“Through these tough times we’ve been able to connect through the movement of Dance.” The NDCWales Associates.

National Dance Company Wales’ young Associates premiered their new Dance film titled ‘Now Begin’ at the U Dance Cymru 2021 Digital Dance Day on Saturday 15 May, it was made in collaboration with Artes Mundi, and creatives from across the theatre and dance sector in Wales. The Associates film has now gone on to be selected (along with other dance films) to represent Wales at the National U Dance Showcase 2021.

NDCWales’ Associates meet weekly at the Dance House, Cardiff between September and April through workshops led by a team of NDCWales dancers and leading instructors in dance. Each year the Associates work towards creating a final performance.

Guy O’Donnell, NDCWales’ Learning and Participation Producer said of this years final performance “We were really looking forward to creating a new piece in collaboration with Artes Mundi 9, which would have been a performance at the Artes Mundi exhibtion at National Museum, Cardiff and at the Youth Dance Night event held each year at the Dance House. Fortunately we were able to evolve and adapt this performance for online audiences, which has resulted with us working with some exciting creatives and now results in a special premiere for us at U Dance Cymru 2021.”

‘Now Begin’ is a reflective piece inspired by the current work exhibited at Artes Mundi 9 by Indian artist, Prabhakar Pachpute.  The film portrays young dance artists sharing their desires for change in the world. Inspired by Prabhakar Pachpute’s Artes Mundi exhibition’s themes of protest, these dance artists share their vision for a new beginning through movement and voice. Choreography is by Kokoro Arts and The Associates. Music by Tic Ashfield and Film by Gavin Porter.

march against the lie (IA), Prabhakar Pachpute

You can watch Now Begin below

Below you can watch a Behind-the-Scenes look at the making of ‘Now Begin’ featuring interviews with Prabhakar Pachpute, Kokoro Arts, The Director of Artes Mundi 9, Nigel Prince, Curator of Public Programmes, Artes Mundi 9, Letty Clarke and Associate Dancers Ellie Gale, Heidi Thomas and Harly Videan.

The National Dance Company Wales Associates programmes is currently open for applicants to audition for the term starting in September 2021.

For over a decade, National Dance Company Wales has been nurturing some of the most talented dancers from across Wales and developing their skills

Based at the Dance House, the home of NDCWales, the Associates (ages 14-19 years old) follow a programme created by Faye Tan, our Learning Lead Dancer, with the guidance of our Artistic Team. The Learning Lead Dancer is a member of our Dance company and is a point of contact for the Associates. The LLD gives feedback and support during the programme.

Faye Tan, Learning Lead Dancer, NDCWales Associates.

Over the course of the year, our Associates programme focuses on improving creative and technical skills, along with developing work for performance opportunities that the Company creates for them through the year.

We have a limited number of places available and successful applicants are chosen through a free audition workshop. The audition workshop consists of a contemporary technique class where dancers can show their skills and potential to our Company dance experts.

NDCWales Associates provides high level contemporary training for young dancers. Sessions run on Sundays during term time (Welsh schools’ term timetable) from 10:30am – 12:30pm and are taught by Company Dancers and guest artists.

As part of the Associates programme, members can access;

  • Assessments and guidance from our Learning Lead Dancer.
  • Additional creation and performance opportunities available to those interested.
  • Mentoring opportunities from NDCWales Associate Artists.
  • Access to reduced price tickets at The Dance House and Wales Millennium Centre.
  • Opportunities to access dance activity in collaboration with National Youth Dance Wales.
  • Career Development Talks
  • Work Experience Opportunities

The Associates programme also offers two bursaries, applicants are invitedto apply for the bursary upon acceptance on the programme.

  • With bursary one, you’ll need to pay £202 for all of the weekly contemporary training classes and Dancer Wellbeing Days. The optional Creation Week package will cost an extra £77. (Total amount payable, £279).
  • With bursary two, you’ll need to pay £50 for all of the weekly contemporary training classes and the Dancer Wellbeing Days. The optional Creation Week package will cost an extra £20. (Total amount payable, £60).

You can apply to audition at the link below, applications close on Friday the 4th June. Auditions take place on Saturday the 10 July and Sunday the 11th July. Applicants will audition in small groups for approximately 150 minutes.


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