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Summer Dance Intensive (SDi) Monday 31st July to Saturday 5th August 2017 / 10am - 5pm

The HopBarn is extremely excited in offering a Summer Dance Intensive for young people aged from 12 to 18 years of age.

The SDi will offer young people with or without previous dance experience the opportunity to experience the process of contemporary choreographic development, whilst learning new and invaluable skills through the process of creation. Working with a methodology that reflects the professional sector, the SDi is offered as an insightful introduction to the world of contemporary dance and is led by Jonathan Poole, former dancer and Centre for Advanced Training Manager in Dance at The Lowry, Salford Quays.

Centre for Advanced Training in Dance at The Lowry

Image: Centre for Advanced Training at The Lowry / class and rehearsal shot

Each day the SDi will begin with a contemporary dance technique class, incorporating Graham, Cunningham and Limón dance techniques. These techniques are used widely in the professional dance sector with many professional companies utilizing them alongside ballet in order to offer continued training and development to dancers as part of their regular daily routine. Pioneered by legendary choreographers Martha Graham, Merce Cunningham and José Arcadio Limón in the United States during the early and mid 20th Century, they now form an important and necessary foundation for contemporary dance training in the UK and feature as part of the core curriculum offer for The Centre for Advanced Training Scheme (CAT) at The Lowry. As such, many students on the CAT Scheme who began with little or no dance training were able to progress into full-time professional training at distinguished schools such as The Northern School of Contemporary Dance, Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance and London Contemporary Dance School.

Following the daily technique class, SDi participants will be led through a series of choreographic task based work, devising and developing new and original movement material in order to structure a new piece of contemporary dance repertoire. The process of creation will resemble the choreographic methods of the professional sector as participants will be asked to interpret their own ideas centered around a given theme or concept. As the week progresses, the movement material created will be refined and structured so that a short piece of contemporary choreography lasting approximately 10 – 15 minutes in length will be devised. This work will then feature as a culmination of the week by being presented to an invited audience.

Centre for Advanced Training at The Lowry, students in rehearsal

Image: Centre for Advanced Training at The Lowry / rehearsal shot

In both scenario’s, the daily technique class and the process of choreographic creation, it is intended that the SDi offers participants a unique and invaluable experience of what it is like to work for a contemporary dance company. By the end of the week it is anticipated that participants will gain invaluable skills, not only centred around their own ability to dance as well as their understanding of contemporary technique and choreographic development, but also in how they form close partnerships and working practices with other participants.

This is an exciting opportunity and following the SDi it is intended that participants are offered further opportunities to partake in dance activity either at The HopBarn or from other notable organisations and dance providers within the local area.

The participation fee for attending the SDi is £50 per participant and covers the full week working from 10am – 5pm Monday to Saturday.

To book a place download and complete the booking form in either word or PDF format

or if you wish to find out more please contact:

The HopBarn

Hockerwood Lane

Upton Road



NG25 0PZ


About Jonathan Poole

Jonathan graduated from The Northern School of Contemporary Dance in 1996 and worked with Arc Dance Company under the direction of Kim Brandstrup until 2004. Although Arc Dance Company no longer tours, Kim Brandstrup continues to choreograph and has worked internationally with major ballet and opera companies as well as leading contemporary companies such as Rambert Dance Company.

In addition to working with Arc Dance Company, Jonathan undertook a number of freelance projects with other companies and choreographers in the UK and abroad. A notable role was performing as a soloist in Robert Wilson’s production of Aida at The Royal Opera House in 2003 and at La Monnaie / De Munt, Brussels in 2004. In 2005 Jonathan was awarded the position of Dancer and Assistant Teacher with Odyssey Dance Theatre in Singapore, performing company repertoire in Singapore, Korea and Armenia.

Upon returning to the UK in 2006, Jonathan was employed at The Northern School of Contemporary Dance in Leeds, teaching and mentoring students on The Yorkshire Young Dancers (YYD) Centre for Advanced Training Scheme in Dance (CAT).

It was whilst working with the YYD students on a new piece of choreography that The JP Project was formed in 2008. Supported by the Arts Council of England through the Grants for the Arts Programme (G4A), this project brought together a professional company of dancers and producers to re-create ‘…even silence holds breath!’ a piece of contemporary dance repertoire that was inspired by the teachings received by Robert Wilson and Kim Brandstrup as well as a sculpture by Henry Moore. The production premiered at Dean Clough Mills in October in 2008 and was about to be further developed and toured when the opportunity arose to develop a new Centre for Advanced Training Scheme (CAT) at The Lowry in Salford Quays.

Jonathan teaching students on the Centre for Advanced Training at The Lowry

The position of CAT Manager at The Lowry presented a unique opportunity. In this position Jonathan was tasked with establishing the North West CAT scheme on behalf of The Lowry and the Department for Education’s prestigious Music and Dance Scheme. From 2009 to 2015 the scheme evolved from its initial development stage into a highly important contributor to the dance ecology in the North West. The scheme still continues and offers a core programme of training alongside other similar opportunities for children and young people with The Lowry’s Learning and Engagement Department.

In 2015 as The HopBarn was beginning to offer a regular programme of Music and events, a decision was made to leave The Lowry in order that he could work with The HopBarn Directors and build on the regular programme of music, helping to shape the core offer and establish The HopBarn as a viable centre for Music and Creative Performance.

About the North West Centre for Advanced Training Scheme at The Lowry

The North West Centre for Advanced Training Scheme is hosted by The Lowry, Salford Quays. Established in 2010, The North West CAT provides up to 14 hours a week of dance provision for children and young people who have a passion and determination to succeed in dance. Students on the scheme have access to professional teachers and practitioners and engage in regular activity delivered by leading dance companies from the UK and abroad. Many former CAT students that successfully auditioned for full-time training, are now working in the profession demonstrating the important link between the offer of pre-vocational dance training to children and young people in the early stages of their dance career.

Click Here to find out more about the Centre for Advanced Training at The Lowry.

About the National Centre’s for Advanced Training in Dance (CAT)

The National Centre’s for Advanced Training in Dance (CATs) are a collective of 9 pre-vocational training schemes strategically located in each sub-region of England. Funded by the Department for Education’s prestigious Music and Dance Scheme, the CATs feature as part of a wider government initiative to provide all children and young people, regardless of their personal circumstances the opportunity to embark on high quality training and nurturing in order that (if they choose to do so), they can embark on full-time professional training at a distinguished school or conservatoire.

Click Here to find out more about the National Dance CATs, please

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