coming home to Ebbw Vale is a full circle, with which I’m very happy; it makes me feel like I’m returning to the beginning once more – hence the title
Crib is a tribute to Prince music and also to my past.
I hope that you can come and join me this Friday together with all of our community groups from the ffin dance faktry, together with guest dancers from Tredegar – Kidz R Us. Tickets are available from the café at The Beaufort or via text 07854 910926
It’s with huge apologies that I write this blog, after what seems like an eternity. Since the company has taken on the running and management of The Beaufort Theatre in April 2017, my life has been rather taken over with operational things other than writing blogs.
Things are at last settling down and we have had an amazing 9 months learning new skills, meeting new people and of course expanding our business.
Next week sees the start of me making my new work with the company dancers: it’s a tribute to the music of one of my favourite artists, the late, great Prince. Please keep posted for a further insight
We will be looking for another dancer to join us later this spring, keep your eyes open for the advert – it could be you joining our team!
We will also be updating this website and introducing you to a new page dedicated to The Beaufort Theatre.
Hope you join us on our 2018 journeys, happy New Year to you all
We are delighted to announce to you that our bid for The Beaufort Theatre has been successful subject to a final executive meeting next Wednesday March 15th 2017.
We will be moving in to the building on April 3rd with a handover from Aneurin Leisure Trust who currently manage the asset on that day.
We are most keen to speak with existing theatre users to chat about how we can continue their use of the theatre space for their annual shows and also very happy to speak with new clients too.
At the start of the calendar year, our attention turns to planning ahead and realising plans and projects that were made last year.
2017 is going to be a year of big changes for FFIN DANCE if all of our plans come to fruition, mainly our bid for Beaufort Theatre and Ballroom. We are hoping to take the venue as a community asset transfer from Blaenau Gwent County Borough Council: if we are successful we will be bringing a whole new range of services to the community and offering training and volunteering opportunities for the public in catering, arts business and admin, customer care, and more. So we will see a bigger and busier dance faktry, supplying much-needed services to our community and creating new jobs too. If you would like more information on how to join us, please get in touch.
The company dancers will be back in the studio in February after a break, and we’ll be finishing off our new full length work, Virago To kick off the Virago season, we will be attending the launch of John F Wakes’s book The Cruel Streets Revisited next Tuesday 17th January at the Norwegian Church in Cardiff. The main character of our work Virago is centred around Minnie McGuire who was the most-arrested person in Victorian Wales; she has her own chapter in John’s book! John and I will be working in collaboration for this project and the book launch sees the start of that journey for 2017
The company will be touring this work from May 2017 and we very much hope you can join us.
I’d like to wish you all a most happy and healthy year ahead, please keep following our progress and sending in your comments and views.