Wednesday 21st February 2024, 5:58pm BA3 students secure industry placements

Image: Final year BA (Hons) student Katy Marshall in rehearsal captured by Elly Welford

Here at NSCD we maintain excellent connections to the industry, providing an invaluable bridge to the profession for our students. For students in their third year of our BA (Hons) Dance (Contemporary) programme in particular, this can often lead to placement work, offering real-world experiences for personal and artistic growth.

Matt Slater, Acting Head of Undergraduate Studies explains:

“Undergraduate training here at NSCD is specifically designed to support the development of contemporary dance artists, performers, choreographers, facilitators and teachers.  Throughout their training, our students work with guest practitioners, choreographers and artists who provide invaluable industry insights.  Experiencing such a wide array of creative disciplines and making those all-important industry connections prepares our students for their next steps in the profession and can provide opportunities to enhance future career prospects as versatile artists.

Matt explains further:

“We often get approached by artists and companies looking to work with our students.  Sometimes, students seek out industry internship opportunities themselves.  We do all that we can to facilitate and support these happening as we realise the huge benefits they bring.  We have structured the course to allow students to accrue the necessary academic credits in order to complete their studies, during situations where opportunities for professional development would mean them missing classes and any associated assessments.”

This year, we are delighted to see several of our final year BA (Hons) students securing offers of placement work with external companies – see below for further details:

  • Jemima Colin has joined Rendez-Vous Dance Company for their 2024 tour of The Monocle. Rehearsals recently took place in Newcastle ahead of a national tour running until June.  We’ll be able to see Jemima on stage at the Riley Theatre when the company performs in April.
  • Jacob Philips is undertaking three weeks of R&D with NSCD alumni-led Gary Clarke Company at various West Yorkshire locations for the company’s new work DETENTION.  Jacob’s placement began in January and includes weeks in March 2024.
  • Katy Marshall will be working in Barnsley and Doncaster over the coming months on R&D with NSCD alumnus Carlos Pons Guerra and his company DeNada Dance Theatre for a new work based on the Elizabethan play Edward II by Christopher Marlowe.
  • Giulia Carastro is currently rehearsing in Cardiff with Jack Philp Dance before touring Into The Novacene across various UK venues from February- April.
  • Kathryn White, Rosa Liekens, Giulia Carastro and Leila Akers will all join NSCD alumni-led Alleyne Dance for one week in March as part of their performance Far From Home at The Lowry in Manchester.

The industry experience is proving to be mutually beneficial for our students and the external companies.  Student Jacob Philips says:

"I'm currently on a student placement with Gary Clarke on his new work ‘Detention’. I have learnt so much through this experience and it has fuelled my passion even greater to be a dancer. Gary and the company have given me such an inspiring experience and shown me so many avenues in the creative sector, as much as I have been treated just like one of the main company members and learnt so much of the creative process.  I have also had the enriching opportunity to have 1-1 tutorials with the costume designers and the engagement manger. I am very thankful for NSCD allowing me to have this incredible opportunity to learn more about the creative industries."

Gary Clarke, Artistic Director of Gary Clarke Company Ltd explains:

'As an alumni, Independent Governor and Honorary Fellow of NSCD, I am always keen to support both staff and students. We currently have Jacob Phillips on placement with us and it is a total pleasure to host him. He has fitted into the company with ease and professionalism and we are all deeply impressed by his ability to produce some amazing work. He has an infectious rigour and readiness in his working attitude and attacks each moment of the day with passion and precision. He is supportive, sensitive, respectable and a real asset to our developing creative process. It is clear to see that through his training, Jacob has acquired the skills and attributes to make an exceptional dance artist and I am confident that he will carve out a very successful and sustained career in dance' 

Student Jemima Colin is making the most of her internship with Rendez-Vous Dance Company and says:

"Working as an apprentice dancer for Rendez-Vous Dance Company for their UK tour of 'The Monocle' during my third year at NSCD has been an opportunity of growth and experience I am hugely grateful for.  Working with Mathieu Geffre as a choreographer and mentor in addition to Artistic Director Andrew Gardiner has supported growth in both my performance and creative practice as well as inspiring me physically through Matthieu's company classes throughout the process. Within the safe space created by a cast of incredible artists and people who I have taken huge example from, I'm so excited to be moving onto the performance phase of this experience and continue to be thankful for such an opportunity."

Jack Philp, Artistic Director of Jack Philp Dance explains the value of connections to the industry:

"I’ve always been interested in holding space for a breadth of artists; those with mixed years of experience as well as those entirely fresh to the profession. Working with NSCD to offer opportunities for their BA3 students has been really exciting, it shows they’re hungry to learn and ready to jump in. It’s been a great motivator having Giulia in the studio with us as we prepare for our Spring tour of our new production ‘Into the Novacene’. I’ve been really impressed by her work and it shows that these sorts of relationships are important, and valuable, for those dancers to gain a deep dive experience of working within companies."