(**to focus on my bigger vision, choreographing / performing and another big project I have been dreaming of for too long)
So… the idea came up of doing a social night with all my students to celebrate the end of the classes!
We are doing 2 things. Please let me know in advance if you are coming so I can book tables.
If I don’t know you are coming… well, you might have to stand up all night LOL!
THURS 24th MAY, from +/- 9pm
at Troy Bar in Shoreditch
Free Entry / Consume at the Bar:
WED 30th MAY, +/- 8pm
at Rum Kitchen in Soho
See prices on the menu:
Feel free to invite peeps who would be interested or been to my classes.
I hope to see old faces too!
PS: I am CRAP at organizing social events… so pls make it easy for me to know who is in and who isn’t LOL!
PS2: Classes are on until 29th May!
PS3: Here is my blog post about me retiring as a teacher to focus on my big artistic dreams:
Jazz music in the background, the smell of coffee and rose white tea, steam coming out my mug, all of a sudden… my eyes lit up!
“1000 Pieces Puzzle isn’t a project, it feels more like a movement.”.
I am sitting in a coffee shop, an informal catch up with Theresa Beattie, a phenomenal woman who has several decades of experience within the arts as a producer and artistic director. Her words resonate and echo a couple of times in the space… It feels like my mind stands still for a second.
It’s been 2 weeks now since we wrapped up the 2017 edition. I have desperatelly been trying to write a simple Facebook status, but not a word is coming out! Have you ever had a creative block when writing a Facebook status?!?!
1000 Pieces Puzzle (2017 edition) has been such an emotional rollercoaster of growth, an experience made of magic, bubbles and sparkle, it was such a powerful heartwarming event that I have been unable to write anything that would give it justice.
It was “life-changing”, as many participants described it. And life-changing moments are sometimes better described in silence than in words.
Sipping tea, my mind keeps repeating Theresa’s words in a loop: “1000 Pieces Puzzle isn’t a project, it feels more like a movement.”. My frozen stillness felt like decades even though I am sure it must have only taken a few seconds before I tried to speak again.
Theresa had heard of the programme last year, I had invited her as a consultant to be a part of a Business Brainstorm weekend to move Cindy Claes Productions forwards. Twelve months later, she saw the results live. An explosive collaboration between 30 dancers, and 4 countries: UK – Belgium – Jamaica – USA.
1000 Pieces Puzzle is an international dance exchange and leadership program I set up a few years ago. It is mainly, but not exclusivelly, aimed at supporting Hiphop, Dancehall, Krump, House and Afrobeats dance artists.
Ten years of day dreaming, 100s of sleepless nights and many flights later, the program is now a massive success, empowering artists and dancers with the necessary tools to make their own dreams come true.
Being speechless has its beauty, but if I want the program to expand and give opportunities to more leaders from the dance industry to rise, I must go on a quest of finding the rights words to describe “it”.
I take a sip of my tea and loudly respond: “YES! YES! Theresa… YES!”. A movement. This actually sounds right.
1000 Pieces Puzzle is about nurturing citizens of the world a.k.a. artists of the world. It is about highlighting the importance of each individual and his/her dreams, it is about reminding artists of the power of their artistic expression and making sure all involved use their creative work to make this world a better world.
1000 Pieces Puzzle is about building a society based on win-win situations. It is about embracing the champion that we are and about boosting the leader within ourselves. It is about supporting others generously and at the same time finding the courage to strive fully for our own ideas to come true.
1000 Pieces Puzzle had nothing to do with me, it was something way beyond the human being that I am. 1000 Pieces Puzzle carries an energy in itself, uplifting, joyful and a strong feeling of being ready to take over the world. It’s a mindset thing, in action, continuously in action, continuously in motion. It is something that happens within the interactions, the exchanges and the collaborations. The energy is created in the space by the dancers, for the dancers. And this energy travels beyond the studio, it has a domino effect and goes beyond the group that we were.
1000 Pieces Puzzle is a movement.
Thank you Theresa,
More blog posts will follow after this first attempt of writing more about 1000 Pieces Puzzle (2017).
***1000 Pieces Puzzle (2017) was presented by Cindy Claes Productions and Zinnema, in association with East London Dance.
***Photo by Alex Rumford.
Looking for 4 additional dancers for a new & refreshing artistic project.
We are looking for dancers who have a strong background in either Hiphop / Dancehall / House / Afrobeats or Krump; to create new dance theatre work exploring the themes of police brutality in Brussels and the Belgian prison system.
We are looking for dancers who:
◇have a strong interest in Hiphop Theatre / Dance Storytelling
◇are passionate about using art to bring social change
◇are eager to use creative platforms to bring new refreshing discussions to the table through art
◇are hungry for professional development
The project will offer:
◇The opportunity to work 2 days with Benji Reid, a U.K. Hiphop Theatre pioneer / choreographer and renown theatre director
◇The opportunity to work alongside Cindy Claes, choreographer based in London
◇professional development for dancers who want to expand their performance skills
◇professional development for emerging choreographers
◇networking opportunities (Zinnema, international dance exchanges, etc.)
The project is unpaid but lunch will be provided during the last week of residency. Cindy Claes Productions (UK) and Timiss (Belgium) have as focus to invest in local upcoming talent, empowering leaders of the future. Our aim is to provide a platform for growth, reflection and artistic expansion for all involved. The project is fully supported and programmed by Zinnema, an arts organisation based in Anderlecht.
Audition & networking workshop:
12th February (morning)
Rehearsals (all day):
from Fri 24th March until Sun 26th March
from Fri 21st April until Fri 28th April
Sat 29th April
How to apply?
Please email TIMISS firstname.lastname@example.org with the following info:
max 500 words to tell us a little bit more about yourself (background and also your motivation!)
a short 3min dance video where we can clearly see your skills (freestyle / choreography / jam / battle videos accepted)
On Tuesday 24th January, I will be performing my new re-branded solo “Things aren’t always black or white”. While I will be warming up back stage, you will stroll into the theatre at 8pm and watch 3 companies perform their new creations at The Place.
This new solo is a political story told through Dancehall and Hiphop, tackling the problems related to the privatisations of prisons.
I performed the piece in front of a few small audiences during the creative process, here is what they had to say:
I have also had the privilege to work with two mentors, Gbemisola Ikumelo, playwright and theatre director, and Frank Wilson, Hiphop Theatre expert:
Coming to the theatre on Tuesday will also mean you’ll get to make new friends, socialize and have a great night out, they got their tickets… are you ready to book yours?!!!
BOOK TICKETS HERE
I am starting the year sweating and rehearsing for my next upcoming solo. Clear your diaries and make sur you are free for…
“Things aren’t always black or white”
TUESDAY 24th JANUARY
at 8pm, The Place
(near Euston tube station)
WHAT INSPIRED “Things aren’t always black or white”?
The story of what and who lead me to create this solo is quite a journey… From NYC to Philadelphia to Brussels, I came across so many signs, people, cold factual information, tears, questions and events that it all had to be translated into a piece.
One of the shocking images that stays in my mind each time I rehearse is… those 50 coffins. Visiting my Krump dance family in Los Angeles in 2016, I saw bout 50 coffins when entering the dance studio…
It was an arts project. Young men who passed away at the hands of police brutality were remembered through colors, collages and graffiti art.
“Things aren’t always black or white” is a Dancehall / Hiphop Theatre piece, a dark poetic dance drama, exploring the themes of police brutality, mass incarceration and the ugly realities of privatized prisons.
My solo performance is part of Resolutions, a triple bill shared with MCDC and Jannick Moth. We are all very eager to bring a raw night of dance theatre to our audiences.
Thank you for your support, looking forward to sharing this piece with you,
I can mess around quite a bit in the studio, new ideas and concepts come and go.
If you wanna know what could happen when the meditative OM goes wrong… watch this video!
Visit the website for information on character exploration workshops.
Just before the summer I was choreographing and coaching singer Lao Ra for her new music video Drum Machine.
The behind the scenes were made of a green screen, loads of costume changes, coaching on movement and facial expressions, make up and hair-did, etc.
Wanna see what that day look like behind the scenes?
Sometimes it is about letting loose and not taking ourselves too seriously.
When you in the studio having a creative block, give yourself a couple of minutes and throw in a character exploration jam…
Which one did you like the most and which character do you want to know more of?
I fell in love with Afrobeats a long time ago.
As a young Belgian Hiphop dancer, I trained and was brought up with the influences of N’Dombolo and Coupe Decale. Since then the term Afrobeats and the scene has gained in popularity and expanded movement vocabulary to cover the practices and rich popular traditons from the whole African continent.
The researcher and passionate artist in me wanted to dig deeper and train, and research, and understand more of this life-fullfilling phenomenon.
Here are a few videos of my journey into Afrobeats, hope you enjoy it! I am forever a student and expanding creativelly!
I also attend regular classes in London taught by Homebros (follow them on social media if you are looking for Afrobeats classes!):
I am passionate about using movement to tell stories, especially when it comes to using dance forms such as Hiphop, Dancehall, Krumping, Afrobeats, etc. in Theatre.
I am an Associate Artist of Faith Drama Productions and our collaborations have been blossoming, booming and flowing since 2008!
Over the last 6 months, I have worked alongside Director Gbemisola Ikumelo as a Movement Director on two new productions. Both plays were hard hitting stories, with movement at it’s heart.
Here are the trailers of THE DEN and CUSTODY: