Dance group has come a long way

Rachel Birch, one of Dansformation's lead dancers.
Rachel Birch, one of Dansformation's lead dancers.
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Performing in front of thousands at Alnwick’s Olympic Torch ceremony and selling out shows during a debut tour – it’s been a memorable few years for a north Northumberland-based dance and movement company.

And with aspirations of taking the tour further afield, including to Norway, the future looks just as bright for Dansformation.



Based in Alnwick, the group is run by Emma Dunn and has gone from strength to strength since she came up with the concept in 2005 and took part in her first project in South Africa two years later.

Currently, she is embarking on her first tour – showcasing Northumbriana around the North East and West of England. Created in 2012 by Emma, the production has been reworked so that smaller village halls and community venues can enjoy a vision of Northumberland through a beautiful and accessible dance performance.

It brings an experienced team of creative collaborators from the North East, including Ruairi Hardman (film), Alistair Anderson (music composition), Paul Shriek (costume) and Katrina Porteous (poetry), together with dancers Rachel Birch, Anthony Lo-Giudice and Catherine Muckle.

Impressively, the performance at Howick Village Hall that took place yesterday was sold out well in advance. It is a running theme for the tour.

Emma, 39, said: “I am very happy that the tour has gone well. Getting Northumbriana on tour is a real achievement and we hope to tour this work around the country, and possibly even to Norway.

“We will also be making some more work in the future.”

Dansformation isn’t just about working with live music and film in collaboration with composers and film-makers.

Emma is also passionate about the community and the organisation works around Northumberland every week with groups of all ages.

“We believe dance, movement and creativity is for everyone and work hard to make it accessible for all,” said Emma. “I want Dansformation to offer creative information and how we can communicate through dance, movement, music and film.”