30 April - 19 May 2019



Wed 11 Mar 2015



Tuesday May 19 – Saturday May 30, 2015



(Dublin, Tuesday March 10, 2015) An exciting Festival lies ahead offering an impressive line-up and giving audiences an unmissable combination of talent, raw energy and movement.

“Dance artists are moving like brilliant magpies across tradition, and I hope this programme captures the ‘right now’ of international and Irish dance.” says Julia Carruthers as she announces the final programme in her four year tenure. “This year, our national theatre amplifies the importance of dance with an ambitious programme of three dance performances on the Abbey stage, including leading work from Europe, cutting-edge contemporary flamenco and a major Irish premiere.”


Highlights of the 2015 Dublin Dance Festival include:

  • Liz Roche Company to present first ever commission from an Irish choreographer for the Abbey main stage
  • One of the world’s most celebrated dancers, Flamenco superstar Israel Galván to present hit show
  • Leading figure in contemporary dance Meg Stuart to open the Festival
  • WillFredd Theatre’s world premiere of Jockey starring Emma O’Kane in a dance theatre exploration of the horse racing world
  • Canadian choreographer Sylvain Emard brings 3 dancers and a veteran 81 year old actress to Project Arts Centre in a collection of exquisite dances.
  • Swiss dancer and choreographer Thomas Hauert performs a brand new solo in response to Monteverdi’s Si Dolce e’l tormento, a musical poem of impossible love.
  • 35 cherries meet their sticky end as hapless victims in the hands of German performance artist Eva Meyer - Keller
  • An exciting collaboration with Goethe-Institut Irland resulting in fearless dance from Germany for all tastes and ages on the stages, streets and screens of Dublin.
  • 80 young performers from Dublin Youth Dance Company in an outdoor dance celebration in Grand Canal Dock
  • A magical family season at The Ark demonstrating that ‘never work with animals or children’ doesn’t always apply to choreographers.


Dublin Dance Festival and the Abbey Theatre

A key figure in experimental dance, choreographer Meg Stuart and her company Damaged Goods will officially open the Festival with their compelling new show Built to Last, in their first ever visit to Ireland. Stuart has created a time machine for her five performers. A tidal wave of monumental classical and contemporary music transports them on an epic journey of movement and music through the history of dance and beyond.

One of the world’s most celebrated dancers, living genius Israel Galván will strip flamenco to its bare essence when he brings his award-winning show La Edad de Oro (The Golden Age) to Dublin. A master of contemporary flamenco, Galván has been likened to Astaire (The Financial Times) and Nijinksy (El Mundo) and is joined by live music from fellow artists and brothers David Lagos (vocalist) and Alfredo Lagos (guitar), in La Edad de Oro.

In a breakthrough moment for Irish dance, Dublin Dance Festival and the Abbey Theatre co-present the world premiere of choreographer Liz Roche’s major new work, Bastard Amber. This landmark event marks the first time that an Irish choreographer has been commissioned to create a work for the Abbey Theatre’s main stage. Taking inspiration from W.B. Yeats’ seminal poem Sailing to Byzantium, and the meditative golden paintings of the late Patrick Scott, Roche moves her explorations of the body into the realm of the soul with this provocative piece. “It has been a long-term ambition of mine to premiere the work of an Irish choreographer at the Abbey Theatre.  I am delighted to welcome Liz Roche and Dublin Dance Festival to present this exciting new dance work on our main stage.” said Fiach MacConghail, Abbey Theatre Director. 


WillFredd Theatre

The Festival is delighted to be bringing WillFredd Theatre to dance audiences with Jockey, featuring Irish dancer Emma O’Kane, whose grandfather Philip de Burgh O’Brien was a bloodstock agent and a racing journalist. Dance has previously featured in WillFredd’s productions, and this show directed by Sophie Motley explores the physical relationship between the dancer, the jockey and the Irish thoroughbred horse, with use of original racing footage and commentary in this world premiere at the Samuel Beckett Theatre.


Irish Dance

In addition to Liz Roche and WillFredd, other Irish programme elements include Aoife McAtamney’s improvised performance and interpretation of new compositions by CAOS Ensemble at the National Concert Hall, and Dublin Youth Dance Company’s Linear Flow with 80 young dancers performing contemporary, jazz, hip hop and break dancing at Grand Canal Dock. Sweden’s Maria Nilsson Waller is now Irish-based, and combines compelling choreography with cutting edge live jazz and visuals for an epic journey inspired by Scandinavia’s indigenous people, the Sami. There will be a first look at Emma Martin’s new work A Brief Glimpse of the End and Catherine Young’s Ultima Thule, and an in development presentation of In The Thicket a collaboration between Gavin Kostick, Aedin Cosgrove and choreographer Megan Kennedy.  The Festival will also feature four new Irish works in progress in the Re-Presenting Ireland programme.  

Dancing Wicklow will bring some thrilling dance experiences to Mermaid County Wicklow Arts Centre. There’ll be Mesh, a moving collection by Irish dance makers Nick Bryson, Karen Gleeson and Aisling O’Coineen, in celebration of their 8 month Mermaid residencies; and an outdoor performance on Bray promenade by Swiss choreographer Thomas Hauert, following his Project Arts Centre shows; and WillFredd Theatre will also present a performance of Jockey in the Mermaid.


Moves from Germany

A collaboration between the Festival and the Goethe-Institut Irland, Moves From Germany features a lineup of German performances headlined by Meg Stuart. Eva Meyer-Keller’s Death is certain combines choreography and performance art in the ‘murder’ of 35 cherries; innovative German collective Renegade will present free outdoor shows in Smithfield Square alongside Irish perfomers, and Célestine Hennermann will see 2 dancers bringing animals to life on The Ark stage in Elephant Walk. The Dance on Film programme will screen two films on Germany’s most distinguished contemporary choreographer, Sasha Waltz, to be introduced by their director Brigitte Kramer at the IFI.



One of the most important choreographers on the Canadian dance scene, the acclaimed Sylvain Emard from Montreal, will present a collection of exquisite dances featuring 3 dancers and 81 year old veteran Canadian actress Monique Miller in Fragments – Volume 1. The UK’s Robbie Synge, a descendant of JM Synge, will perform his series of physical experiments which test the push-pull flow of kinetic energy. A triple bill of performances at Project will feature Switzerland’s renowned Thomas Hauert, Belgium’s Meytal Blanaru, and the Italian artist Claudia Catarzi. In a much anticipated double bill at Project, Swiss choreographer Tabea Martin’s work Field sees three people attempt what two people normally do, trying to comprehend what drives us on. BOKKO from The Netherlands by Karel Van Laere and Vanya Rukavina is an adrenalin rush, fast, furious, and fun - and inspired by a South Korean dance craze – sure to bring the festival to a storming finale.


Family Season at The Ark

Barrowland Ballet will present Tiger Tale a chaotic, thrilling and brilliantly funny tale of a tiger who invades a troubled family’s world and helps them to rediscover their wild sides. Dozens of multicoloured buckets will tranform the stage of The Ark as Célestine Hennermann presents Elephant Walk, a production created to delight very little ones as two dancers bring an array of familiar creatures to life on stage.


Moving Conversations

Create, the Bealtaine Festival and the Dublin Dance Festival have invited a panel of artists, philosophers and end of life care specialists to discuss the role of arts practice around the topic, The Art Of Dying. These issues have been raised by Jorge Leon’s powerful film Before We Go featuring Festival artist Meg Stuart.

Shaping Time will be a discussion about dramaturgy for dance led by Gavin Kostick, considering how structural ideas from playwriting could be used in developing new work for dance, alongside improvisations with dancer Emma Fitzgerald.

And Philip Connaughton will delve into his own back catalogue to bare his soul in a roller coaster discussion about the what and why of difficulties with contemporary dance at Dance Uncovered.

The Festival is also offering opportunities to engage with dance via masterclasses, talks, and Fast Track to Dance, an immersive weekend programme for those new audiences who would like to learn more about the art form over an intensive Festival weekend, curated and facilitated by Niamh McCann and Lynnette Moran of Live Collision.




ONLINE from March 11 www.dublindancefestival.ie                

BY PHONE / IN PERSON from May 5 Tel: + 353 1 881 9629

Dublin Dance Festival Box Office @Project Arts Centre, 39 East Essex St, D2

LIMITED EARLY BIRD TICKETS available online until midnight Sunday 29 March




Arts Council/An Chomhairle Ealaíon


Dublin City Council, Fáilte Ireland


RTÉ Supporting the Arts, The Irish Times, RTE LyricFM, Entertainment.ie

Festival Partners: Aareal Bank, Abbey Theatre, Aerowaves, Approach Trade, Bealtaine Festival, Bayer, Create, Canada Council for the Arts, Coiscéim Dance Theatre, Creative Europe programme of the European Union, Creative Scotland, Instituto Cervantes Dublin, Culture Ireland, Dance Ireland, Duncan Grehan & Partners, Embassy of the Federal Republic of Germany Dublin, Fonds Podium Kunsten, Goethe-Institut Irland, Istituto Italiano di Cultura, Kilkenny Arts Festival, Live Collision, Mermaid Arts Centre, National Concert Hall, Nationales Performance Netz, Park Rite, Swiss Arts Council, Québec Government Office London, Conseil des arts et des lettres Québec, the RHA, Siemens,  Volkswagen Bank, Wallonie Bruxelles, Yeats 2015

Venue Partners: Abbey Theatre, DanceHouse, Irish Film Institute, Project Arts Centre, Samuel Beckett Theatre, The Ark, Mermaid Arts Centre, CoisCéim, National Concert Hall, Gate Theatre Lab



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For further information about the Dublin Dance Festival please contact:

caroline@dublindancefestival.ie |: + 353 1 679 0524 | www.dublindancefestival.ie


For further media information please contact:

Christine Monk | monk.christine@gmail.com | 087 675 5329