Episode 5 - Benjamin Zephaniah (a tribute)
Why Dance Matters
by Royal Academy of Dance
2M ago
In this episode of Why Dance Matters, we revisit a conversation from October 2022, in tribute to the poet, performer and activist Benjamin Zephaniah, who died earlier this month. As a performance poet he gave words a glorious physical form, his rhythms dancing from line to line. He had also provided a voiceover for Rambert’s dance version of the hit tv series Peaky Blinders. In our conversation, Benjamin was impressively candid about his journey, richly reflective about poetry, and also emotionally generous – unexpectedly moved when speaking about the generations of readers who have been touch ..read more
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Episode 3 - Pam Tanowitz
Why Dance Matters
by Royal Academy of Dance
3M ago
Pam Tanowitz is now an in-demand choreographer – but her career has followed a unique trajectory. For years, she and her company had an under-the-radar following in New York, but only recently did she win wider attention. A work set to TS Eliot’s 4 Quartets led to international tours and commissions for the Royal Ballet and New York City Ballet. Before that happened she worked and worked: at dance, but also unglamorous admin jobs. When we met at the Barbican for the London premiere of her Song of Songs, she talked about giving hope to all the late bloomers.   Pam Tanowitz has delineated h ..read more
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Episode 2 - Jakob Wheway Hughes
Why Dance Matters
by Royal Academy of Dance
3M ago
Jakob Wheway Hughes was gold medallist at the Royal Academy of Dance’s Margot Fonteyn International Ballet Competition 2023. The Fonteyn took place at His Majesty’s Theatre in London, the opulent home of Phantom of the Opera. Jakob performed a new solo and a bravura classical variation, and seemed strikingly at ease on stage, communicating his dance to the packed audience. It was no surprise that Dame Darcey Bussell, the RAD President, presented him with the gold medal. Jakob,16, who trains at Tring Park School tells us why dance matters to him. Find out more about the work of the RAD Follow ..read more
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Episode 4 - Ana Maria Campos
Why Dance Matters
by Royal Academy of Dance
1y ago
Ana Maria Campos is a Royal Academy of Dance teacher from Brazil. She has travelled widely and lived in several different countries – dance and dance teaching are wonderfully portable skills. As an RAD examiner, she also visits dance schools all over the world – how does she calm the nerves of young dancers and help them give their best? And as someone who has dedicated their career to dance and helping others dance, she will know better than most why dance matters.   Ana Maria Campos grew up in Brazil, training as a dancer with Ilara Lopes and Jorge Pena. She graduated as a teacher from ..read more
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Episode 4- Charlotte Edmonds
Why Dance Matters
by Royal Academy of Dance
1y ago
Charlotte Edmonds   Unusually, Charlotte Edmonds began her career as a professional choreographer while still a teenager. The RAD spotted her talent for making dance when she was just 18: she was Commissioned Choreographer for the RAD’s Genée International Ballet Competition (now named The Fonteyn) in 2015, and also became The Royal Ballet’s inaugural young choreographer. She continues to navigate a varied freelance career, often making her own creative opportunities.   About Charlotte Edmonds   Charlotte Edmonds is a choreographer, dancer and filmmaker. In 2013 she received her ..read more
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Episode 3- Zack Frongillo
Why Dance Matters
by Royal Academy of Dance
1y ago
Zack Frongillo   The Savannah Bananas is not what you might expect from a US baseball team; players break off to twerk, or do a TikTok challenge, and the Entertainment Director, Zack Frongillo, is a trained classical dancer. We love seeing dance sneak into unexpected places. In this episode, we hear from Zack who tells us how the Savannah Bananas in Georgia are making a double play with dance and baseball, and bringing more fun to their fans in the process. If you thought the team might be a stranger to dance breaks and pirouettes, then think again. Let’s play ball…   About Zack Fron ..read more
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Episode 2- Dame Monica Mason
Why Dance Matters
by Royal Academy of Dance
1y ago
Dame Monica Mason   May you live in interesting times may be an ancient curse, but Monica Mason has voyaged through some very interesting times and places. She spent most of her career at The Royal Ballet, eventually as its artistic director – but was born in South Africa, moving to London in the 1950s to ignite her astonishing career. She later toured through segregated America, behind the Iron Curtain, and to Cuba and China. As a Vice-President at the RAD she was a key figure in realising its dream of a new home, so is perfectly placed to discuss what it means to a dancer to feel at hom ..read more
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Episode 1- Akram Khan
Why Dance Matters
by Royal Academy of Dance
1y ago
The opening guest in the new series of Why Dance Matters is a star among contemporary dance artists. Akram Khan is a dancer, choreographer, director and dreamer, whose work has shaped the international landscape of dance. He came to attention early as a virtuoso in kathak, the Indian classical dance form, and at 13 appeared in Peter Brook’s landmark Mahabharata. His own work explores kathak, contemporary dance and increasingly classical ballet, driving deep roots into myth and his own personal story – and our conversation is heartfelt and thoughtful, spiralling off in unexpected directions. &n ..read more
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Episode 5 - Hofesh Shechter
Why Dance Matters
by Royal Academy of Dance
2y ago
Twenty years ago, in the early hours of new year’s day, a young artist tumbled off the Eurostar, ready to begin a new life in London. Hofesh Shechter grew up in Israel but had been living in Paris, and considered making dance as a showcase for his music. Instead, his unmistakable dance pieces – visceral and propulsive, witty and vulnerable – have made him one of the most distinctive modern choreographers, bringing the energy of a gig to often solemn contemporary dance. Political Mother, the title of perhaps his best-known piece, suggests how Hofesh’s work can feel both public and private. But ..read more
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Episode 1 - Carlos Acosta
Why Dance Matters
by Royal Academy of Dance
2y ago
Carlos Acosta has an electric connection to audiences – a combination of elegance, fire and rare charisma. Starting life in one of Havana’s poorest neighbourhoods, the Cuban dancer became a favourite at The Royal Ballet and the Bolshoi. His inspirational effect has been widely recognised – including, in 2018, by the RAD’s Queen Elizabeth II Coronation Award. He now leads his own contemporary company, Acosta Danza, and is director of Birmingham Royal Ballet (BRB). He describes how he came to love ballet, keeping motivated through the pandemic and a new partnership between BRB and the RAD, desig ..read more
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