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February Alumni Round-up

Thu 5 March 2020

Our roundup of some of the achievements of Trinity Laban alumni

Both staff and alumni have seen huge successes this month in music and dance. At The Bonnies 2020, choreographer, performer and writer Janine Harrington received the New Choreography award while a Choreographic Development award went to dance teacher and choreographer Julie Cunningham.

Alum and faculty staff member Martin Speake embarked on a UK tour with the Martin Speake International Quartet. Read this great review of the jazz ensemble’s performance at Royal Birmingham Conservatoire.

We hosted the official book launch of The Routledge Companion to Dance Studies, co-edited by two Trinity Laban alumni: our Professor of Dance Studies Helen Thomas and Reader at University of Roehampton, Dr Stacey Prickett. Also contributing research and discussion to the seminal dance book were alumni Larraine Nicholas and Johan Stjernholm.

Acclaimed pianist Iyad Sughayer received a five-star review in BBC Music Magazine for his interpretations of some of Khachaturian’s earliest music, while fellow piano alum Christina McMaster launched new project Art of Listening. In this YouTube series, Christina performs and sheds further light on the works of prolific composers such as Satie, Scarlatti and Birtwistle.

The film adaptation of classic tale The Call of the Wild was released in cinemas worldwide, featuring an original score from Hollywood film composer John Powell. Find out more in this insightful article exploring John’s music.

February saw Trinity Laban welcome back alumni both emerging and eminent. Ching-Chun Lee, alum and Associate Artistic Director of Cloud Gate Dance Theatre of Taiwan, delivered masterclasses to dance students following an evening celebrating Cloud Gate’s founder, Lin Hwai-min.

Sharing more alumni wisdom over at our Music Faculty, Cevanne Horrocks-Hopayian provided insights into her varied career as a composer, performer and producer in a careers talk, while internationally renowned pianist Gen Li joined us in the latest instalment of our alumni spotlight video series.

This month dance alumni showcased work both close to home and worldwide. At the Laban Building, we held 2020’s first instalment of alumni performance platform Bite Size Pieces. Featuring performances from Daisy Farris, Elise Phillips, Kate Brown and Aline Derderian, the four alumni choreographers received feedback on works in process from both faculty staff and audience members.

Dance alum Christopher Tandy performed at Sadler’s Wells in the title role of Pina Bausch’s legendary production of Bluebeard. Read this glowing review of the performance, premiering in London more than 40 years after its inception.

Malik Nashad Sharpe (marikiscrycrycry) presented original performance piece He’s Dead at The Yard Theatre, combining dance, text, live action and sound.

Candoco Dance Company returned to the Laban Building this month for a double bill of performances. Featuring several Trinity Laban alumni, the collective performed works by Yasmeen Godder and Theo Clinkard.

Over in Ireland, Michelle Cahill began touring her first solo show, Thirteen Steps to the Attic. Based on true events, the performance explored the mind of a woman trapped in an attic with only letters and her imagination for company.

Close-harmony trio The Puppini Sisters announced their upcoming UK Spring tour, while dramatic soprano Madeleine Bradbury-Rance took Trinity Laban talent across the pond, performing with the LA Philharmonic Orchestra at the illustrious Walt Disney Concert Hall alongside a host of international stars.

Musical Theatre alum Jack McCann starred in the Belfast Lyric Theatre’s run of Kiss Me, Kate in the role of Bill Cahoun. Read this review of the “dazzling and sharp-edged” production.

Back in London, Lucy Drever was announced in the cast of the London Palladium concert performance of The Secret Garden. Making her West-End debut, Lucy will perform as the Narrator alongside the Trinity Laban Musical Theatre students making up the ensemble.

This month, alumni explored environmental concerns through their art. Exhibiting work at the Gerald Moore Gallery, dance artist Laura Rouzet was selected by young students as one of a number of artists to create work responding to the climate crisis. Jazz musician Oscar Jerome released new single Sun For Someone: a poignant but interrogative comment on the threats that face our planet.

Many more jazz alumni saw successes this February. Cherise launched her EP ‘Paradise’ at Kings Place while jazz septet MoonMot released their latest album Going Down the Well. Read this interview with alum Dee Byrne, discussing the album and the band’s origins.

Moses Boyd continued touring the UK with material from latest album, Dark Matter. Moses’ album was met with stellar reviews from music outlets such as NME, while Bassist and alum Daniel Casimir received acclaim for new release These Days in collaboration with vocalist Tess Hirst.

Two ensembles featuring Trinity Laban alumni were celebrated at the Urban Music Awards 2020. Ezra Collective won Best Jazz Act out of a shortlist which included Joe Armon-Jones and Camilla George, while Best Group went to KOKOROKO.

Kairos 4Tet and jazz vocalist Emilia Mårtensson joined forces in a performance at Stapleford Granary. Find out how to get your tickets for their next performance together in Bristol.

Alumni have been continuing to enrich local communities with their art this month. Lynette King’s Spin Off Dance Company brought their show The Love Letter to the Ed Sheeran Exhibition Space at Christchurch Mansion. Find out more about Lynette’s dance practice and her work with young people with learning disabilities.

Emily Jenkins’ Move Dance Feel teamed up with leading cancer charity Penny Brohn UK to provide a free dance taster session for women affected by cancer. Combining creative movement activities with opportunities for interaction and reflection, the session aimed to help participants find freedom in their bodies and gain confidence in their abilities.

Making opera more accessible, vocal alum John Savournin brought a whistle-stop version of classic opera The Marriage of Figaro to audiences across the UK. Read this great review of John’s 45-minute adaptation, performed at the Lawrence Batley Theatre in Huddersfield.

Coming Up

Featuring vocal alum Mairéad Carlin, the Celtic Woman 2020 tour is now underway. Find out where you can see the ensemble in concert over the next six months.

Our Carne Trust Ensemble in Residence, the Carducci Quartet, will welcome pianist and fellow alum Reiko Fujisawa in a performance at Southbank Centre. Book your tickets for this exciting evening of music, featuring piano quintets from Shostakovich and Schumann.

Harriet Waghorn’s EDIFICE Dance Theatre will present SALOMÉ at The Place on Tuesday 10 March.

The Bristol International Jazz and Blues Festival 2020 is back from 26-29 March. Find out when you can catch alumni Rebecca Nash, Emilia Martensson and Kairos 4tet in performances across the city.

Elisabeth Schilling and Margarita Zafrilla Olayon will perform at Siobhan Davies Studios’ Open Choreography performance evening on Friday 06 March.

Composer Hollie Harding will premier her new work FERAL at LSO St Luke’s 16 May as part of the LSO Jerwood Composer+ Showcase.