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Trinity Laban staff and alumni contribute to seminal dance book

Wed 26 February 2020

The Routledge Companion to Dance Studies has been co-edited by Helen Thomas and Stacey Prickett and includes contributions by several Dance Faculty Members and former students.

Aimed at scholars and upper-level students of dance and performance studies, the newly published Routledge Companion to Dance Studies is a comprehensive guide to key features of dance studies as the field stands today, while pointing to potential future developments.

The book’s 33 chapters, arranged in seven sections, consider everything from training and engagement, to society and culture and have been co-edited by Editor in Chief for Dance Research Journal and Trinity Laban’s Professor of Dance Studies Helen Thomas, and Dr Stacey Prickett, Reader at University of Roehampton’s Centre for Dance Research and Trinity Laban alumnus. Helen studied at the Laban Art of Movement Studio, before gaining a PhD in Sociology from Goldsmiths University of London.

Amongst the diverse group of contributors are Trinity Laban’s own Head of Dance Science Professor Emma Redding (‘The Expanding Possibilities of Dance Science’), and lecturer Alison Curtis-Jones (‘Re-Imagining Laban: Tradition, Extinction, Invention. Re-Staging as Creative Contemporary Practice’).

Professor Emma Redding comments – 

I was delighted to be invited by the editors to contribute to this important book. The inclusion of a chapter on dance science within a dance studies textbook is significant. Not only does it demonstrate the extent to which the field of dance science has grown but also how it has become a recognised and permanent area of discourse for anyone studying dance.”

Former Programme Leader for the MA/MFA Creative Practice Dr Becka McFadden has submitted ‘Stacking the Spine: Interdisciplinary Reflections from Backstories’, alum Larraine Nicholas has penned ‘Female Dancers on the Variety Stage in Mid-Twentieth-Century Britain’, and Johan Stjernholm, who graduated with a Masters in European Dance Theatre Practice in 2003, has written ‘The Scenography of Choreographing the Museum’.

Alum and current Programme Leader for the MA/MFA Creative Practice Dr Naomi Lefebvre Sell has authored the chapter ‘Moving as a Thought Process: The Practice of choreography and Stillness’ with alumni Tara Silverthorn and Lucille Teppa.

Co-editors Helen Thomas and Stacey Prickett comment –

“The diversity of artist voices is unique, as performers, teachers, historians and choreographers interrogate dance and the body through a wide range of analytical discourses, including anthropology, history, psychology, cultural studies and sociology. There is a strong emphasis on challenging academic hierarchies though giving voice to those often deemed as ‘other’.”

Dean of Dance Frances Clarke comments –

“This new guide is an important addition to the divergent areas of discourse in the current field of dance studies and reflects the ever-changing facets of our art form. A number of Trinity Laban dance staff have contributed to chapters in the book and this is testimony to the wide range of research and acknowledged expertise in our Faculty of Dance.”

The launch of the book was hosted at our Faculty of Dance on Thursday 23 January.

For more info, visit the Routledge website

To find out more about studying Dance at Trinity Laban, visit