News

Lawrence Batley Theatre Huddersfield present: Locked down. Locked in. But living.

23 Jun 2020

Three site specific dance productions by Studio Wayne McGregor, Northern Ballet and Gary Clarke Company.

World premiere broadcasts from 28 September – 18 October 2020

Following the success of their online plays, The Understudy and Nigel Slater’s ‘Toast’, The Lawrence Batley Theatre Huddersfield has announced that it has commissioned three critically-acclaimed, UK dance companies to create three, site specific works for camera. Available to watch online, ticket holders will enjoy two contemporary dance solos and a short ballet.

Featuring choreography by Jordan James Bridge (dancer, Studio Wayne McGregor), Daniel de Andrade (Artistic Associate, Northern Ballet) and Gary Clarke (Artistic Director, Gary Clarke Company) the three works will be choreographed in isolation, using video calling software to set the work on the company’s professional dancers.

As a direct response to the Coronavirus pandemic, the three companies will create pieces that explore the theme of isolation caused by the international lockdown. The works will then be performed around the Grade II listed building which houses the Lawrence Batley theatre and captured for broadcast.

David Nixon OBE, Artistic Director of Northern Ballet said, “I am thrilled that Northern Ballet has been chosen for this digital commission with the Lawrence Batley Theatre, which will be created by our talented Artistic Associate Daniel de Andrade. This commission gives us a great opportunity to create dance whilst we

wait for theatres to reopen and reach new audiences for dance online during these unprecedented times.”

Henry Filloux-Bennett, Chief Executive and Artistic Director of the Lawrence Batley Theatre comments, “I am utterly delighted that we are finding ways to animate the Lawrence Batley Theatre while our doors remain closed by bringing together three exceptional, dance companies who have strong ties to the north. We’re incredibly excited to see what each of the choreographers creates and can’t wait to share ‘Locked down. Locked in. But living’ with audiences across the globe.”

As a regional theatre, Lawrence Batley Theatre are at the forefront of digital innovation during this cultural shift and are rising above many other organisations while continuing to adapt and bring original online theatre to the world at a time when the theatre industry faces ongoing struggles.

Wayne McGregor, Artistic Director, Studio Wayne McGregor concludes “Now more than ever the need to create and share new work seems paramount. As we emerge from this moment of separation, stillness and reflection, dance has so much to contribute to a freshly minted community of togetherness and understanding. Dance connects people. We dance to move you and Jordan’s choreography touches raw.”

The dance commission follows the success of Lawrence Batley Theatre’s recently-broadcast production of The Understudy which, in a bid to raise money for the theatre industry, reached audiences in Australia, Brazil, Canada, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hong Kong, Hungary, Israel, Italy, Kuwait, Russia, Spain, Sri Lanka, Switzerland, USA, Wales, Scotland and Ireland.

Locked down. Locked in. But living is digital triple bill of contemporary dance and ballet. It will be available from Monday 28 September – Sunday 18 October. For more information visit, www.thelbt.org