KATY HEWISON

BA (Hons) in Dance (Contemporary)

Katy started studying at NSCD in 2013 when she attended a Summer School and then went on to study on the Foundation Course for Contemporary Dance at NSCD.

Katy is progressing on to the MA Contemporary Dance Performance (Verve) in 2017/18, one of the companies that first inspired her to go into dance.

"There is such a community at NSCD and in Leeds, there are many opportunities and chances to get involved in so many different things in & out of dance! Connections have been growing and growing in Leeds for dance which is great for students, graduates and everyone in the city."

 

Why did you decide to study contemporary dance?

I have always had a creative, curious mind and during high school I did a lot of sport and dance, I saw an advert for NSCD’s summer school with Retina Dance company. Inspired by this and other workshops with Rambert and Jasmin Vardimon I wanted to have more experience in contemporary dance, so I auditioned for Foundation course at NSCD and my journey into dance went from there!!

What do you enjoy about training in Leeds at NSCD?

There is such a community at NSCD and in Leeds, there are many opportunities and chances to get involved in so many different things in & out of dance! Connections have been growing and growing in Leeds for dance which is great for students, graduates and everyone in the city.

What is life as a dance student like?

Busy busy busy! Every day and week is full of new things, learning, getting involved in opportunities, being inspired by performances and meeting people. It is hard work, long days and a lot of commitment – it is incredibly rewarding and is amazing to do what you love every day. I think the more open you are and more you put in the more you will get out, I would say get involved in what you are interested in! You learn to be consistently self-motivated, disciplined, independent, open and inquisitive about everything around you.

 

What are you working on at the moment?

Rehearsal periods are the time of year where you work with a choreographer to create a piece to perform it in the student showcase. It’s such a great time, seeing into each choreographer’s creative process, performing and having the chance to grow and develop in the work during performance across the nights.

NSCD is very supportive to help you organise events and any new initiatives you have. I have loved learning new skills in leadership and event management across the years, they are skills I can take with me in the future and it’s amazing to work alongside a team of students together to make the events happen. We have organised student choreography platforms, solo sharing platforms, networking night & The Conservatoire for Dance and Drama Interdisciplinary Summer Intensive.

Extra Projects- During first year I was very lucky to be involved in a project Dance Whispers, a young choreographers project with Yorkshire Dance, NSCD learning and participation, NYDC at Sadlers Wells. This introduced me to so many networks and further opportunities, I got taught and choreographed on NSCD’s Youth Dance Company for 10 weeks before the piece was performed at Stanley and Audrey Burton Theatre.

After working closely with the Learning and Participation department for this, I continued to assist the Saturday school classes and summer schools. This year I have now been working for L&P as a Saturday school teacher, teaching 5-6 year olds a creative contemporary class.

Working with Learning and Participation has been a part of my time at NSCD which I really love, even the days when I am tired from a crazy week, every Saturday I am reminded of the playfulness in which I can approach dance training, filled with curiosity, inspiration and joy for moving.

 

What are your career goals?

I hope to develop as an artist in many different aspects of work in dance. I’m open to where routes take me, definitely a few career goals are:

Developing Teaching practice: I want to continue developing my teaching practice, working with the community and young people in dance as well as hoping to develop facilitation for improvisation and creative classes.

Movement research & performance: I am curious about improvisation practice and continuing movement research developing and building my movement language which may someday take me into a company, project work or creating and performing solo work maybe!

Future future future: Ambition of mine is to organise and create a creative space for all – to have a studio, one which is full of improvisation and curiosity for all movement. With professionals, community and all ages to have access to creative moving, dancing & training. I hope to continue developing my choreographic work and share my inquisitiveness for art & movement with many many people.

What advice would you give to people thinking of studying contemporary dance?

  • Go for it, try try try! I once never thought I could get into dance training and I am just so so thankful that I auditioned four years ago for FCCD!
  • Audition, audition, audition – you will learn incredible amounts.
  • Seek out what you love- on YouTube, Vimeo, do workshops, travel meet other dancers, do other movement work- somatics, yoga, Pilates, Tai Chi. I think the body is a fascinating thing and we can always continually learn so much.
  • Get involved! So many opportunities will come your way from one step of involvement in something!
  • Enjoy it!! The years will fly by before you know it…