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Dancers’ Career Development helps six dancers chart new career courses

Posted on November 25, 2010

In November, the Dancers’ Career Development (DCD) awarded its 2010 annual bursaries to a sextet of outstanding independent dance artists, in order to assist their respective transitions to an exciting range of career re-training programmes.

This year’s award recipients boast impressive professional CV’s and bright visions for future careers.

Seasoned West End dancer Paul Read, whose credits include Oliver! and Beauty and the Beast, received the “Ned Sherrin Bursary” to pursue acting at the Oxford School of Drama. George Long and Thema Davies, also commercial sector veterans, were awarded “Acting for Others Bursaries.”  Long, whose career has included shows from Sister Act to Fame, will study garden design at the English Gardening School. Davies, after a nine-year performing career, will begin an MA in Dance Movement Psychotherapy with Dance Voice in Bristol.

The “Wallace Potts Bursary” winner, Vinicius Salles, an independent contemporary dance artist who has worked with Jasmin Vardimon and Punchdrunk, plans to shift careers from stage to screen. Salles will pursue a filmmaking diploma at the London Film Academy. Contemporary dancer Raquel Meseguer, recipient of the “Maude Lloyd and Rudolf Nureyev Bursary” will undertake an MA in Movement Studies at Central School of Drama, after an injury halted her performing career, which included Punch Drunk, Stan Won’t Dance, and co-direction of the dance theatre company Lost Dog. Ragnhild Olsen received the “Leslie Edwards Bursary” to complete her diploma with the Association of Accounting, after a 20-year dance career with a variety of companies from The Cholmondeleys to English National Opera.

DCD is a founding member of the International Organisation for the Transition of Professional Dancers, and is dedicated to facilitating career transitions for UK dancers through comprehensive and confidential holistic support services, ranging from financial support, to career counselling. Go to thedcd.org.uk for more information.

Jonathan Gray is editor of Dancing Times. He studied at The Royal Ballet School, Leicester Polytechnic, and Wimbledon School of Art where he graduated with a BA Hons in Theatre Design. For 16 years he was a member of the curatorial department of the Theatre Museum, London, assisting on a number of dance-related exhibitions, and helping with the recreation of original designs for a number of The Royal Ballet’s productions including Danses concertantes, Daphnis and Chloë, and The Sleeping Beauty. He has also contributed to the Financial Times, written programme articles for The Royal Ballet and Birmingham Royal Ballet, and is co-author of the book Unleashing Britain: Theatre gets real 1955-64, published in 2005.

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