Thursday 15th February 2024, 4:18pm Alumni cast in Gary Clarke’s newest production: DETENTION

Image: Gary Clarke's award-winning COAL (2018)

We are proud to announce that four NSCD graduates - Gavin Coward, Imogen Wright, Alex Gosmore and Mayowa Ogunnaike have been selected to perform in DETENTION – the eagerly-anticipated, forthcoming production from Gary Clarke Company, due to premiere and tour nationally from Spring 2025.

DETENTION will be the final part in a trilogy of theatrical dance works, following the multi-award-winning production COAL (Winner of a UK Theatre Award and a Critics Circle National Dance Award) and the critically-acclaimed production WASTELAND.

Taking the controversial Section 28 of the 1988 UK Local Government Act as its starting point, DETENTION will examine the direct impact this aspect of UK Law had on LGBTQ+ communities nationwide.  Using real-life stories and testimonies, this thrilling yet deeply touching production will bring together a cast of five exceptional dancers and a local LGBTQ+ community cast.

Gary Clarke, himself a former student of NSCD said:

“We had over 400 applications to audition. We were looking for compassionate, personable and mature performers to join the company for our next ambitious work.  Our aim was to cast dancers with very strong contemporary dance technique, theatre skills and experience in highly physical work.  This work demands strong contact & partnering skills, good improvisation, musicality and confidence in text work.  In addition, the ability to connect with emotionally-driven work was essential as was a willingness and openness to work with the community and non-dancers.”

 Gary continued: 

“We are thrilled to give work to the next generation of NSCD dancers whilst supporting late career ones too. Alex made his professional debut with the company in 2021 and Gavin returns to our company after performing in COAL, 'Bagofti’ and 'But Living’.  I can’t wait to work collaboratively with all the dancers as we look to premiere and tour from spring 2025.”


Gavin Coward

Gavin Coward headshot

Born and raised in Leeds, Gavin graduated from NSCD in 2001.  Gavin is a Creative Partner at balletLORENT, taking on lead dance roles and collaborating on the delivery of the community cast projects, Learning & Participation programmes and Youth Academy. He has danced with Matthew Bourne’s Swan Lake, Royal Opera House, Requardt and Rosenberg, Bock and Vincenzi and Hofesh Shechter Company.  Gavin also has his own company, Paradox Pictures.


Imogen Wright

Imogen Wright headshot

Imogen grew up in East Yorkshire, where they developed a passion for dance with hip-hop and commercial classes at Base Dance Company. At the age of 18, Imogen joined the NSCD Centre for Advanced Training scheme.  They continued their professional training at NSCD, graduating with a first-class honours degree in 2021.  During this time, Imogen worked with choreographers including Jane McKernan, Hana Goseling, Yukiko Masui and Vicki Igbokwe. Alongside their third year, Imogen was involved with external projects by Northern Rascals and Möbius Dance Company.  Imogen then went on to complete the MA Contemporary Dance Performance (VERVE).  Since graduating, Imogen has worked with Jamaal Burkmar (Extended Play Dance) on numerous projects including a site-specific collaboration with Mahalia at the V&A Museum.


Alex Gosmore

Alex Gosmore headshot

Alex grew up in Bristol where he started dancing with Rise Youth Dance Company. He then moved to Leeds to study at NSCD where he graduated with a First Class Honours degree in 2021.  During his training Alex performed works by Anna Williams, Barnaby Booth and Vicki Igbokwe. In addition, he has worked externally with Northern Rascals, Möbius Dance Company and made his professional debut in a site-specific work by Gary Clarke at Lawrence Batley Theatre, Huddersfield.


Mayowa Ogunnaike

Mayowa Ogunnaike headshot

Mayowa is a British-Nigerian dance artist based in London and Leeds.  She graduated from NSCD’s MA Professional Placement Scheme in 2018.  She has worked as a performer for several companies including Phoenix Dance Theatre, Uchenna Dance, ACE Dance and Music and Mobius Dance.  Alongside performing, Mayowa delivers creative and technique classes across the UK and collaborates with artists to create multi-disciplinary work.