We are auditioning

FFIN DANCE Crib

FFIN DANCE Crib

We are looking for a new dancer, male or female, to join the company for the creation of a new work and future projects. The audition will take place on Saturday 7 April 201812-5pm at The Beaufort Theatre, Beaufort Hill, Ebbw Vale, Gwent, Wales NP23 5QQ.

The audition will involve a contemporary technique class, repertoire from our new work Crib,  a creative session and an opportunity to meet and discuss the role with the company. All dancers will be required for the whole session.

Please note, FFIN DANCE is a project-based company, best suited for self-employed artists. All projects are paid. For more information about the company, including commitment and fees, please email info@ffindance.co.uk
To apply, please email info@ffindance.co.uk with your CV and a link to online video footage of you dancing by 5pm on Friday 16 March 2018. This audition is by invitation only and you will be informed if you have been successful by Saturday 24 March 2018.
You must have a minimum of 3 years professional dance training, excellent contemporary dance technique and creative skills. Experience and a keen interest in teaching and working with community dancers is desirable.

Before applying, it is important to understand that the majority of company rehearsals and activities take place in residence at The Beaufort Theatre, Ebbw Vale. FFIN DANCE is unable to provide accommodation and travel expenses and therefore, this role is best suited to dancers who have a base in South Wales and/or have their own transport.

The philosophy underpinning the work that FFIN DANCE produces is centred around quality and innovation. Artistic Director, Sue Lewis, believes in collaborating with her dancers, and the process of making new work is always challenging and of equal importance as the product. Use of music plays a huge part in the company repertoire, as well as a strong emphasis on physicality and technical virtuosity. Alongside the professional company, FFIN DANCE runs an established education and outreach programme, the FFIN DANCE FAKTRY with a series of regular childrens and youth classes, summer schools, professional intensives and one-off projects with schools and community groups.

If you are interested in seeing the company perform before auditioning, the premiere of our new work Crib will take place at The Beaufort Theatre on Friday 6 April 2018 alongside performances from our community groups. For more information, visit www.ffindance.co.uk/the-beaufort-theatre

www.ffindance.co.uk | Facebook: @ffindancecompany | Twitter: @FFINDANCE | Instagram: ffindance

 

Edinburgh bound

cropped-ifringebanner.pngWith just over a week to go before the company heads north, there’s a lot of lists to write, packing to be done, rehearsals and all sorts of things to think about.

 

We have been busy writing press releases and organising our marketing for one of the most competitive and exciting fringe festivals in the world.
viragozooMy piece Virago will be programmed by Zoo Venues (The Sanctuary Venue 124 ) from August 13th – 19th at 7.45pm.  Tickets here

 

We have previewed the piece in London and at our base back here in Wales in various forms and guises, the latter being an interactive performance where the audience was invited to be the jury and decide upon Minnie McGuire’s fate: the jury declared her “not guilty”.  The audience joined in with a final reel celebrating Minnie’s innocence.

 

 

 

Some of the audience feedback:
” there but for the grace of God go I!”

“I have no doubt that Virago will go down a storm at The Fringe.  The story is compelling and the interpretation is excellent”

“Brilliant interpretation in dance, well-executed, enjoyed every minute of it.  Good luck in Edinburgh!”

Keep posted for more of our travel news, get the iFringe app on your phone and book into our show, and share our posts.  Many thanks for your support!

sue lewis

 

Finishing off

102-a4Just touching base after what was a very busy and enjoyable week here at FFIN DANCE. The main goal of our most recent week in the studio was to finish the creation period of Sue’s new work Virago. Not only was this achieved but we also had the pleasure of spending an afternoon with the brilliant Paul Trask, our photographer as well as some exciting conversations about the next steps for the company.

The creation of Virago has been a very special and personal process that I believe has brought the company firmly together ahead of our next performances. The story of Minnie McGuire along with the social issues it relates to have really pulled on our heart strings as well as conjured up many different images and thoughts that have inspired our creative work in the studio. The movement feels very honest and physically challenging to dance and that combined with the way Sue has stitched the work together makes for something that I’m sure will be very exciting to watch. Beyond the movement is a variety of different music as well as voiceovers and there will be plenty more to please the eye including our striking set and lighting designs. I think I speak for all the dancers when I say we can’t wait to share it with our existing audiences as well as with new ones!

For the first part of the week we were joined by Rochelle who is on work placement from Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance. Rochelle joined us for company class as well as observing our (sometimes chaotic) rehearsal process! With all the current company dancers having spent some of their training at Trinity Laban, it was lovely to welcome Rochelle and we hope she enjoyed her time getting a taste of how a small professional dance company works.

The week was also underpinned by the looming result of our bid to become the new leaseholders of Beaufort Theatre & Ballroom, an exciting prospect that could bring in so many more opportunities for the company and the surrounding community.

Watch this space for more information about all that is FFIN DANCE!

Julian x

Virago’s ready to go

Berry's BarWe have just spent the past week finishing off our new work Virago.  A productive and action-packed week including our new season photo shoot with Paul Trask, a work-placement by a lovely dance student from Trinity Laban Conservatoire, an exciting glimpse at our new logo and marketing strap lines designed by company dancer Julian and of course the underlying tension of just under a week to go before we hear about our bid for Beaufort Theatre.
I’m thrilled with Virago, it’s a tale of social injustice: although inspired by Minnie McGuire the most arrested woman in Victorian Wales, its social issues are as relevant today as back then.

 

Threaded through the work are references to the Irish Holocaust, extreme poverty in Ireland and Wales, alcohol abuse, immigration and prostitution.

We are most fortunate to be working alongside author John F Wake whose book The Cruel Streets Revisited has inspired Virago, and who has written the lyrics for the cover song for our work.

The song is composed and performed by Lorraine King especially for us, we hope you love it as much as we do.

So, on to another week, hoping to hear that we have become the new lease holders of The Beaufort Theatre and Ballroom.  More news soon.

sue lewis

 

 

Moving On

As the company moves on into its second decade, we have plans to expand in a variety of different ways, one of which includes the expansion of our Board of Trustees.
We are delighted that Brigadier Robert Aitken CBE has joined us as Patron and Andrew Tuggey CBE is our Company Champion.

Here’s a little more about them:

Brigadier Robert Aitken CBE

Brigadier Robert Aitken CBE

Brigadier Aitken is currently Lord Lieutenant of Gwent and has lived in Gwent since childhood.  Following a choral scholarship to Oxford, Brigadier Aitken was commissioned in the Royal Regiment of Wales. He had a distinguished military career lasting 34 years during which time he was awarded a CBE.
He is currently the Director of Music in Hospitals Cymru/Wales, a charity that provides live music events in healthcare settings. He is an Officer of the Order of St John Cymru, and chairman of 3 military charitable trusts. He is also Honorary Colonel of Gwent and Powys Army Cadet Force.

 

 

 

 

 

Andrew Tuggey CBE

Andrew Tuggey CBE

Andrew Tuggey CBE is Commonwealth Parliamentary Association UK’s Chief Executive & Secretary; he also is Secretary of the CPA British Islands & Mediterranean Region. Highly experienced in international outreach, parliamentary strengthening and parliamentary diplomacy, he served in the Army prior to his current appointment, latterly as a Defence diplomat with the FCO. Andrew has a BSc (Eng) and speaks French, German, Malay and Nepalese. He served as High Sheriff of Gwent and is currently a Vice Lord Lieutenant (VLL) in Gwent

We are seeking offers from the community for other Trustees, please contact us by e mail info@ffindance.co.uk
More of our new ventures to follow.

sue lewis

 

A fond farewell

Missing Pages Photo Paul Trask

Missing Pages
Photo Paul Trask

It seems fitting somehow to say “cheerio” to our senior dancer Effie, after such a successful run of events to celebrate our 10th anniversary season. Our season will continue into the spring of 2017 with new dancer Sarah joining Catrin, Natasha and Julian, whilst Effie is moving on to pastures new.
Effie has been with the company for 5 years, having met us at our Winter Intensives.  We were so impressed with her that we offered her a place to learn some of Gary Lambert’s work for the company, to replace Lucille Tappa in Synapsequence.

Effie has created and danced many lovely roles for the company over the years, but I think it was Missing Pages, that really brought out her lyricism and technique more than any other.

Effie has been a wonderful workshop leader and teacher too, with her quirky ways of motivating children and young people; especially noteworthy is her “bananas of the world unite” and her numerical jogging pattern warm ups. We will miss her zany music in professional class, Dr Who will never be the same again!

The image by Paul Trask that is featured above, carries a story, I’m sure that Effie won’t mind me sharing it.  The company was in Llanhilleth Wales, shooting some images for our tour Inspired: Paul wanted to shoot somewhere local and out of the studio.  This obviously caused a bit of a stir in the village and gathered quite a lot of spectators who were generally supportive and also inquisitive. After a little while, word got around and we were hailed with some children shouting “come over here boys, there’s a stripper down by the railway station” The photo above and some others too, were the culprits of this mistaken identity. We laughed about that one for quite a time, as you can imagine.

So finally it’s time to say a very fond farewell.  We wish Effie well in her future pursuits and will miss her tremendously as a wonderful dancer and warm, faithful friend.  Please keep in touch.

sue lewis

Decisive Moments

Image Paul Trask

Image Paul Trask

FFIN DANCE would like to offer 2 dancers who have undertaken professional dance training or are currently still in training an opportunity to participate in Decisive Moments August 29th – September 2nd 2016

This is a project that the company is rolling out in partnership with Aneurin Leisure Arts Development and is facilitated by Ann Sholem and Roy Campbell-Moore and will be held at The Met in Abertillery from 10.30 am – 5pm each day

The dance project will include class teaching sessions, creative workshops, choreography sessions and performances, along with joint sessions with photographers to assess and be inspired by the material they are generating. The ambition is to give dancers a broader appreciation of how different artforms work collaboratively. There will be combined showings of work between dancers and photographers, followed by discussions regarding artistic and technical outcomes. Dance workshops will stress the importance of creating ‘Decisive Moments’ in space and time and each residency concludes with performances for public and photo exhibitions of the participants’ work.

The ambition for Decisive Moments (dance) is to enable dancers to achieve greater skills and a higher level of artistic creativity, empowering them to move into new territory with their work. The project intends to change perceptions of critical analysis, enlarge artistic imaginations and how to become involved in presenting work to the general public.

Each dancer will be expected to contribute to appraising the development of the work as it progresses and presenting a confident face to the world.

Each dancer needs:

  1. Enthusiasm
  2. Skills and abilities that match the general skill level of the group of dancers. Mixing beginners and advanced level dancers is frustrating. No disrespect to either… it’s a simple fact of life
  3. Dance practice clothing appropriate to the working situation. Willing to work both in bare feet and in trainers
  4. Time management skills. Being on time and being available for all the dance sessions is vital for effective group dynamics to work well
  5. Curiosity and energy

If you are interested in putting yourself forward for consideration please e mail info@ffindance.co.uk or text 07854 910926 by 5th August 2016 5pm
*There is no participation fee for this project

Women GOLive

FFIN DANCE Image Paul Trask

FFIN DANCE
Image Paul Trask

The next performance of our current tour - t e n – takes place this coming week at Oxford’s Old Fire Station Arts Centre.
Women GOLive is curated by Dance Critic Donald Hutera and features work by women choreographers, he states “men are welcome too”
We will be performing Memoir and Duetti on Friday 15th July at 7.30pm and Memoir and True on Saturday 16th July at 7.30pm

We hope you can join us, here’s the link for details and how to book tickets

Outreach at its most rewarding

2 of our youngest dancers at Desire To Dance Brynmawr

2 of our youngest dancers at Desire To Dance Brynmawr

The past month has been truly rewarding with our dance faktry projects running concurrently at Brynmawr and Tredegar. Our Desire To Dance Project successfully ran at Tredegar and London last season; together with generous funding from Tai Calon Community Housing, we ran a similar project in Brynmawr for the children of the community in that area. They worked for 4 intensive full days over 2 weekends with Effie, Catrin, Louis and Cariad and produced a lovely piece of work focussing on touch and skin.

At Tredegar Comprehensive School Catrin, Julian and Louis worked with a group of young Performing Arts students to create a piece of work that was choreographed to music written by GCSE Music students from the school. 2 intense evenings from 3.30pm – 8pm were spent making the work.  We facilitated this project with funding from a legacy given to Arts Development at Aneurin Leisure, kindly donated to give young people experience with music and theatre.

The 2 pieces were shown to friends and family at the Annual Dance Showcase organised by Aneurin Leisure Arts Development at The Met Theatre in Abertillery, our home theatre.

Desire To Dance Brynmawr

Desire To Dance Brynmawr

The experiences gained by the children and young people were many, but I think the most valuable things learnt were working together to produce a high quality product and digging dip and finding inner strength especially when exhausted!  Of many evaluations from the project participants who were all wowed by their achievements was a comment to Catrin – “you’ve changed my life” – a lump comes into my throat as I write.

Moving on then, we turn our thoughts to our next outreach project, the Summer Dance School. More about that very soon, please feel free to pass on this flyer to all young people who you think may benefit ..

summer school 16

 

 

 

 

 

 

sue lewis

All go

FFIN DANCE Image Paul Trask

FFIN DANCE
Image Paul Trask

So it’s all GO this week in the South Wales valleys. Fellow company dancer, Catrin and I arrived Monday afternoon ready to lead our first workshops passing on the movement material and ideas behind the t e n Tour 2016 to the local community. We had 4 workshops happening across the evening for a variety of ages from infants to seniors from groups including Ffin Infants & Juniors, Ffin Youth Dance Company and Toppers School of Dance & Drama.

The young dancers had an amazing time, showing great energy, enthusiasm and interest in the workshop content. We were also delighted to be joined by Sarah Lee Pryke who will be joining FFIN DANCE later in the summer. Sarah has already begun learning and researching our new repertoire and assisted Catrin and Julian to deliver yesterday’s workshops.
With the première of our new dance works fast approaching, the real work is yet to begin. Tuesday has been a day of admin, planning, costume fitting and photoshopping – not to mention a slice of Grandma’s fruit cake and a cheeky glass of wine!
We’re back in the studio today for some last minute rehearsals and fine tuning. We also have more community workshops and are leading professional company class on Thursday and Friday. This Friday night will be my first full-length performance with FFIN DANCE and I’m especially excited as it marks the beginning of the 10th anniversary celebrations for the company. It’s been such a pleasure to work with Sue and my fellow performers Catrin, Effie and Natasha so far and I can’t wait to share the stage with them.

If you haven’t yet booked your tickets for the show, we’d love to see you there!

t e n poster FinalFriday 20th May, 7:30pm – The Met, Abertillery – tickets are £8/£6, call the box office on 01495 355800 to book

Don’t forget to follow us on Facebook, Twitter and our website for updates on our future performances and projects.

Thanks, Julian