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Luca Silvestrini awarded prestigious Italian theatre critics’ prize

Fri 11 December 2020

Luca Silvestrini, the Artistic Director of Protein Dance, has been awarded the Associazione Nazionale Critici di Teatro (ANCT)’s annual prize in recognition of his company’s work in championing diversity and foregrounding unheard voices.

The awards, presented each year by Italy’s national association of theatre critics, celebrate the vitality of the performing arts sector, and show appreciation for the work of creatives in the industry.

A distinctive voice in British dance theatre, Luca Silvestrini’s Protein is known for combining choreography, text, humour and social commentary to present the everyday in revealing and subversive ways.

Through the company’s Real Life Real Dance programme, Luca has created ground-breaking, participatory performance opportunities for disadvantaged and disengaged people, including young people in alternative provision schools, hospitals, refugees, asylum seekers and migrants.

During their 21st anniversary year, the company have continued to innovate and to work together with the community in response to the restrictions caused by the pandemic. This includes celebrating with Protein21, a digital programme that has encompassed reflections on the company’s past work, a chance to view past repertoire via regular streams and new work responding to recent events.

Among those to take part in Protein21 Reimagine, were Trinity Laban’s Boundless group for over 50s, who form part of the conservatoire’s Inspired Not Tired programme for older adults. Led by dance artist Stella Howard, participants devised ‘With My Hands I Remember’, a reimagining of Protein’s Dear Body. The project encouraged them to reflect and explore their relationships with their own bodies.

On receiving the prestigious award Luca comments –

“I am delighted and honoured to have received this prestigious award from my country of origin, Italy. This is a wonderful climax to Protein’s year-long 21st anniversary celebrations, and it’s a great testimony to everything the company has achieved so far. As well as thanking ANCT for their commitment to celebrating our industry at a moment of great challenge and uncertainty, I wish to thank all Protein’s Italian partners and audiences, in particular Marche Teatro for their ongoing and invaluable support.”

Born in Italy, Luca moved to London in 1995 and started his full-time dance training at Trinity Laban (then the Laban Centre) on the one-year Professional Diploma in Dance Studies aged 28. He then joined Transitions Dance Company, graduating in 1997.

Find out more about studying Dance at Trinity Laban.