All-male dance show Ignite unites companies YDance and Smallpetitklein
Young show breaks down barriers surrounding boys and dance
Despite some of the most famous dancers in history being male, the dance world still struggles with the misconception that it’s ‘for girls’. The rise of hip hop has done much to address this, but for other dance styles, reaching out to boys and young men is a daily challenge. Having already had some success in this area, contemporary dance companies YDance and Smallpetitklein both applied for funding to take their work further. ‘We wanted to deliver similar projects,’ explains Andy Howitt of YDance, ‘so Creative Scotland (then the Scottish Arts Council) suggested we work together. Like us, Smallpetitklein has a commitment to working with young people, so we were more than happy to join forces to offer boys and young men across Scotland a range of exciting dance experiences.’
Comprising two new works, Touch Paper choreographed by Howitt and Trigger by Thomas Small of Smallpetitklein, IGNITE celebrates the powerful combination of masculinity and dance, and will be performed by an all-male cast. The works themselves blend humour with speed and athleticism – but aside from being entertaining, the whole project has an important agenda.
‘IGNITE is all about breaking down the barriers that typically surround boys and dance,’ says Howatt. ‘And we’ve been reaching out to boys that wouldn’t normally consider dance as an option by running taster sessions led by male dancers, who can also be strong male role models.’
Platform, Glasgow, Fri 29 Oct, then touring