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Project information

Elmhurst School for Dance Choreography Project

Elmhurst wishes to provide our students with the opportunity to work with established dance choreographers who are versed in alternative styles to classical ballet. Students and choreographers will work together to create, develop, practice and publically perform new and unique dance repertoire.

January 2016 - July 2016

Charity information: Elmhurst Ballet School Trust

Elmhurst Ballet School Trust logo
  • Need


    This project will allow Elmhurst students to expand their professional experience by working with unfamiliar choreographers with new ideas and help them to develop their employability as professional dancers. It will also aim to endow Elmhurst with new and unique dance repertoire to be performed in our annual Summer Shows and other public events. The project will extend our students' performance opportunitities, while raising the public and dance-sector profile of the School and our students.


    Working with unfamiliar choreographers will introduce new dance styles to Elmhurst students, teach them to collaborate creatively and develop performance ideas together. This will also encourage them to learn to work with unfamiliar dance professionals, who may also offer them future employment opportunities. By raising the School's profile, this project will also help Elmhurst attract the best dance students from around the world, which will further support employability via peer encouragement.

  • Aims

    Aim 1

    To increase the employability of Elmhurst students when they graduate from the school


    » Working with new choreographers allows students to learn how to interact with unfamiliar professionals while being exposed to new dance opportunities

    What success will look like

    Increased employability of Elmhurst students will be demonstrated by increased numbers taking up employment with high-profile dance companies on graduation from the School

    Aim 2

    Develop new dance repertoire to be performed by Elmhurst students


    » Students and choreographers collaborate creatively to create, develop, practice and publically perform new pieces of work

    What success will look like

    Development of new dance repertoire will be demonstrated by Elmhurst students performing original work to the public by at our Summer Shows and at other performance opportunities

    Aim 3

    To raise the profile of Elmhurst Schoool for Dance with the public and within the dance sector


    » This project will generate media attention and further public performance opportunites that will help to broaden and increase awareness of Elmhurst

    What success will look like

    A raised profile for Elmhurst will be demonstrated by increased media coverage, performance requests and increased numbers of high-quality students applying to train at the School

  • Impact


    In the long term, this project will help Elmhurst to attract the best dance students from around the world to be educated and trained for a professional dancing career. Elmhurst's success in achieving this aspiration will be demonstrated as increased numbers of our graduates achieve principal dancer roles in renowned professional dance companies throughout the world and successfully inhabit these positions by demonstrating their talent in noteworthy performances to audiences internationally


    The main risks are: that the choreographers would not be available at a time that is convenient to the project and that the choreographers and students have difficulty in working successfully together.
    To minimised these potential issues, we are in close contact with choreographers that we would like to use and have highlighted preferable dates to undertake the work. Choreographers have also been chosen due to their skill in engaging with performers and will be overseen by our Artistic Director


    Elmhurst will invite donors to observe sessions when the choreographers are working with Elmhurst students, as well as to performances of the new repertoire at the 2016 Elmhurst Summer Shows. In addition, written and illustrated reports will be sent to donors on the completion of the project

  • Budget

    Budget - Project Cost: £8,000

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      Amount Heading Description
      £4,000 Choreographers' Fees Fees charged by two seperate choreographers to develop new work at Elmhurst Schhol for Dance
      £2,000 Travel & living expenses Accommodation, travel and living expenses for two choreographers
      £2,000 Additional project costs Practice and rehearsal costs (including piano accompaniment); costumes; lighting and production cost
  • Background


    Elmhurst School for Dance is a world-renowned centre of excellence, based in Birmingham, for the training and education of classical ballet dancers. Our provision includes giving students a sound knowledge of classical ballet and allied dance genres, high-quality academic education and a principled and caring living environment. Elmhurst is unique among UK ballet schools due to our West Midlands-based regional approach, which is emphasised by our close association with Birmingham Royal Ballet


    Young people (85% of whom require financial assistance to train at this vocational dance school and 16% of whom would receive free meals in mainstream schooling) join Elmhurst from eleven years old and graduate at nineteen. 125 students presently live on-site during term time and a further sixty live in the locality. In the 2014/15 academic year, 18% were from the West Midlands, 23% from London and the South East, 12% from abroad and the remaining students were from the rest of the UK.

  • Why Us?

    Why Us?

    Elmhurst School for Dance is the only purpose-built vocational dance school in Europe, with a theatre, seven dance studios, academic classrooms and on-site accommodation. We have invited guest choreographers (such as Ruth Brill and Paul Rooney) to work with small groups of students previously. As this initiative proved successful, we would like to expand its scope to include larger groups of students working with choreographers who work predominantly with dance companies from outside the UK

    Read more about the Charity running this project.


    Robert Parker

    Robert Parker is Elmhurst's Artistic Director and will oversee this project. He joined Elmhurst in 2012, after retiring from Birmingham Royal Ballet

Elmhurst School for Dance