Intelligent Yoga Teacher Training (2022) through British Wheel of Yoga
Role and responsibilities
I have been involved in dance and movement for three decades working in Dance, Opera, Theatre and Film. I trained at Rambert School of Ballet and Contemporary Dance and worked primarily as a performer between 1991 – 2006. After many ‘homes’ I now live in Hebden Bridge, West Yorkshire. During my career I have been a dancer, actor, puppeteer, choreographer, stage director, artistic director, mentor, producer, intimacy coordinator and educator. I’ve navigated these roles separately but much of the time in various combinations simultaneously. It is a pleasure to be able to draw on all of my experience to support students at Northern School of Contemporary Dance.
My pronouns are He/him and I identify as a member of the LGBTQIA+ community.
There’s a fundamental package of questions that ground my work and practice; to consistently reflect on what dance can be, who’s doing it, where it might happen, who’s watching and why it might be important? I have always believed that the creation, learning and promotion of dance strives for a long-term objective – to encourage a deeper understanding of human experience and to remind us of our mutual dependencies and interrelatedness to one another. From my perspective, dance as an art-form thrives in collaboration, develops community, describes ourselves to ourselves, and illuminates and celebrates human variation – the perfectness of our imperfections. It is an adventure, a way to question what is valuable and to uplift and I believe it can do all of this whilst retaining a visceral, entertaining, and immediate appeal.
In 2021 Ben worked as Artistic Direction Consultant for National Dance Company Wales and was Artistic co-director for Candoco Dance Company between 2017- 2020. He was the Associate Artistic Director and Resident choreographer for Skånes Dansteater from 2014 – 2017.
His ground-breaking work The Feeling of Going for Skånes Dansteater was filmed for cinema and digital release in 2017 by 3 Minutes West – A fully orchestrated staging of Icelandic pop legend Jonsi’s album GO, the work combined opera and pop artists with the Malmo Opera chorus and is available from Arthaus Music and to stream at Marquee TV. Other choreographic work for Skånes Dansteater included To find a way with one another (2018), To see the world while the light lasts (2016), Spectrum (2017), This moment is your life (2014), Small Acts, The Ghost Spot and A Summoning (in collaboration with Muisca Vitae 2010)
In 2019 he choreographed and directed The Lost Thing for Candoco, a unique collaboration with The Royal Opera House. The family-focused dance-theatre work, based on Shaun Tan’s book of the same name was performed by a fully inclusive cast of disabled and non-disabled, dancers, singers and musicians. Ben also created A space in the dark for Black Box Dance Theatre, Denmark in the same year.
Ben launched his pick-up ensemble bgroup in 2008. Work includes The Diminishing Present (2008), About Around (2010), The Lessening of difference (2011) and Just As We Are (2013) The group’s most recent production Point of Echoes (2018) was the first ever commission by the UK’s Rural Touring Dance Initiative. Other directing credits include: The Walk from the Garden (Salisbury International Festival); An Audience with Adrienne; A Night at the Opera (Bayerische Staatsoper Festival)
Other choreography credits in Opera and Theatre include: Boris Godunov (The Royal Opera House), The Insatiable Inflatable Candylion (National Theatre Wales), La Boheme (Washington National Opera), My Night With Reg (Donmar Warehouse/West End), A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Privates on Parade (Michael Grandage Company), The Perfect American, Sunken Garden (ENO),The Marriage of Figaro and Knight Crew (Glyndebourne Opera), Don Giovanni (The Metropolitan Opera), Betrothal in a Monastery (Opera- Comique Paris), Cunning Little Vixen and Rigoletto (Grange Park Opera); Romeo and Juliet, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, The Adventures of Mr Broucek (Opera North), Faust, Dead Man Walking, Macbeth, La Vie Parisienne and La Fanciulla del West (Malmo Opera), Twelfth Night (Donmar West End), Tobias and the Angel and In the Red and Brown Water (Young Vic).
During his performing career Ben toured the USA with Sinner for Stan Wont Dance and has worked for Adventures in Motion Pictures (Now New Adventures), Ricochet, London Contemporary Dance Theatre, Richard Alston and Amanda Miller’s Company: Pretty Ugly. He danced in work by the likes of Mark Morris, Stephen Petronio, Christopher Bruce, Angelin Prejlocaj, Russell Maliphant, Aletta Collins and Improbable Theatre’s Phelim McDermott.
In 1995 he co-created the role of the Prince in Matthew Bourne’s Swan Lake and performed the role in seasons throughout the UK, London’s West End, Los Angeles, Broadway, Japan and Korea. As an actor, Ben joined Nicholas Hytner’s premiere season of His Dark Materials at The National Theatre in 2004, where amongst other roles he created the part of the Golden Monkey.
In Spring 2022 Ben returned to performance in a rural tour of the two-man show Cupid’s Revenge by New Art Club.
Ben regularly mentors younger artists and has taught throughout his career nationally and in international engagements. He has worked as a
guest artist throughout the vocational training sector in Britain and for many of the UK’s National Dance Agencies. As a choreographer he has created student and post-grad work for Transitions Dance Company at Trinity Laban, Edge at The Place, Verve at Northern School of Contemporary Dance, Intoto at London Studio Centre and Beverly Hills High School amongst others.
In 2021 Ben began working as an Intimacy coordinator on the upcoming film ‘My Policeman’ by Amazon Studios and also on new mini-series based on Nick Hornby’s novel Funny Girl for SKY Atlantic
He was a 2016 Clore Fellow for Cultural Leadership and in 2022 qualified as a Scaravelli Inspired Yoga teacher.