This April, Birmingham will become home to the world's leading dancers, dance groups and choreographers as part of the second International Dance Festival Birmingham (IDFB 2010). The festival will see a line-up of exciting performances and participatory events, encouraging the public to put on their dancing shoes.
Driven by DanceXchange and Birmingham Hippodrome, IDFB 2010 will see over 70 performances take place across Birmingham and the West Midlands from 19 April - 15 May, with over 25 companies representing 20 countries from around the world.
IDFB is the region's largest dance festival and is funded by Advantage West Midlands, Arts Council England West Midlands and Birmingham City Council, with sponsorship from investment managers Brewin Dolphin.
Highlights from this year's festival include an opening performance of 'L'allegro, il penseroso ed il Moderato' by the Mark Morris Dance Group, which will see 24 dancers perform alongside the orchestra of the English National Opera in their only UK tour date outside of London. One of the world's most prestigious ballet companies, Ballet Nacional de Cuba, will be making their Birmingham debut in their first ever UK tour, bringing their unparalleled technique to two programmes of 'Giselle' and 'Magia de la Danza', with guest appearances by Carlos Acosta.
Also taking place throughout the festival will be a new solo Kathak work by acclaimed choreographer Akram Khan; an awe-inspiring circus performance from C!RCA; daring acrobatics in Comphania de DanÃ§a Deborah Colker's 'Cruel'; and a stunning dance piece from 17 monks from the Shaolin Temple, China in 'Sutra'. Strictly Come Dancing - The Professionals will also perform at Birmingham Hippodrome as part of the festival, bringing true glitz and glamour to the stage.
IDFB 2010 will host the world premiere of Rosie Kay Dance Company's '5 SOLDIERS: The Body is the Frontline', a thought-provoking look at the importance of the body in modern warfare. A unique collaboration between Birmingham-based Rosie Kay, artist David Cotterrell and theatre director Walter Meierjohann, 5 SOLDIERS follows on from Rosie's time spent with The 4th Battalion The Rifles.
This year's festival line-up also includes 'Outspoken', a weekend of new performances from Middle Eastern and North African artists, curated by Eckhard Thiemann and featuring a number of UK premieres. Ex-Riverdance star, Birmingham-born Colin Dunne will be returning to the city to present his first full-length solo show 'Out of Time', a playful, contemporary homage to the step-dance tradition that has shaped his life.
In addition to this, IDFB 2010 will host a number of free public participation events, including a mass line-dance 'Put Your Foot Down' at the Bullring and a folk dance for the 21st Century, 'United Colours of Dance', which will take over the city's Victoria Square.
David Massingham, Artistic Director of DanceXchange and Co-Artistic Director of IDFB 2010, said:
“Once again Birmingham will be showcasing some of the finest international talent from a broad range of dance styles; whether ballet, flamenco, contemporary, ballroom, street or jazz, there's something for everyone. This year's event represents over 20 countries from across six continents, reinforcing Birmingham's growing reputation as a world stage.”
Stuart Griffiths, Chief Executive of Birmingham Hippodrome and Co-Artistic Director of IDFB 2010, added:
“More than ever dance is broadening its appeal across the generations, encompassing everything from essential Saturday night television and award-winning new works, to dance classes, school projects and community performances. We are very excited about this year's festival line-up, as well as some of the fantastic partner venues we are working with.”
For more information on IDFB 2010 and the line-up, visit www.idfb.co.uk.
For all press enquiries, please contact Tara Tomes at Rewired PR:
0121 236 2132
07966 884 659
Notes to Editors
- IDFB 2010 is produced by DanceXchange and Birmingham Hippodrome.
- DanceXchange is a power house of dance housed in Birmingham Hippodrome complex. The organisation brings together dance artists, companies, educators and venues in the promotion of dance activity, education and performances for people of all ages, abilities and cultural backgrounds.
- Birmingham Hippodrome is the busiest single theatre in the UK, welcoming c500,000 paying visitors every year. It is unique in being the home of a classical ballet company, Birmingham Royal Ballet and a national dance development agency, DanceXchange. Birmingham Hippodrome sells more seats for dance than any other theatre outside London.
- IDFB 2010 is funded by Advantage West Midlands, Arts Council England West Midlands and Birmingham City Council. The corporate sponsor for the 2010 festival is Brewin Dolphin.
- Advantage West Midlands is the Regional Development Agency (RDA) for the West Midlands region - one of nine RDAs in England established to transform English regions through sustainable economic development. Advantage West Midlands takes the lead role in setting the strategy and focus for regional economic improvement; building the partnerships needed to achieve the region's vision; and ensuring that public money is targeted to those activities and projects best placed to make a real difference.
- Brewin Dolphin is one of the UK’s largest independent private client investment managers. The firm is supporting the event to further build a bridge between the city's thriving professional community and its innovative arts offering.
- Additional partners for the festival include BBC WM and Crowne Plaza Birmingham.
- Venues hosting IDFB 2010 include Birmingham Hippodrome, Birmingham Repertory Theatre, The Patrick Centre, Town Hall Birmingham and Ikon Eastside, as well as a number of specialist and outdoor spaces.
- IDFB first took place in 2008 and saw almost 25,000 people watch over 60 performances.
- IDFB 2010 is working in partnership with the West Midlands Culture Programme for London 2012, along with a range of other exciting programmes including People Dancing, to celebrate and engage people with the region's world-class cultural offer. www.wmfor2012.com
- World Dance Day takes place during the festival on 29 April 2010