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National Dance Company Wales seeks new director

Posted on August 11, 2014

ndcwales photo fairyodd

ndcwales photo fairyoddNational Dance Company Wales (NDCWales) has launched its search for a new artistic director, after the departure of Ann Sholem in November last year. As well as a new artistic director, the company is seeking a new chief executive, and plans to refresh its board of trustees.

The announcement comes after the Arts Council of Wales (ACW) ordered an independent report into the company, which found that the board was “unable to function in an appropriate manner”. The report concluded that “the company is facing a crisis in its governance and its management”, recommending that the old board step down and that company chairman Andrew Davies and two other directors oversee the appointment of a new board, before leaving. The new board is to be in place by January 2015.

During 2014, both Sholem and fellow NDCWales founder Roy Campbell-Moore resigned, as did five of the company’s eight directors. There have been calls for Davies to resign, but ACW chief executive Nick Capaldi has supported Davies, calling him “the right person” to see the company through this transition.

A financial watchdog is investigating the company’s funding. It receives the majority of its funding, more than £850,000, from ACW. This year, it received an extra £40,000 from ACW to assist with the organisation. In a statement, NDCWales said: “We understand that the Wales Audit Office is looking at the administration of grants by the Arts Council of Wales. While we are happy to assist where our input is requested, we do not consider this to be a matter for us and therefore have no further comment to make.”

Announcing the search for a new director, Davies said: “We are delighted to be in a position to move forward with the recruitment of a new senior team for the company. It follows what has been a significant year of change for us, during which time I have been continually impressed by the resilience, dedication and professionalism of the company’s interim management and staff, both artistic and administrative. I am sure that these attributes help the company respond well to a renewed and reinvigorated leadership as NDCWales continues to deliver world-class dance for the people of Wales and further beyond.”

The company has begun rehearsals for its autumn tour, which will include Tuplet by Swedish choreographer Alexander Ekman. The tour will visit Newcastle, Newtown and Brecon, as well as overseas appearances in Italy and France. 


Picture: dancers of NDCWales in an open rehearsal for Stephen Petronio’s Water Stories. Photograph: Fairyodd



Zoë was born in Edinburgh, and saw her first dance performances at the Festival there. She is the dance critic of The Independent, and has also written for The Independent on Sunday, The Scotsman and Dancing Times. In 2002, she received her doctorate from the University of York for a thesis on “Nationhood and epic romance: Ariosto, Sidney, Spenser”. She is the author of The Royal Ballet: 75 Years and The Ballet Lover’s Companion.

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