Yorkshire Dance supports four young artists as New Associates. Through provision of studio space, training and performance opportunities, we aim to nurture them, their work and their careers.
Louise Ahl (aka Ultimate Dancer)
Swedish-born Louise Ahl is a UK-based choreographer and performer. Through an expanded idea of dance and choreography she creates solo work with her performance alter-ego Ultimate Dancer but also works collaboratively with other artists. Philosophy, pseudo-science and the constant mission to use methods that challenges the performance production process fuel her research.
Louise has studied theatre in Sweden, Choreography in Berlin and received a First Class BA Choreography from Dartington College of Arts in 2010. Her work has been shown in the UK, Germany and Denmark and has been supported through Arts Council England and the Swedish Arts Grants Committee.
Nathan Geering is a dance artist and hip hop representative for Jonzi D’s Breakin’ Convention in Sheffield who enjoys collaborating with artists from different dance genres enabling him to creatively explore dance styles that feed back into his own movement vocabulary. From the beginning of his training over eight years ago when he travelled to America, China and Korea where he worked extensively with former b-boy champions learning their methodology, which gave him an insight and opportunity to experience how artists from different cultures create, learn and are motivated by their artistic vision, he has continued to be open to other cultures that enrich his work and that of his multicultural dance company called Rationale.
Nathan has been drawn to work with artists from a variety of backgrounds in the UK and Africa and during 2012 worked on a Cultural Olympiad musical dance theatre project entitled Bright in your Corner featuring Usutho, a group of South African artists.
He is exploring how psychology can help enhance the audience’s experince of of hiphop theatre and is currently touring internationally with Sonia Sabri Company with Kathakbox, which was nominated for the London Dance award.
Jordan Massarella is one of the most exciting creative talents emerging from the Northern School of Contemporary Dance (NSCD) since graduation in 2011. His most recent work Visitors, supported by Arts Council England, toured successfully in the north of England before going to The Place, London in 2013. Jordan was associate artist at the NSCD and is currently New Associate with Yorkshire Dance. With a powerful sense of zeitgeist and popular culture, he creates evocative atmosphere through eclectic music, rich visuals and strong direction.
Commissions include The Yorkshire Flock (mass dance commission with Gary Clarke as part of The Big Dance); For Dear Life for The Verve, post graduate performance company; assistant choreographer for Not, performance art festival in Brooklyn and A Long Way Of Seeing, a sound and movement project collaborating with the ‘Gamalan Orchestra’ choreographed for the students of York University.
Independent choreographic projects include amongst others Thanks For Your Concern (Research and Development Project with Ben Wright, Artistic Director of Bgroup); Reminds Me Baby Of You Premiered as part of Live Bites at Yorkshire Dance; The Crying Light Performed at Leeds Festival Fringe as part of a site specific platform; Mansion: movement based Installation at East Street Arts Patrick Studio (visual arts studios, Leeds).
Sophie is a performance artist who is interested and involved in the creation of live work which focuses on the connection between autobiography, live performance, performance writing and what it means to be a female on stage, exploring the complexities of the self in relation to her practice.
In the two years following her graduation from York St John University, she has created and co-created several works including her current and ongoing collaboration with Lydia Cottrell, 70/30 Split, a female performance duo.
“This year has been crucial to me as an emerging artist. I graduated, won a choreographic prize from Yorkshire Dance and York St John University, showcased my first work at Burst!, began my partnership with YD, gained funding and business mentoring, and represented Yorkshire at Dancebase’s Heads Up! at the Edinburgh fringe. It’s a daunting leap from education to industry, but YD’s support system has allowed for positive growth and offered the help necessary to develop my artistic practice, for example through attending Juncture and working with experienced artists. Providing support and platforms for my work, YD has given me beneficial experience and contacts, preparing me for the advance into industry.”