Trinity Laban Innovation Award is an exciting opportunity for final-year undergraduates to pitch an idea for an original project.
We support successful candidates to turn their idea into a reality by providing funding, mentoring from Trinity Laban alumni, and expert guidance from industry professionals.
Launched in 2019 and open to all final-year undergraduate students at the Conservatoire, the competition provides a unique opportunity for emerging artists to access a financial award and bespoke professional development support from TL Alumni as they establish themselves within one of the fastest growing sectors of the UK economy.
The Trinity Laban Innovation Award is made possible by The Higher Education Innovation Fund (HEIF).
Catch up with the 2021 recipients…
Born in London, Anna graduated with a BA (Hons) Contemporary Dance. Alongside her training, she has worked with the Royal Academy of Dance, Candoco Dance Company and Lea Anderson, as well as supporting young people with various disabilities and backgrounds.
Anna used her Trinity Laban Innovation Award to set up Hallomai Dance, a community driven company – currently working on interactive outdoor dance performances for all ages. They performed at the Wandsworth Arts Fringe in Battersea in June 2022.
“The Trinity Laban Innovation Award has allowed me to step into the dance industry with confidence and encouragement. It has hugely shaped my early professional development in these early stages and, has allowed my company Hallomai Dance to connect with communises across London. ”
Anna was mentored by Japanese inclusive dance artist, performer, choreographer, dance movement psychotherapist and TL alum Takeshi Matsumoto.Explore Hallomai Dance
Before she began studying on the Jazz course at Trinity Laban, Myra Brownbridge was awarded an education strongly rooted in European Classical music at the Purcell School. She is passionate about working in ensembles both large and small, arranging and writing, and is an educator working regularly alongside National Youth Jazz Orchestra and Tomorrow’s Warriors.
Myra used her Trinity Laban Innovation Award to help fund the creation of her debut studio album alongside musicians from across the UK and featuring Tony Kofi. She recorded five original compositions and a couple of short, improvised interludes at Strongroom Studios recording with eight different musicians, some of which are Trinity Laban alumni.
“Without the Trinity Laban Innovation Award, I would not have been able to launch my career in the way that I have done over the past year since graduating and it really kickstarted my career both financially and in my confidence, knowing that I had the support and that belief in my idea was hugely beneficial.”
Myra was mentored by multi-award-winning saxophonist, conductor and arranger and TL alum Phil Meadows.
Emma Greene and Sunniva Moen Rørvik
Dancers Emma and Sunniva met studying on the BA (Hons) Contemporary Dance programme at Trinity Laban. Their company Back on The Map Project is centred around creating engaging artistic experiences for young people that highlight a wide and diverse history of dance.
Since receiving the Trinity Laban Innovation Award their project, The History of Dance of the African diaspora: A Festival for the young people of Deptford, has made important developments. They have expanded to not just focus on working with young people but also the elderly, to add an intergenerational element to their work, and have led several successful workshops within the local community including dance workshops with children, movement warmups with elderly people and dance classes at local primary schools.
“The Trinity Laban Innovation award gave us the opportunity to make important connections within the local community. The support from our mentor really helped us to take on this new challenge with confidence and we are forever grateful for the opportunities that we have had since receiving the award.”
Emma and Sunniva were mentored by TL alum, Independent Arts and Events Manager and co-founder of Black Artists in Dance Joyce Gyimah.
Sula Castle, Roseann Dendy and Daze Hingorani-Short
Tough Boys Dance Collective
Sula, Roseann and Daze are three dance artists who studied BA (Hons) Contemporary Dance. With their collective, Tough Boys Dance Collective, they aim to make works that are both important to them as artists and that bring joy and inclusion to their community.
Having the backing of the Trinity Laban Innovation Award gave people confidence in their collective and made their project, DJ as Witness, possible.
“The Trinity Laban Innovation Award was the perfect stepping stone as an emerging collective. The prospect of graduating can be daunting to begin making a reality of your ideas, but the support provided by the award and our mentor was instrumental to our growing success.”
Sula, Roseann and Daze were mentored by London-based Polish/German interdisciplinary artist, performer, creative producer, activist, a Purple Lady and TL alum Dagmara Bilon.Discover Tough Boys Dance Collective
Harpist Laudine completed her BMus at Trinity Laban, studying with Gabriella Dall’Olio and Frances Kelly. She performs regularly as a soloist, chamber musician and with orchestras and is a member of the vocal and harp quintet Levedy, comprised of four singers and harp. The ensemble won the Carne Trust Chamber Music Competition in October 2020.
For her project Alone, Together, Laudine commissioned female composer Shaye Poulton Richards to write a song cycle for Levedy, and organised two concerts in the UK, one in Cambridge and one in London to premiere this work.
“The Trinity Laban Innovation Award allowed me to bring to life my first big creative project. I can’t wait to use the skills that I learnt thanks to the award and the mentoring process in future projects as well.”
Laudine was mentored by experimental composer, artist and performer and TL alum Caitlin Rowley.Watch Levedy perform 'Alone, Together'
Musical Theatre graduate Emily combines her love of performing with teaching and working with children.
Emily has used the Trinity Laban Innovation Award to run a series of musical theatre masterclasses in south east London primary schools.
“The Trinity Laban Innovation Award has allowed me to explore an avenue that I have always wanted to try. I now have the confidence in myself to believe I can do it and it has given me more opportunities to consider my future!”
Emily was mentored by TL Music Theatre alum and primary school teacher Annabel Langley.
- Performer and arranger Gabriel Askew created the first video in Big Smoke Brass UK’s new collaborative digital series which saw the band collaborate across genres with different artists including dancers and choreographers. Gabriel was mentored by TL alum Matthew Roberts, trumpeter, composer, conductor and Member of Gentleman’s Dub Club.
- Musical Theatre alum Hayley Hugget, worked with TL alum Jessica Santer, Head of Creative Learning at Southbank Centre to set up Tilley Peacock Productions, an innovative theatre company working to produce original productions and workshops for children with Special Educational Needs and Disability, which included an online animated version of her original musical Dotty’s Dilemma.
- Double bassist Jess Price planned to present Eruption, an event series drawing on traditional practices and themes to produce new music and dance work showcasing the benefits of classical music training within non-traditional contexts. Due to Covid restrictions, Eruption was postponed and instead, Jess moved forward with creating promotional resources with her pyrotechnic performance group Black Magma. Jess was mentored by TL alum and singer Georgi Mottram, who is Director of leading classical crossover group Ida Girls London.
- Relying exclusively on cycling, ben leigh grosart travelled from the northernmost point of England to the southernmost to record collaborative album root, bringing together different artists from a wide range of places and backgrounds to reflect the current sound and feel of England. ben was mentored by TL alum Will Dutta, the curating composer and Head of Artist Development at Sound and Music.
- In collaboration with the London Wildlife Trust, contemporary dance artist Hannah Wallace created Groundmarks. The site-specific dance performance project in Sydenham Hill Woods explored the experience of the moving, sensing body within a constantly evolving landscape. Hannah was mentored by TL alum London-based dancer, writer, and teacher Carolyn Roy.
- Danish dance artist and emerging choreographer Laura Rønning Engholm has created dance company Engholm Danseteater and is developing her inclusive dance practice aimed at engaging with those affected by homelessness and hidden homelessness.
- Composer Toby Carswell and percussionist Rhys Davies established The Public Bungalow, a vibrant ensemble of young professional artists whose sophisticated arrangements re-imagine pop music with a fusion twist. They were mentored by Max De Lucia, founding Partner and Client Director at sonic branding agency DLMDD.
- Composer, musician and artist James Layton founded Into the Ocean, a London-based recording and concert series showcasing experimental new music including an album of works for solo viola in collaboration with Stephen Upshaw. He was mentored by Composer Edward Henderson, part of composition collective Bastard Assignments.
- Mentored by freelance dance film programmer Gitta Wigro, multicultural all-female dance collective Mass Hysteria created work for Tate Modern, The Place’s Resolution Festival 2020 and V&A’s Friday Late series.
- Jazz vocalist Sahra Gure wrote, produced and self-released her celebrated debut EP Love Me With Me. Sahra was mentored by Cimeon Ellerton, Co-founder and Executive Director of creative studio and social enterprise Social Convention.
- Mentored by Richard Meads, Orchestra and Music Department Director at English National Opera, flautist and conductor Megan Storer established Cinematic Syncopations Orchestra as a platform for graduate players in London and to introduce a young audience to orchestral music through the performance of film scores.
- Violinist Matthew Crisp worked with mentor Jennifer Raven, Co-founder of FairBeats and Deputy Director at Sound Connections, to strategise ways to introduce youth orchestra musicians to the power of music in community settings such as primary schools, care homes and hospitals.