Studio Sessions

Presented in partnership with Dance Umbrella and Dance4

Studio Sessions
Studio Session 1: Flora Fauna Project | Praying Positions/Metamorphosis

Studio Sessions returns as part of Dance Umbrella in 2020 as twelve UK and Ireland based artists / companies share a live stream presentation of a work in progress. Connecting national and international industry professionals with creatives, these three informal presentations enable presenters, funders and supporters to see work well before it hits the stage.

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Studio Session 1: THE BELFAST ENSEMBLE | Music-Theatre works 2019-20
Studio Session 1: THE BELFAST ENSEMBLE | Music-Theatre works 2019-20
Studio Session 1: Mufutau Yusuf | Pidgin
Studio Session 1: Mufutau Yusuf | Pidgin
Studio Session 1: Flora Fauna Project | Praying Positions/Metamorphosis (Photo: Stace Gill)
Studio Session 1: Flora Fauna Project | Praying Positions/Metamorphosis (Photo: Stace Gill)
Studio Session 1: Aoife McAtamney | Slumber (Photo: Jose Miguel Jimenez)
Studio Session 1: Aoife McAtamney | Slumber (Photo: Jose Miguel Jimenez)

Dance Umbrella, Dance4 and Dublin Dance Festival are delighted to present a new series of Studio Sessions, the informal platform connecting UK & Ireland-based choreographers to national and international programmers and presenters. This year’s Studio Sessions series will take place virtually and each partner has invited an artist to select the work being shared – Oona Doherty for Dublin Dance Festival, Lucy Suggate for Dance4 and Seeta Patel for Dance Umbrella.


Friday 13 November 2020, 2pm
Presented in partnership Dublin Dance Festival, curated by Oona Doherty

Mufutau Yusuf | Pidgin
A personal take on his own upbringing in Nigeria and Ireland, Pidgin is a solo (improvisation) on the hybridity of identity

THE BELFAST ENSEMBLE | Music-Theatre works 2019-20
A look at the award-winning music-theatre/opera work of the company led by Artistic Director Conor Mitchell, including 'Abomination: a DUP opera'.

Flora Fauna Project | Praying Positions/Metamorphosis
A dance solo by Maria Nilsson Waller looking at the process of change and evolution

Aoife McAtamney | Slumber
A short film working with movement, music and the camera to create visual seeds for the forthcoming 2021 transdisciplinary film ‘My Body Is My Home’


Friday 20 November 2020, 2pm
Presented in Partnership with Dance4, curated by Lucy Suggate

Farah Saleh | PAST -inuous
An interactive dance video exploring the future of the Palestinian refugee cause and its connection to the current global refugee condition Learn more

Eve Stainton | Rubby Sucky Forge

A live performance researching the emotional edges of metal, sequences of conflict and the psychedelic horror of being in proximity to harsh constructs. ForStudio Sessions Eve will present this documentation obscured by their digital collage practice as a continuation of research.

Amy Lawrence | tbc
A dance solo looking at the process of change and evolution


Friday 27 November 2020, 2pm
Dance Umbrella in partnership with ResCen Research Centre at Middlesex University, curated by Seeta Patel

Barnaby Booth | The Light Project
A fast paced and tightly composed trio being developed for performances in gallery spaces and unconventional performance spaces

Akshay Sharma | Working Title
This solo is a cry to create space for desire, power and freedom in a violent landscape

Joseph Toonga | Born to Protest
Born to Protest aims to dismantle presumptions about the black male figure based on intimidation, danger and isolation, revealing instead character traits around fragility, vulnerability and a constant battle to prove oneself

Stephanie D. Handjiiska | Presence <> Absence
A dance solo exploring how music affects the human body


Oona Doherty
Oona Doherty is an Irish dance artist based in Belfast. Doherty’s distinctive choreography has earned multiple awards. Hope Hunt and the Ascension into Lazarus (2015) was awarded a Tiger Dublin Fringe Festival Best Performer Award in 2016, and subsequently a Total Theatre Award as well as The Place Dance Prize at the Edinburgh Fringe in 2017. Doherty was voted one of the top 10 Irish Artists in 2017 by the Irish Times. Her first group piece Hard to be Soft – A Belfast Prayer (2017), was then voted the UK dance show of 2019 by the Guardian. In 2019 she created Lady Magma: The Birth of a Cult, a group work. Further collaborations include Jamie XX I dont know (2019), The Rubber Bandits (2017-2019), (La) Horde, Ballet National de Marseille (FR) (2021) and Artnight London (2021). In 2022 she will premiere her ambitious new work.

Lucy Suggate
Lucy Suggate is a dance artist and choreographer based in the UK. Making working since 2003 producing articulate and engaging solo dance performances as well as group installations and public choreographies; responding to patterns of awareness, complexity and modes of cooperation and communal embodiment. Her movement practice is an ongoing inquiry into the perceptual and physical expansion that occurs when engaged in long term moving and thinking. A Current focus is around finding choreographic iterations from transformative practices and developing reflexive movement-dance-choreographic spaces/models.

Seeta Patel
Born in London, Seeta has worked with numerous Bharatanatyam and contemporary dance professionals and toured with companies including DV8 Physical Theatre, Shobana Jeyasingh Dance Company, Gandini Juggling, David Hughes Dance Company and Mavin Khoo Dance. She has produced and presented solo and ensemble works at the Southbank Centre Purcell Room, Royal Opera House: ROH2 and Sadler’s Wells. Her collaboration with Australian choreographer Lina Limosani, Not Today’s Yesterday – a one-woman show taking a dramatic look at the whitewashing of history – premiered at the Adelaide Fringe Festival (2018) winning Best Dance and the Peace Foundation Award before touring the UK, India, Italy and Australia (2018/19/20). Film and TV credits include producing multi award-winning short dance film, The Art of Defining Me (2013) and being a judge and mentor on the BBC Young Dancer competition. Seeta created a Bharatanatyam version of The Rite of Spring (UK tour 2019) which will be expanded in 2022/23 at Sadler’s Wells.

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