Aerial Dance Projects
The aerial work began in 1999 with a film project using an antique flying harness borrowed from the local theatre!! Since then the work has been refined and reinvented using a range of up-to-date climbing equipment.
Rachel has led a series of residential training events, for adults, children and family groups. She has also directed a number of touring productions working with a range of performers and artists. The principles of aerial work remain the same but techniques are adapted to suit individual needs. There has yet to be somebody who wishes to fly but cannot access the opportunity. The equipment size ranges from XXS to XXXL!
Each workshop begins with a physical warm-up and introduction to the equipment and safety considerations. This is followed by getting 'onto the ropes' either using harnesses or fabric cocoons depending on body types.
Rachel working on a piece at Scottish Opera
Basic techniques of swinging and stopping are gradually introduced and developed with turning, tipping and inversion. Participants are encouraged to use their hands and feet to work with the floor or a partner and to play with gravity.
The rope always wants to get back to its centre-point and the aerial work uses this, pulling, pushing, resisting and yielding but never fighting!
Once participants have gained confidence and control they can move onto faster and slower, higher and bigger moves. We take creative risks NOT physical risks, challenging choreographic ideas and exploring new physical potential but always maintaining safe practice.
Aerial Workshops in Malvern
Opening of European Wheelchair
Nine young dancers from Dancefest’s youth dance companies are taking part in a new aerial dance project with EVERYBODY DANCE.
The five male and four female dancers aged 13 to 30 were working to create a performance for the spectacular opening ceremony of the European Wheelchair Basketball Championships at Worcester Arena on Friday 28 August, which will saw the continent’s greatest teams descend on the city to play for both the European title and their place at the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games.
The opening ceremony took place on Friday 28th August in front of TV cameras, national and international press and a royal visit.
Some community work in Germany in the summer of 2015.
Dance Piece in the Cathedral
As part of the Voices and Visions project, Rachel choreographed an aerial piece for four young students who had never been on a rope before! They were amazing and the Cathedral looked beautiful as they performed "Angels in the Architecture" on ropes hanging from the balustrades.
For more pics of the rehearsal and the performance, click here.
Produced by EVERYBODY DANCE with the support of Worcester County Council for Voices and Visions.
NATIONAL STAR CENTRE
We've been working at NSC over the past 15 months helping them to develop their own in-house aerial dance programme. There's been lots of exciting progress with staff and students building their confidence and skills. Sarah Gardiner leads the dance programme at NSC and has put lots of energy into this new initiative. We look forward to leading some more workshops for them in 2014.
We worked with Nicola Winstanley and Sarah Nadin of Dashyline on an inspirational project called Unearthed. The project included a host of workshops and events with everyBODY dance creating a new aerial work for the unveiling ceremony of the Unearthed sculpture. Find out more about this remarkable humanitarian act by North Staffordshire miners in World War 2 through this stunning set of videos.
Local dancers Clare Reynolds, Anna Simpson, James Bartley and Sam Shaw with Rachel just before the performance at the City centre bus station on Saturday 26th October.
And airborne -
Jack and Sarah loved their day!
**For an album of photos of the move out event, please click here**.
Aerial O With Scottish Opera
We headed up the M6 to Glasgow, trailer with rig in tow. We’d done a similar project last year with Scottish Opera and Dirty Feet but, with a few changes to the artist team and participant groups, this year was a bit of an unknown.
Five slightly chaotic days later, a cast of 38 performed a fabulous piece of aerial dance opera based on the theme of friendship, with original songs, design and choreography all created by the cast.
But the performances were really only a small part of the project; the week was full of heart-warming, spine-tingling moments between all the participants, meeting, supporting, challenging and entertaining each other in this creatively inclusive project.