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Work experience week - Kate

Friday March 22nd 2024Share page

I’m Kate Ovington, a third-year contemporary dance student studying for my BA (Hons) in Professional Dance at Dance City, originally from and currently based in Newcastle. Going into my degree placement with balletLORENT, I was very interested in gaining an understanding of what goes into the production of dance performance work and how the company operates day-to-day. The structure of my placement has allowed me to gain a multi-disciplinary perspective on this through working with multiple departments within the company.

The majority of my placement so far has surrounded the revival of The Velveteen Rabbit as the company prepares for its small-scale tour. By observing rehearsals, I have gained knowledge of the differentiation strategies that go into developing performance work for young children and families, seeing two versions of the piece and its interactive components. Furthermore, throughout the week, I have been involved in the development of the set; sewing together the stage borders, researching external influences for props, and constructing parts of the set to hold extra storage. This has allowed me to see how dance work can be expanded on and developed throughout the entire choreographic process and how such small details in the set can make a difference in the well-roundedness of what both an audience gets out of a piece and the dancers themselves.

I had the opportunity to work with balletLORENT’s youth company, Dance Creative class, and the Knitters, Movers, and Shakers group. This has given me hands-on experience in expanding my pedagogical practice and further given me insight into the community that brings balletLORENT together.

I am so grateful to balletLORENT for the opportunity to do this placement and for being so welcoming. Being from Newcastle, it has been amazing to see such a nurturing environment for upcoming dance talent within an active company in the region. This placement has very much allowed me to gain insight into how working companies operate in preparation for performance work, but also in the ways in which relationships with the community and between staff can be the backbone of successful art.