Family Weekend, Sadler’s Wells’ annual two-day festival of family-friendly events, was back on Friday 14 & Saturday 15 April, taking over the theatre building and offering something for all ages with fun activities, arts & crafts and workshops. These complemented Aracaladanza’s Vuelos on the Sadler’s Wells stage, inspired by Leonardo da Vinci’s quest to make man fly. Suitable for ages five and over, Family Weekend continued to see the theatre transformed into a magical space for children and their families as an unmissable jam-packed day out.
Following successful tours in 2015 and 2016, Flamenco Edition returns in 2017 with the Ana Morales Flamenco Company. Touring to more venues than ever before and following the success of previous tours – Jesus Fernandez in 2015 and Olga Pericet in 2016 – Flamenco Edition 2017 presents Ana Morales Flamenco Company in Reunión – a brand new show for the UK, touring to Newcastle, Birmingham, Derby, Nottingham and Bournemouth between 9–17 May.
The Victoria and Albert Museum and Royal College of Art are set to launch a new performing arts-led archive course, based at the V&A’s theatre collections. It is a new optional strand of the V&A and Royal College of Art’s existing 15 month MA programme on the history of design, and students will be able to dedicate their entire curriculum to performance.
Liverpool is set to install the UK’s first revolving theatre, as part of plans to revitalise Liverpool’s Ten Streets dockland area into a creative hub for arts and technology organisations. The ‘stage-around theatre’, in which seats rotate to face different stages, will be the first of its kind in the UK, as part of ambitious plans for a new creative quarter that officials hope could create thousands of jobs in Liverpool.
MPs have called for a ban on unpaid internships, maintaining that they penalise working-class young people who cannot spend long periods of time working for free in a bid to get into their chosen career. Instead, more employers should also consider contextual recruitment, according to a report by members of the all-party parliamentary group (APPG) on social mobility. Under this system, firms are required to consider a candidate’s achievements in the context of their underprivileged background.
Central School of Ballet recently unveiled its plans to move to bespoke new premises on London’s South Bank, a flourishing arts community. The new building is planned for completion in the academic year 2018/2019. The aim is to become a hub for a dynamic dance community, combining excellence in dance training – for those aiming for a professional career – with general dance classes and London outreach projects. As a world-leading professional dance training organisation and part of the renowned Conservatoire for Dance and Drama, this is an exciting time for Central School of Ballet.
Trans Creative, a trans-led theatre company backed by Arts Council England, recently launched at Contact Manchester’s annual LGBT arts festival. It aims to become an arts hub for the transgender community in the North of England, also providing creative and employment opportunities.
The New Musical Development Collective, a new organisation to nurture emerging musical theatre artists, is being launched, partnering with Theatre Royal Stratford East. The organisation will focus on the development of British musicals and musical theatre artists, through supporting four new musical projects and eight artists over the course of a year. The group will therefore be in residence at Theatre Royal Stratford East for one year from March.
Established in 2014, Sadler’s Wells’ Elixir Festival is a unique celebration of lifelong creativity, which returns this year from 23–27 June. The festival will celebrate older dancers with this inspirational festival, which features five days of performances, workshops and events throughout the theatre. It was set up to recognise the contribution that older artists make, dissolve assumptions about what older people can and want to do, shine a spotlight on the diversity of dance practice and question what is next for the art form.
It may not sound so, but it is possible to encourage non-dancing teenage boys to be enthusiastic about the art form. Despite their many inhibitions and reservations, maybe even fear, there is sure to be a route to the dance studio for those young people.