Newtownards Summer Flash Mob

Conway Square in Newtownards was the venue as 200 children joined together in a flashmob on 7th August to raise awareness of the effects of single-use plastics. Our artistic director Mags Byrne worked alongside dance artist Ciarán Grey delivering a series of workshops in the run-up to the event.

During the 20-minute performance, the children filled the square with protest chants and dance. They were joined by BEATNDRUM Samba Band and Professor Plastic Not Fantastic in highlighting key plastic pollution facts and figures.

This event was part of Ards and North Down Borough Council’s summer scheme programme and funded by the council’s Recycling Community Investment Fund (RCIF).

Belfast Boys Share Their Work in Crescent Arts Centre

Belfast Boys finished their term with a sharing for parents and friends in the David Hill Studio at The Crescent Arts Centre on 22nd June.

The strong core of 10 performed their new dance piece choreographed by the boys with Sean O’Neill and Tommy Bell.

Sutemos Delight Crowds in Cookstown Summer Carnival

Sutemos took part in Cookstown Summer Carnival on Friday 28th June. It proved to be a delightful way to kick off the summer as the young dancers performed to a joyous crowd – with fantastic drummers helping to keep everyone’s feet dancing throughout.

Belfast City Council Draft Cultural Strategy Open for Consultation

Deadline for Feedback: Wednesday 10 July 2019
Read the draft cultural strategy here
Click here to provide feedback

Belfast City Council have launched their draft Cultural strategy for 2020- 2030 and the plan is open for feedback until 10th July 2019.

This 10-year cultural strategy has been developed following thousands of conversations that have taken place since 2017 as part of an ongoing public engagement programme. This strategy is also a consolidation of the foundation, commitments and achievements of several preceding strategies and frameworks.  It commits the city to facilitating a new integrated phase of culture-led development, with the individual citizen at the heart of this process.

The strategy presents the overall approach, themes and priorities for integrated cultural development over a ten year period.

You can have your say on the strategy by clicking here.

DU Dance (NI) Features in Mid Ulster District Council Good Relations Showcase

DU Dance (NI) featured in Mid Ulster District Council’s first ever Good Relations showcase on 18th June 2019. The event, which took place in the Glenavon Hotel in Cookstown, brought together a number of organisations that work with the Council to deliver invaluable programmes to the community.

Our dance film ‘Relocate’ – an intercultural project exploring themes of migration and settlement – was featured as part of the showcase, and our artistic director Mags Byrne was in attendance to discuss the work we do.

Click here to read more about ‘Relocate’.

Alternative Energies and Alternatives Delight Audience at Flowerfield

Flowerfield Arts Centre was the setting as Alternatives and Alternative Energies treated a ninety strong audience to a celebration of dance on 24th May.

Aaron Callan, chair of Causeway Coast & Glens Borough Council’s Leisure and Development Committee, provided the opening address. The evening featured a performance of ‘Abstraction’ by Alternative Energies, and  a piece titled ‘Dance Through the Ages’ – as well as a screening of the short film ‘Not Alone’. The programme concluded with a joint performance from Alternative Energies and Alternatives.

Thanks to Causeway Coast & Glens Borough Council, in particular Desima Connolly, for hosting this event and for their continued support throughout the year.

Project funding provided by Esmeé Fairbairn Foundation.

‘Relocate’ Screening at The Junction in Dungannon

On Saturday 18th May The Junction in Dungannon hosted the latest screening of ‘Relocate’. This follows on from the film’s premiere in April.

‘Relocate’ is a dance film project from Sutemos and Suteminis bringing together children and adults from the traditional communities within Dungannon and newcomer children and adults. The project was supported by both Dungannon Youth Resource Centre and South Tyrone Empowerment Programme (STEP).

The sixty strong audience – including some of the young participants and their teachers – was delighted and moved in equal measure by the film and its themes of migration and settlement.

Thanks to our funders:

DU Dance (NI) Principal Funder: Arts Council of Northern Ireland
BBC Children in Need
Community Relations Council
This project has been supported by The Executive Office funded through its District Council Good Relations Program
in partnership with Mid Ulster District Council

DU Dance (NI) to Feature in Short Film Showcase

DU Dance (NI)’s short film work will be showcased as part of the Northern Ireland Mental Health Arts Festival.

On Sunday 19th May at 4pm the Strand Arts Centre will screen a collection of shorts films by John Deery, DU Dance (NI) and McGill University in Montréal. The event will also feature a panel discussion.

For more information about the event, click here.

About Northern Ireland Mental Health Arts Festival

NIMHAF is a festival highlighting mental health by showcasing arts and film events across Northern Ireland. The festival runs from 6th-31st May 2019.

Click here to find out more.

Primary Schools Dance Festival 2019

Our 11th annual Primary Schools Dance Festival took place at Belvoir Players Theatre on 15th & 16th May 2019.  The festival offers children of primary school age the opportunity to perform in an exciting, supportive, non-competitive context. It is open to any style of dance and all levels.

158 children aged 4-11 performed to a combined audience of more than 270.

During the the festival pupils and teachers were able to share their work with other schools in a professional theatre setting.

We were also delighted to invite Palmira Rendilheiro, from Cape Town, South Africa as our special guest artist for the second year in a row. Palmira performed a fusion of contemporary dance and jazz which delighted the audience.

Paula Bittles of George Best Belfast City Airport presented certificates to the children following their performances.

Well done to all the young dancers, their teachers, parents, support staff, and the enthusiastic audience.

Special Thanks

We would like to extend a special thanks to George Best Belfast City Airport Community Fund for providing funding for this project.

DU Dance (NI) Featured in Research Article

DU Dance (NI)’s ‘Heroes on the Hill’ project is the subject of an academic research article by Katharine Scrantom and Katrina McLaughlin. The aim of this study was to investigate the psychosocial benefits of the project as an example of a cross-community, intercultural dance programme for youth in Northern Ireland.

The study concludes that “Arts-based programmes like Heroes on the Hill should not be underestimated in their dynamic ability to address such complex issues; in fact, they must be considered crucial in promoting integration, diversity, and inclusion in Northern Ireland.”

Click here to read the research article in full.

About ‘Heroes on the Hill’

‘Heroes on the Hill’ was an intercultural dance and drumming project involving schools and community groups and delivered in partnership with STEP (South Tyrone Empowerment Project).

For more information about ‘Heroes on the Hill’ click here.