Re:Imagine India

In 2015 and 2016, Independent Dance embarked on a joint development initiative with Gati Dance Forum, based in New Delhi, which fed contemporary independent dance practice in India and the UK through artistic exchange.

Artists from both countries traveled to take part in projects at GDF and ID, and carry knowledge and inspiration to their local, regional and national dance communities. Residencies, performances, discussions and workshops created opportunities for making, exploration and development. Alongside this, ID and GDF engaged in a programme of mutual organisational development.

We are thrilled to have had the opportunity to work with GDF and its artists, and hope the connection continues in other manifestations.
GDF is an artists initiative founded in 2007 to address a glaring absence of opportunities and infrastructure for independent contemporary dance practice in India. It works to create a uniquely Indian contemporary dance ecology, and our joint project has offered both organisation the chance to enrich and diversify our knowledge-bases through this creative exchange.

The collaboration tested interventions to enhance contemporary independent dance practice in both countries through artistic exchange, and we hope that it will leave a lasting legacy in both countries.

Key exchanges:

December 2015
Emerging artist Mirra visits the UK, taking part in WinLab with Susan Rethorst, performing her piece According to Official Sources… at Independent Dance, and joining the independent artists group LOCUS in Ipswich for an afternoon of practice exchange and discussion.
Click here to read Stephanie Schober’s interview with Mirra.

Spring 2016
Mandeep Raikhy undertook research in India about festival exhibition outside of metropolitan centres.

February 2016
Kirsty Alexander, co-director of ID, visits Gati Dance Forum to discuss and explore approaches to training, artist development and organisational development with Mandeep Raikhy and GDF artists. Outcomes from this exchange are recorded by choreograher and dance film artist Rajyashree Ramamurthi and published online.
Click here for part 1: Artists, Organisations & Ecologies

June 2016
UK-based artist Alicia Kidman joins the Gati Summer Dance Residency 2016, and shares the resulting work in progress at GDF.
Artist Marina Collard attends the residency as a mentor.
Read Alicia’s reflection on the Gati Summer Dance Residency.

July 2016
Established contemporary choreographer Padmini Chettur was planned to visit the UK to lead a three day workshop at Independent Dance and a further engagement in Ipswich. Sadly, due to circumstances beyond our control, this workshop and event had to be cancelled.
We hope to be able to create another opportunity with Padmini in the future.

This project was funded by Arts Council England and British Council.

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