Sunday, 26 July 2015

Thank you for Benefit and Playfest

A big thank you to Jane Tressider
for kindly and generously organising a Historic Harp Concert by Javier Sainz in the Borlase Smart room at Porthmeor Studios on Saturday. It was lovely event which raised just over £200 for us.

It will enable us to pay the rent for our next residency ( 3 this year! ) when we return to Back Lane West, Redruth this November! with Shallal Studio artists concentrating on cross art form and 3D work, in contrast to 2D work at Porthmeor which is flourishing.

Last performance this summer is a return to Playfest at Boscawen Park, Truro with Shallal 2 outreach group, 12pm - 1pm 20min performance followed by play/workshop space for families with music, dance and props. Hope to see you there it's a free festival!

comments and group photo

Friday morning rehearsal photo of main co by Belinda Whiting...we have loved having Belinda with us over this week, Trevor came later.
12 performers in the first half by Shallal 2 and 20 performers in the second half by Shallal Dance Theatre,  Miles, Katherine and Sam were unable to come and the remainder were away or in poor health. 3 of (((of echoes))) performed at the beginning of the second half. In the afternoon they choreographed a piece which Shallal dancers then improvised within, it was lovely to have them with us.

Audience Comments

Good work Eddie, Anna, Skye, Zoe. I really miss
coming back
lots of love Paul S
I will show you some of my zumba moves soon

Fantastic - wonderful show.
Thank you all.

Beautiful and inspirational as always!

Wonderful Show

Watching the performances creates a space in my head for another day - thank you.

Incredible I really wish that I could be able to join!!

An inspiration! Brilliant xx

****** impressive Mrs Willis and companies! xxxx

It was lovely to see everyone dance and how great to see you all develop so much. Brilliant dancing xx

Some unsolicited Residency Feedback

"It was wonderful to watch *****grow in confidence through the week it was like watching *** grow another limb" parent

Thank you for all you are doing and, of course, Colin too.  **** is loving Shallal and much of that has to be the wonderfully calm and caring atmosphere you create.
Thank you so much.

Thank you Jo!
I have to say it was a delight (and a privilege) to have worked with you during this week and I felt happy being so included!
I really enjoyed being with you all and was massively impressed with everyone and touched by so much!
I hope photos will do some justice to everyone’s hard work….
Best wishes to all.
Belinda xx

Thank you so very much for an amazing, creative few days this week and for giving us the opportunity to make even more wonderful friends, .... Dance has always been part of my life, but I have never ever worked so hard at physically communicating my emotions - it's been an awesome journey of discovery ...... I'm so relieved and proud that Maybelle rewarded your faith in her last night and I know this aspect of her learning will be a lifelong benefit to her in so many ways. ........

SO that leads me into a few words about the show.
Shallal 2
 are where all our new methods have sprung from and i was really proud of them ( I don't like to use the word pride much but they all did their very best).Maybelle who at 5 years old and very talented - we can't push or expect too much off, but know that she can can do amazingly...took to the stage with her white dress and wowed her audience.
Sometimes people step on the stage and the lights atmosphere work for them and this was true for her that evening! ( Ley, Peter and Andrew also increase their "output" and shine in spotlight). Miles an important member was ill and Eddie and Skye stepped in and performed as if they hadn't had a break. The audience were really behind them from the start which is also an achievement it usually takes a good 10 minutes to warm up/ create a relationship with your audience. Thank you to them all, they only meet for an hour and a half each week, and contribute exciting music and ideas etc.

Shallal Dance Theatre
Is a much larger group we have worked together for many years but also have people who have only just joined, it is a moveable feast. It works a variety of art forms, following the talents and inspiration of the group wherever possible. Always New has grown from applying Shallal 2's choreographic approaches to the main co's love for open improvisation and George's wonderful musical in the moment talent.
( We had a chance in the residency to give George feedback from dancers about working with live music it was really insightful and helpful - more another time).
So we had pieces that started with:
a performer and music
performers running in and then music
2 performers dancing then music

then we had 2 new solos
Zoe and Zoe ..lovely and enchanting and a sample of work done on first day
and bamboo balancing, props group dance - rehearsal photo on previous blog

Zoe Osmond solo - images created by Kerry Lawrence from residency

2 older recorded music pieces
and a revisited Adele piece "Chasing Pavements", Anna and Skye had improvised to this when much younger in the Penryn group pre Shallal 2 and we thought it would be fun to perform it now.....
our fingers are crossed that next term they get Fridays off as they are both off to college, so we may need to be creative to find ways to enable us all to work together or be patient and wait for them!

All the performers teach me a lot and develop and grow over time. 
It has been very interesting for me to watch Anna and Skye from about 9 years old to now 15/16 and how their work has developed, as i have mainly worked with adults, and children/ young people are more of a responsibility, possibly more fragile as they are still rapidly developing and changing in who they are. I am so pleased they have stayed with us.

There is much to be said, the group improvisations, spontaneous group work, travelling through space, timing, confidence, range of expression, etc all has excelled under Always New.
I am looking forward to sorting all my notes and evaluating it and collating all we have learned and chatting to everyone again about it all.

Thank you to AMATA for enabling it to happen and to The Arts Council for funding our time this week. 

Obvious new relationships from it are Michael as our graphic designer, Belinda lighting/photography, Frazer live music coming to our Wednesday afternoon, Kerry and Hannah from Italy, Eddie wanting to return to main co , Paul wanting to return to Shallal 2, a new possible young member, Mike travelling from Wadebridge to meet and work with us, Jane attending all week from Friends and Dancing and there is much more and people who couldn't make it such a group from ROC in Paignton...but that can be for another blog

Love and thanks to all who made it possible and lets hope we can do it again sometime!!!

Wednesday, 22 July 2015

Show tomorrow and request for Photographer needed for Friday Please!!!!

Our normal supportive photographers are all busy.
It should be a beautiful show and it would be good to capture it.
If you have the time and are interested please contact Jo on

This strong image by Andy Parker came from our show last year at AMATA, The Performance Centre

photos from the last 2 days

The photographs aren't representative of the mass of work that went on during the day/s as i only really picked up the camera when it was quiet!
but we can show you:
Kerry and Colin crossing the room
Arron on drums visiting for the morning

Jonathan finding amazing balance with the bamboo

more bamboo and this new piece will be in the show

Jane from Friends and Dancing has come every day and excelled in her solo with George on the first day

Lydia, Zoe and Anna
(we now have Zoe, Zoe and Zo, Jo and Jo, Anna and Anna and had Kerry and Kerry!)

Youngest member on the phone!

i really love this photo
we asked Zoe ( Osmond ) and Jonathan to incorporate drama
Jonathan has a history in amateur dramatics and loves musical theatre, we can't provide this for him but can try to give space for these aspects of his creativity!

so pleased to have guests Frazer and Aran, Mike, Eddie and Stewart
sadly the Wheeler Family couldn't make it at the last minute so
we hope to reschedule for a music (and art) afternoon at the main co with them

i love the different dynamics in this photo Maybelle in front

 Eddie and Skye back in Shallal 2 for tomorrows performance, Miles sadly unwell and can't be with us and Peter resting and hoping to make it!
Thank goodness for working Open Improvisation technique for performances so we can continue to work and present through these unexpected last minute changes.

The new style of performance work has come about partly, as i have said before, as:
we had many performers join us who preferred group work, not solos/duets
the work doesn't lend itself to understudying - so how to continue?
people with chronic health issues don't have to experience anxiety if they can't come to a performance at the last minute
also more importantly
it keeps giving (back) the creative freedom to the performer/artist.

Shallal Shared Residency and picnic photo

Our eagerly awaited Shallal Shared AMATA residency started Monday.
A small blip at the beginning was finding out we had been moved and no longer had beautiful Studio C to work in however Pete and all the technicians came and transformed Studio B for us, taking up the black dance floor, removing the black out, stacking the seating and thereby lightening the space and making it spacious and airy!
So many of us from throughout Shallal arrived for the day ( from Shallal Dance Theatre, Shallal 2 and even Friends and Dancing ) along with guests so we are achieving our hopes. New and old friends and collaborations.
Belinda was with us all day
Eddie and Stewart came for the morning. Eddie had a small camera he could attach to his head and dance with.
Daniella and Paul arrived for the afternoon.
Kerry and Hannah came as well for the end of the afternoon and will be with us all day Tuesday.
Kerry replaced Anna Marie Murphy as co-facilitator in the 'old days' over 20 yrs ago now and lives in Bologna but visits every summer.
The morning we settled in and awaited the space transformation, we worked with:
'warm up'
rhythm creation
rhythm creation travelling, adding on....
Open Improvisation
Starting in small groups

After lunch we moved again and then did Solos.
It seemed rather risky so soon but the work was wonderful, surpassing what many people had done before, peoples movement range, confidence, spatial awareness and choreographic decisions expanded before our eyes.
The dancers had the chance to work solely with George ( musician) who had seen their rhythm choices in the morning so they were already tuned into each other.
Egyptian dance, Indian dance, Flamenco all use solo dancer/musician relationship.

Meanwhile Zoe, Anna, Eddie, Stewart, Kerry and Belinda took photographs to use in their own creative process.
and artists Eddie, Toby, Kerry, Joseph, Katie, Gareth, Colin, Kerry sketched small or large responses.

Fantastic day yesterday as well different emphasis, with bamboos and balance being revisited as a theme from Kerry and Jonathan doing amazing balancing and independent movement.

looking forward to today
Friends and Dancing visiting for morning session and music exploration this afternoon followed by Shallal 2.

and not to forget the annual Shallal main co Summer Picnic

Sunday, 12 July 2015

outreach photos and Kneehigh crowd funder
Photos from Holifield on above link.

Photos coming in from our last outreach shows.
These are from Elaine at Mazey Day - in the bandstand at Morrab Gardens

Good news that Kneehigh have offered our group free tickets and a pre-show workshop all part of their wonderful scheme....this year they are partly funding it by
which only has few days left to go.

Friday, 10 July 2015

Participate Article and (((echoes dance co ))) performances next week!

encouraged to write about us for the wider dance audience so ......
we have a short article in Participate focusing on Kerry and Star......

Should be good! Hope to make the 17th ..really enjoyed last years show at the same space.......
Olga used to dance with us some years ago and you can see Kerry next to her at the back of the carriage and Star third in from left!

Monday, 6 July 2015

Residencies... important information and invitations

This is the year of the Residencies and I am so excited - keep using that word.
As someone who loves process, open space, the opportunity to explore and play residencies are a joyful challenge and i love to see where they will go.

They each have a focus so:
Shallal Shared

Shallal Dance Theatre will use the AMATA residency to explore open format improvisation within performance. To refine their skills and define the parameters of this new style, “Always New” working  with musician George Bradley-Peer. 
There is an invitation to: emerging and established visual artists, photographers, performers, musicians, and poets to come and explore work with them, contact or if interested.  
There will be an Open Workshop 10am - 1pm on Thursday 23 July and a final Performance Platform 7pm Friday 24 July which will showcase work from from the past year as well as from the residency.

Shallal Studios at Porthmeor Studio
a very exciting residency at Porthmeor Studios in St Ives from July to September  with rent supported by Falmouth Art Gallery. This residency is an extraordinary opportunity for the artists to spend a sustained period developing their work in a professional art studio which inspired a number of great British 20th century artists.  The residency acts as a pilot project enabling us to carry out feasibility research for a permanent studio space in the future. 
Lou Brett our project manager who will evaluate it.
The residency is structured so that two experienced Shallal art facilitators/artists in residence will be in the studio during the week and Shallal Studio artists will be able to book as much time as they want to work in the studio supported according to their varying needs. The artists will pursue their own programme of work mentored by facilitators and chose to learn new skills to extend their vocabulary and develop new directions.  There will be workshops provided to enable artists to learn new skills. Guest artists are invited to join us in this inclusive project, so far they are coming from as far afield as Essex and Italy! If you are interested please contact
There will be Open Studio Days 16 and 19 September as part of the St Ives Festival Programme 

Both these projects have been successful in gaining Arts Council funding.

Back Lane West Residency
In November
Building on our residency last October which informed and inspired Porthmoer, this time there will be an emphasis on cross art form, collaborations and 3D work, we are looking forward to this. No funding as yet but lots of enthusiasm as always and some artists in place with experimental photography, dancers, music and instillations...

Towards this and our work in general artist Jane Tressider is kindly organising a Benefit, hope to see you there! 

Thursday, 2 July 2015

David and Esme article

Good news
David wanted to celebrate the anniversary of their courtship and asked about getting an article in the local newspaper The Falmouth Packet. Thanks to Lou Brett and Helen Dale for enabling this to happen. I was thrilled to see it in the paper this morning.
We all wish David and Esme much happiness.

Wednesday, 1 July 2015

snaps from days out

A few pics from our days out, more soon!

Holifield Colin and Peter
so pleased that Peter is joining main co as he wanted to last year after the shared show in the summer

Zo, Molly and Katie on the bandstand Morrab Gardens, Mazey Day.

Kerry and Colin
Thank you to Arron and Jacob, Anna and Luke for taking photos for us.

Worth looking at:

Really good young graphic designer,

Last year at Asylum, thanks to to Kneehigh's Rambles project!
We have been offered tickets again this summer, many thanks to their outreach!

Well while being entertained by Miracle Theatre co before our show, Lydia, Glen, Jo and Peter were taken from the audience.
Great to have Peter with us and see Glen back on stage!!!

Yesterday 1st July Shallal Studios 3 month Residency at Porthmeor Studios, St Ives started....
wonderful opportunity we are all so excited ......see you there.
Open Studio days in Sept in St Ives festival, or drop in if you are passing
more info on Shallal Studios blog!!

Comments from Dance on the Grass

Dance on the Grass -Wednesday evening...
Well done to all of Shallal 2.
Thank you to Comic Relief our funders this term, to all at Gyllyngdune Gardens especially Jacqui's unstinting enthusiasm and support, and all our supporters, families and friends.

Anna was unwell on the day, Paul and Eddie are busy with other commitments, Skye couldn't come this term as she was studying. And yet with a lot of illness / absences this term I am so pleased with everyone, they pulled off a really good show with integrity and commitment.
Guest artist Colin!
'The work works' and it is good for me to be re confirmed in it. I learn so much every performance and what a joy to have a free outdoor relaxed event, in a beautiful setting. With an audience full of old and new faces.

Audience Comments:

Beautiful to watch. Thank you
Amazing. So moving. You used the space beautifully
Great performance full of energy. Great musicality and interpretation from all performers. Gave me goose bumps. Well done all!
A joy to watch - loved it all. Thank you
Wonderful performance in a beautiful setting.
Lovely, moving, funny performances. Everybody was great. You all worked together so well, responding to each other. Thank you!
I love the contrast in colours between the white of the child and the black of the adults. Very enjoyable!!
It was fun, exciting and special!
Transcendent and Enriching- i feel very moved and uplifted - Thanks so much.

Many years ago we performed a lovely show Face to Face at Penwith College as the Acorn was being refurbished. We have very few if any photos of it archived and yet i remember it so well as one of my favourite shows, Dance on the Grass was also memorable and has no professional photos or record as our friendly supportive photographer of Shallal 2 Simon Roff was unable to come...but that is also the beauty of LIVE performance, for the moment and the memory.
And then I need to thank Michael who actually took lots of photos for us, so that after that preamble I couldn't choose between all these below!

Maybelle adds a prop to her dance

Mexican hat dance

family photo

Sidney's dance at the end

well done

appreciative audience