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Dance agencies and other arts organisations offer a range of professional development support.

You can find a list of regional dance agencies on the One Dance UK website.

The following list shows some of the commissioning and professional development opportunities available to dance artists and choreographers.

Dance agencies and other arts organisations offer a range of professional development support. You can find a list of regional dance agencies on the One Dance UK website.

The following list shows some of the commissioning and professional development opportunities available to dance artists and choreographers.


2 Faced Dance Company


  • A career development programme for UK based, mid-career female choreographers (working in any genre) running from 2015-18
  • Developed in response to concerns about the lack of equality currently faced by female choreographers within the contemporary dance sector
  • Provides choreographers with a series of masterclasses, training sessions, ongoing mentoring and opportunities to connect with venues, programmers and commissioners, with the aim of equipping choreographers with the skills and confidence to compete equally for high profile commissions and a bursary per candidate to contribute towards expenses
  • One choreographer each year will have a further opportunity to have their work commissioned and performed by a national dance company


Yorkshire Dance

Sketch – artist development programme

  • This dance agency for Yorkshire has a number of professional development opportunities that take place on an annual basis, most of which are open to artists living, working and contributing to the development of the sector in the Yorkshire region
  • One of the ways they support dance makers is through Sketch, which is a 6-month development opportunity for dance makers with an interest in developing a new dance idea with a focus on dramaturgical practice


Pavilion Dance South West

Shift and Share

  • During its pilot phase, from 2014-16, Shift and Share opened up opportunities for three dance companies to share new work across a wide South West venue network
  • Seeking to continue with a commissioning and touring strand dependent on funding


Without Walls

Open Call for Artists

  • Without Walls is a consortium of leading arts organisations and festivals that offers commissions and touring opportunities for new outdoor work
  • Through their Open Call, artists and companies from any discipline are invited to request support for the creation and touring of new outdoor work 



Wiltons Strike! Dance Festival

  • Selected choreographers are commissioned to develop their work to performance level, with mentoring from professionals
  • The works are showcased in front of a live audience at the hall during the festival in May, as well as being live-streamed online


Dance City

Commissioning Programme

  • Dance City’s commissioning programme encourages the development of new work from formative, R&D based short pieces through to full length performance pieces. Commissions are available to North East based dance-makers only
  • The commissions offer: £1500 funding; studio space at Dance City; advice and support with funding applications, producing, technical and marketing; access to other opportunities coordinated by Dance City e.g. intensive workshops, visiting choreographers, mentoring



Derby Festé 

  • Festé is managed as a partnership between Déda, Derby LIVE, Derby QUAD and Derby Theatre
  • Taking place in September, the festival presents a programme of outdoor arts, visual and digital arts, performance, circus and music, with an emphasis on the family audience
  • Derby Festé 2016 offered a commission for locally based artists for a static or walkabout piece to be performed during the Festé weekend
  • The successful project was assigned a mentor from the Festé Programme Group to contribute in the development of the work
  • Visit the Derby Festé website to sign up to the newsletter for news on Festé 2017 


New Adventures Choreographer Award

New Adventures Choreographer Award (NACA)

  • A platform for new choreographic talent, the biennial £40,000 award is run by the charitable arm of New Adventures, Re:Bourne, who provide support on budgeting, publicity, contracting, fundraising and tour booking


Ignition Dance Festival

Ignition Dance Festival is commissioned by the Royal Borough of Kingston and produced by DanceWest. It is a dance festival for the whole of West London, with professional choreographic and community dance showcases that take place at the Rose Theatre, Kingston and Lyric Hammersmith.

Ignition Choreographers Platform

  • Applications are accepted from experienced and mid-career choreographers and dance artists based in the UK to create new works across seven scaled commissions
  • All dance styles and genres are welcomed
  • The commissioned choreographers are offered the opportunity to work across two venues, as well as access to a supportive professional development package

Bursaries for emerging choreographers and emerging dance companies

  • The bursary would appeal to emerging choreographers and dance companies that are looking are looking to respond to a brief, build performance history and gain experience of creating work for a festival


The Place

Rural Dance Touring Initiative

  • A three-year project (currently in its second year) to stimulate the touring and making of dance for rural areas
  • Initiated jointly by the National Rural Touring Forum (NRTF), The Place, Take Art and China Plate, and funded by Arts Council England through their Strategic Touring programme
  • Up to eight artists/companies with existing shows will be chosen in this call-out for artists to tour existing shows to rural locations in autumn 2017 and/or spring 2018 (the deadline for applications for this call out was midnight on Wednesday 31 August 2016)
  • Companies will receive a fee per performance and there are small bursaries available for artists to make adaptations to shows to make them more appropriate for the practical challenges of rural touring

The Place Prize for dance

  • Held biennially, The Place Prize for dance is a major source of commissioning funds and production support for new short works in the UK
  • A call for entries invites UK-based dance makers to propose their idea for an original work of up to 20 minutes in length
  • Commissioned entries are presented at The Place and assessed by judging panels and the votes of the audience
  • Over a series of Finals performances, nightly prizes of £1,000 are awarded to the work winning the most audience votes. At the conclusion of each Place Prize, the judges choose one work to win £25,000 and the title of “The Place Prize winner” for its creator
  • The entry deadline for the two-year cycle for each edition of The Place Prize is February


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