What(ever) happened to British New Dance? Mary Prestidge talk in Brighton


What(ever) happened to British New Dance?

A political, arts movement? A passing phase?

A talk by

Mary Prestidge

at The Nightingale Theatre, Surrey Street, Brighton

on Saturday 14th November at 2pm – Free

Photo: Esko Koivisto

Belatedly, in Britain in the 1970’s, the dream was not yet over; a new idealism and movement toward an independence and autonomy for the individual dancer was set in motion.

Mary digs into a period of British dance history which had begun to create new languages and strategies for the renewal and survival of an art form and its artists..

Her talk and presentation will ‘un’ cover people, places and events significant to this period from Mary’s own perspective and experience as an active participant.

Mary Prestidge: Biography

Originally an Olympic gymnast in the 1960’s, Mary’s first professional work was with Ballet Rambert in the period of Norman Morrice’s directorship who had reformed the company into Britain’s first Modern Dance repertory company in 1966. In the mid 70’s after a year in New York in the thrall of the post modern dance and theatre scene there she joined forces with other newly independent dancers, namely, Jacky Lansley, Emilyn Claid, Fergus Early and Maedee Dupres and co-founded X6 Dance Space and its successor Chisenhale Dance Space, in London. These organisations provided an important context for the research and development of new dance forms and practices in Britain from 1976 until the present day.

Mary has been an influential practitioner and teacher of new and experimental dance in both the independent dance scene as well as the specialist academy. She continues to evolve new work through collaboration with other artists and art forms in a variety of performing contexts.

Mary has been a lecturer in dance at the Liverpool Institute for Performing Arts (LIPA) from 1995 until 2008. She currently shares a studio in Liverpool with dance artists Andrea Buckley and Paula Hampson. Her solo work MaryLand has recently been performed in Sweden.