The Point Eastleigh’s Hampshire Youth Dance Company (HYDC) has been selected to represent the South West in the forthcoming U.Dance National Festival.
HYDC is one of just 40 youth dance groups nationwide which has been programmed to represent its region at the 2021 event, following a spring selection process. The group’s submitted film Surrender to the Deepest Blue was originally created in summer 2020 during the first lockdown following government restrictions at the time.
U.Dance Festival, which takes place from 16-18 July, is an online event presented by One Dance UK, the UK body for dance. It will feature three days of digital dance masterclasses, industry information panels and showcases, with a total of 30 sessions to choose from.
Participants will learn from the country’s top dance companies including Matthew Bourne’s New Adventures, Birmingham Royal Ballet, Scottish Ballet, Zoonation: The Kate Prince Company, Phoenix Dance Theatre and Candoco, and from professionals who work with The Royal Ballet, The Greatest Dancer, Six the Musical, Hamilton and The Lion King.
Among the confirmed line-up are Dame Darcey Bussell, Strictly Come Dancing’s Karen Hauer and former champion Joanne Clifton, West End leading lady Miriam Teak-Lee and Royal Ballet star Marcelino Sambe.
The Point is operated by Eastleigh Borough Council. The authority’s Cabinet Member for Economy, Councillor Derek Pretty, said: “The Point is an arts venue of regional importance and it is excellent news that the success of the Hampshire Youth Dance Company (HYDC) is helping maintain its high profile as a centre of excellence for dance development.”
Hampshire Youth Dance Company’s Rehearsal Director Tory East said: “This is one of the country’s biggest youth dance events and we are delighted and honoured to have been selected to represent the region, joining in this celebration of the achievements of all the young dancers from across Hampshire, the South West and beyond.
“The Point Team and I are incredibly proud of HYDC’s resilience and determination as they have continued to produce outstanding work despite the restrictions we have all faced over the last year. We hope that the work of HYDC can help to inspire other young people to discover their own creativity and dance!”
Strictly Come Dancing professional Karen Hauer said: “It’s so important to continue to inspire our young people. I am always excited to see the next generation of dancers’ passion and determination to continue to learn and do what they love. Dance offers a wide range of opportunities and U.Dance is a special celebration of our art form - I can’t wait to see you there.”
HYDC will also take over The Point’s Garden Stage to celebrate the return of live dance performance for one night only on Thursday 15 July at 7.45pm - click here to find out more.
Auditions to join the next cohort of HYDC are taking place on Sunday 25th July at 10.30am with final applications due by Thursday 22nd July - click here to find out more.