Saturday, 18 February 2006

Alsager Arts Centre, Stoke on Trent

Catch 2
© Gigi Giannella Catch

Catch 1
© Gigi Giannella Catch

16th of February is my birthday, and this year we Stephanie Schober and Dance Company went to Alsager, Stoke-on-Trent, to perform the whole evening show.

Typical schedule when we perform outside of London is:
To meet up about 10am and travel by car for 3-4 hours. After arrival at a venue, warming-up, technical rehearsal and a performance. Then travel back by car and back home about midnight. Tiring.

We have been to several venues but actually it has been rare to walk around a venue. Normally we are stuck in a theatre so I found that if does not make so much difference where we go. Shame. But actually it matters where we go because the size and atmosphere of a theatre are varied, and type of audience is different too.

Alsager Arts Centre is part of Manchester Metropolitan University, which has a dance department. This means they have a decent stage and dance students would be the main audience. Stephanie's works needs a stage with a decent size since we deal with space or distance between dancers so much. The space talks as much as the dancers' bodies. As for the audience, dance students could be either good or bad. When we performed in Bedford last autumn, I felt the audience - dance students really did not understand or enjoy our performance. Dance students have some kind of judgemental attitude as watching dance, which can make us harder to dance. This time in Alsager, I felt the students were more honest and absorbed in the dance. All dancers enjoyed performing. Everything went well. We had a good start of the second round of the touring.

Next week, a big day at South Bank Centre.
My body is sore. I have to recover in this weekend.

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