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Dancehouse stands on what always was and always will be Aboriginal land. We pay our respects to the traditional owners of this land, the Wurundjeri peoples of the Kulin Nation, to their Elders past and present, and acknowledge that sovereignty was never ceded.

Independent Choreographers Program

'Echo' (2024) by Thomas Woodman. Photo by James Lauritz.
‘Echo’ (2024) by Thomas Woodman. Photo by James Lauritz.

Dancehouse, in partnership with Insite Arts and with support of Creative Australia and Arts SA, is thrilled to announce a new pilot Independent Choreographers Program (ICP) 2024.

The Independent Choreographers Program (ICP) is an artist professional development initiative to build and support the voices, practices, and livelihoods of independent Australian choreographers. The program encourages independent choreographers to connect with others and invest time in their creativity, practice, skills, knowledge, confidence and networks.

At the heart of the Independent Choreographers Program (ICP) are 3 in-person intensives at Dancehouse across August-December 2024 where participants practise, collaborate, share, and create together building to a sharing for industry peers and audiences. Between the intensives, participants have mentoring and self-directed practice and research sessions.

The Independent Choreographers Program (ICP) will invite 10-12 practising choreographers to participate from expressions of interest. Participants will come from a range of different dance forms, training, cultures, experiences, and backgrounds. All dance forms, training and backgrounds are valued and encouraged.

For the 2024 pilot program, the majority of participants will be Melbourne-based but at least 4 interstate participants (2 from SA, and 2 from NSW) will be supported with travel costs, accommodation, and per diems to enable their attendance at the in-person intensives at Dancehouse.

The Independent Choreographers Program (ICP) 2024 pilot is informed by the success and learnings of Dancehouse’s Emerging Choreographers Program (ECP) 2020-22. This pilot program will test some core developments including the intensive program structure, and the welcoming of interstate participants (2 from South Australia, and 2 from NSW).


 

2024 EOI Information

Program Structure

The Independent Choreographers Program (ICP) has a series of phases:

  • Briefing and de-briefing sessions before and after the program
  • One-on-one mentoring
  • IThe in-person intensives at Dancehouse in August, October and December (x3)
  • Self-directed weekly practice and research throughout the program
  • Alumni producing support and invitations to participate in future ICP programs, workshops and offers

The Intensives —as the name suggests— requires the largest in-person time and commitment for participants and are outlined below. Intensives are compulsory.

INTENSIVE #1 — Research and Practice

6 days | 5-10 August 2024

> Land and acknowledge Wurrundjeri country

> Meet other participants and artists and develop own code of conduct, meet mentor

> Masterclass (3 hours) and workshops by independent artists (2 hours)

> Collaboration sessions

> Dinners and lunches, walks and check in/ outs with each other daily

INTENSIVE #2 — Sharing and feedback

3-4 days | 25- 28 October 2024

> Production and technical in-theatre training

> Masterclasses and workshops

> Dramaturgy and feedback sessions

> Each participant offers a sharing of work/ practice

INTENSIVE #3 — Presentation

4 days | 4-7 December 2024

> Rehearsals and technical and dress runs for each shared work

> Sharing of works to industry and/ or audience repeated 3 times (Fri, Sat matinee, Sat)


What ICP participants receive

  • 1 x 6-day, and 1 x 4-day intensive choreographic program at Dancehouse
  • Approximately 8 artist-led workshops (2hrs), and 6 masterclasses (3 hrs)
  • An independent artist mentor (4 x 45 min individual sessions)
  • Seminars on production and tech, dramaturgy and feedback, and ‘dance admin’ e.g. grant writing, tax
  • Exchange with other independent artists about their approach to making and creating, sustaining their choreographic practice and/ or making a living
  • At least 14 in-kind studio sessions at Dancehouse (or local studio) to sustain your practice throughout the program
  • An opportunity to share a short work or piece of choreographic research to industry and/ or audiences at the end of the program
  • Some catering and hosting during intensives
  • An annual Dancehouse membership
  • Invitations to all Dancehouse shows and events in 2024
  • As alumni, ongoing check-in and producer advice/ support with both Dancehouse and Insite in the year following the program (2025) and access to workshops in future ICPs


What ICP participants contribute

  • A nominal $300 cash contribution
  • Your time and compulsory attendance for the 3 x intensives
  • A short new work or choreographic experiment/s to share with your peers and/ or audiences at the conclusion of the program
  • Your enthusiasm and generosity with yourself, your fellow participants, and the ICP artists, facilitators and partners


SA and NSW participants

For the pilot Independent Choreographers Program in 2024, at least 4 places are made available for interstate participants: TWO from South Australia, and TWO from New South Wales.

To support attendance of the Independent Choreographers Program in Melbourne, each interstate participant will receive:

  • Shared accommodation in Melbourne close to Dancehouse with other interstate participants;
  • Per diems;
  • Flights to and from Melbourne;
  • Ground transfers to and from the airport.

Who is the ICP for?

The ICP is for choreographers already creating or leading dance projects, events and works. Participants will be able to evidence their choreographic experience.

The ethos of ICP is: self-directed learning and choreographic inquiry through practice; dance-specific professional development, exchange and advice from peers; and generative relationships with a network of peers, mentors, producers, and the dance sector.

Participants must be able to commit wholeheartedly to the program. They will be able to articulate their dance lineage and training (guru, OG, academy, school, training, certification, or study) and have ambitions and goals to research choreographic ideas, create dance projects, evidence regular practice and/ or research, and articulate a way they wish to sustain their career as a dance artist.

The ICP is not for new graduates. It is instead for independent artists and practising choreographers of any age wanting professional development to build and strengthen their existing skills, experience, networks and careers.


THE ICP COHORT

Invited ICP participants will be carefully selected to be a diverse cohort of complementary artists comprising different dance forms, disciplines, areas of interest, ages, training and experience.

This diversity of background, experience, age, and form is critical to the success of the program and extremely valuable to participants sharing and collaborating with each other as peers.

The cohort will be chosen by the independent artist mentors and facilitators of the ICP in consultation with Dancehouse and Insite Arts.


KEY DATES (2024)

April-May ICP Lead artist facilitator and mentors announced
Wed 15 May EOIs close
Mon 24 June All applicants notified

Fri 5 July ICP participant online briefing
Mon 5-Sat 10 August Intensive #1 — practice and research
August-October Self-directed weekly practice and creation sessions
Fri 25-Sun 27 October Intensive #2 — sharing and feedback
October-December Self-directed weekly practice and creation sessions
4-7 December Intensive #3 — presentations
December ICP participant online debriefing

What will the space be used for?

Have you hired a space at Dancehouse before?