Based in the South Tyrone area of Northern Ireland, Sutemos is a youth company comprising of 20 dancers representing eight different nationalities. Sutemos is run and choreographed by Sheena Kelly, who set out to run a project that would raise the confidence of the participants, bring other community groups together and create a performance that would represent the diversity of the group.
The group was awarded £4,000 as part of the Community Dance scheme to develop a performance, engage with other dance groups in the area and take part in a specialist workshop that would enhance their abilities. They organised a performance in December 2011 and invited groups from the area – DICE, Spiecius and the East Timorese Dancers – to join them in showcasing the talent in the local region. This gave Sutemos their first opportunity to premiere the work they had devised, which is primarily focused on contemporary dance.
The group have become much more confident... sharing their opinions and creative ideas of where and what the group should be doing
Sutemos were invited to perform at Northern Ireland’s largest interactive dance festival, CityDance. This gave the group an opportunity to participate alongside other community and professional dance companies at this sell-out event, and to raise their profile.
The grant was also used to invite acclaimed BBoy Paul ‘Balen’ Allen from Bad Taste Cru to run a breakdance workshop for over 40 young people, which for many of the participants was the first time they had taken part in this style of dance.
Following this workshop and local performances, Sutemos’ membership has expanded and now includes dancers who had previously not had much involvement with contemporary dance.
“The Sutemos Youth Dance Group have become much more confident in themselves and have taken ownership of the group, sharing their opinions and creative ideas of where and what the group should be doing.”
“The young people tackled the complex choreography with such concentration, focus and passion that it would have been impossible for anyone leaving the theatre not to have been truly inspired.”
Keith Acheson, Director of the Crescent Arts Centre
“I started to believe in myself more and not be afraid of doing new moves even if it goes wrong.”
Participant, Sutemos Youth Dance Group
Sutemos hope to continue to work with other local groups to further diversify the interests and skills of the young people involved, as well as strengthen the dance innovativeness and social cohesion in the area.
Byre Youth Dance, based in Fife, will use their £5,000 grant to offer master classes to local community groups and to develop three new pieces of choreography. A creative residency led by professional choreographers will help to take the group to the next challenge of becoming a performance ensemble.
Working with diverse communities in a deprived area of Leicester, 2Funky Arts Ltd are running a project to fuse street dance with Bollywood to create new piece of work that will culminate in a public showcase.
This Guildford based group have used their grant to bring a specialist teacher and assistants over from Hungary to engage with the group on a 3-day workshop. They will also produce a celebration of Hungarian folk dance in Guildford bringing other Hungarian dancers from London and across the UK together.