Introducing... Fallen Angels Dance Theatre
Posted on: 01st February 2017 at 00:00
Posted by: PANDA
This week we're thrilled to introduce you to Claire Morris, Manager of Fallen Angels Dance Theatre. Read on to find out more about their work.
Can you give some background about Fallen Angels?
Paul Bayes Kitcher started working with dance theatre using themes surrounding addiction in 2009. Through some key arts council funded artistic projects he began his research into using addiction to inform his artistic dance theatre practice.
The following year he began delivering creative workshops within recovery rehabilitation settings developing his participatory practice. It was at this time he witnessed first-hand the power the arts have to transform lives. The workshops enabled people coming into recovery to develop trust and confidence, which had a knock-on effect to their ability to open up in group counselling sessions which benefitted their recovery process.
In 2011 Paul consolidated both practices under the umbrella of Fallen Angels Dance Theatre with the creation of “Chapter One: Battle for the Soul”:
'Full of narrative and emotional content, Chapter One is an unexpectedly powerful and fulfilling piece of dance theatre. Fallen Angels Dance Theatre is looking like an important new player in contemporary dance.' Peter Jacobs, The Public Reviews
The tours received critical acclaim, with positive reviews and articles in local, regional and national press, interviews on television and radio, and worldwide articles on the internet.
How did you get involved with Fallen Angels?
From the outset, I have project managed and supported Paul’s artistic work whilst delivering my own artistic and participatory practice as a dance artist spanning over 20 years, so my role has evolved alongside the company and now charity.
Why is this type of work important?
FADT works predominantly with people in recovery from addiction, through our activities we see first-hand the power dance has to transform lives. Through our workshops and projects, we see people gain confidence and self-esteem, improve their health and wellbeing, and have an outlet for creativity and self-expression.
There is still a stigma surrounding addiction, at FADT we hope that our productions will support the recovery community to break down stigma and raise awareness that people can and do recover.
What are you currently working on?
At the moment, we have 5 participatory projects happening in four locations in the North West, alongside performances of our professional work “Upon Awakening” which tours to locations in the North West and will conclude in a performance at The Royal Opera House.
This is an exciting time for FADT. We have some new, exciting developments and partnerships that could open up opportunities and potential growth including Fallen Angels Dance Theatre being a partner in the Royal Opera House Links skills-sharing programme.
We are spending this next year developing our organisation in order to work towards sustainability for both participatory and touring. We are hoping to explore alternative approaches to performance in order for us to reach out more meaningfully to our audiences.
Why are the arts important?
We see through our beneficiaries on a weekly basis why the arts are so important; our projects give them a focus, motivation, a connection with others, a positive shared experience, and something to be proud of.
Our workshops are powerful on many levels for those in recovery from addiction/mental health - it enables beneficiaries to have an outlet to share their life experiences, that they express through movement which is healing for the mind and body.
You’re currently seeking board members - would you like to elaborate on who you are looking for and why board members are important?
FADT Board members have been invaluable in our development. They are an important source of support and knowledge for both Paul and I. They are the outside eye, they bring objectivity and skills that help us to move forward.
We would especially welcome applications from professionals who have a range of skills, experience and knowledge, in particular:
Addiction and Recovery
Fundraising & Income Generation
Research on addiction or cultural policy
If you're interested in becoming a board member for FADT you can find out more here.