About Shobana Jeyasingh Dance
Since its inception in 1988, Shobana Jeyasingh Dance has worked throughout the United Kingdom and internationally, producing and touring dance works by its artistic director and choreographer, Shobana Jeyasingh. Each year, the company engages with up to 30,000 people through performances and a range of education projects.
Shobana Jeyasingh is acclaimed for her pioneering work in choreography. She deploys her South Asian roots to create work that is uniquely British. The dance itself is ground-breaking and contemporary in style but draws on many traditional forms and influences such as Ballet or Bharata Natyam, a centuries-old Asian classical dance form. This produces a language of movement with which people from all cultures can identify.
Shobana Jeyasingh's vision for her company is that the excellence of its culturally innovative artistic output is complemented by equally robust strategies to widen its reach and to influence a diverse and extended range of audiences and stakeholders. The company is rooted in a vision of a Britain that is culturally coherent in new and unexpected ways, as well as a theatrical vision that aims to persuade new audiences to enjoy, delight in and be challenged by the best in contemporary dance. We continue to contribute to the fascinating and complex cultural dialogues that define urban life in the twenty-first century. We see connections where others see only differences and we seek to make these connections through choreographic practice, through the imaginative choice of collaborators and through the use of a wide range of platforms and media for the dissemination of our work.
Adventurous and experimental, Shobana has pioneered collaborations with some of the most exciting musicians and artists of our times. The company has commissioned many new pieces of music, now heard round the world. These include Michael Nyman's String Quartet No. 2 (Configurations), as well as work with contemporary favourite Kevin Volans.
Shobana Jeyasingh Dance draws dancers from Britain and abroad most recently from Malaysia, USA, Italy, India, Spain, Vietnam, Portugal, Germany and Sweden. Dancers are valued creative collaborators in the studio during the making of the dance work as well as performers on stage.
Shobana Jeyasingh Dance has a long history of imaginative education work both in schools and in the wider community. It offers apprentice placements for appropriately qualified dance students. The company's education team delivers a range of workshops, technique classes, and residencies for all ages and levels. Many of these activities feature company dancers, several of whom are skilled and experienced teachers. Shobana Jeyasingh Dance was the winner of the Prudential Award for the Arts and was the subject of the BBC documentary 'Inbetween'.
Shobana Jeyasingh > Artistic Director and Choreographer
Born in Chennai, India and now living in London, Shobana founded Shobana Jeyasingh Dance in 1988. She has produced numerous works for the stage, theatre and camera. Her site specific work includes performances created for Greenwich Borough Hall [with a live web cast from Bangalore, India], the cafe at Waterman's Arts, Brentford, The City Hall, London as well as 2Step for twenty dancers on the steps of St Pauls performed as part of the Olympic Handover in August 08. Her recent commissioned works include Polar Sequences for Random Dance, Triptych for Canasia Festival, Canada, Pop Idle for Ricochet's Move Me Interactive Dance Booth, City:zen for City Contemporary Dance Company, Hong Kong and Breach for Ballet Black.
Shobana has received two Time Out Dance Awards, three Digital Dance awards, and her work Palimpsest was short listed for the Southbank Show Award. She was also a recipient of the London Music and Dance Award. Shobana was awarded an MBE in January 1995 for services to dance. She also holds an honorary MA from Surrey University and an honorary doctorate from De Montfort University, Leicester. She is a Research Associate at ResCen, the Centre for Research in Creation in the Performing Arts at Middlesex University and was awarded a NESTA Dream Time Fellowship in 2005, to visit China and Japan. In May 2008 she was named an Asian Woman of Achievement for her contribution to the arts in Britain.