catalogue of works


All performance pieces can be accompanied by a range of workshops.
Foundation to Higher Education.

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Passing (2): a price of a ticket


Passing(2): the price of a ticket: This work was commissioned by LDIF 16. The creative process included the creation of a duet that was performed at Duke University. The work was then first performed as a solo at the LDIF 16 festival in Leicester. The piece continues exploration of the experience of those identifying as women [Passing(1): I right my own story, 2016 and Untitled: Women’s work, 2014]. Passing (2) explores a semi-autobiographical look at the projections encountered when identified as being a ‘Black woman’. The work draws from James Balwin’s quote ‘the price of the ticket’ to question if there is even a ticket to be had. Photos by John Diehl, Barry Lewis and Lisa Gilby.


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Remain


Remain: Adesola guest choreographer activity: This piece was created when Adesola was invited back to WSU to create work for their December Dance Concert 2016. The work was devised with 21 dance students and performed at the Music Hall, Detroit. The work was inspired by the bravery of refugees traveling to Europe and in formed by the UK referendum on leaving European Union and the USA 2016 election. Photos of the performance by Scott Lipiec.


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Passing (1): I right my own story


Passing (1): I right my own story: Adesola guest choreographer activity: created for Wayne State University December Dance Concert 2015. The work was devised with nine dance students and performed at the Music Hall, Detroit. The work was inspired by Adesola’s past three years dance teaching projects at the Ruth Ellis Centre, particularly in memory of Amber & Treasure. The work underlines the need to recognise the violence and injustices suffered by young Trans-women. Photos of performance by Scott Lipiec.


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Untitled: Women's Work


Untitled: Women's Work: This dance-based research looks at the lived experience of women living and working in the Flint and Detroit areas. It is an attempt to take the body seriously when we talk about women’s work/what makes a ‘good’ job. Untitled: Women’s Work is both scholarly art and artistic research using narrative inquiry, dance and film as research methodologies. During our data collection period women express what they hope for in a good job and the barriers they have encountered in searching for and keeping them. Specifically the research has drawn out two themes: relationships (developed and negotiated in the situation of work and Self), and rhythms (of Self and work institution). Initial findings presented here suggest the continual establishment, disruption, negotiation and maintenance of rhythms and relationships in the work place has an impact on what makes a ‘good’ job.


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Light Steps


Light Steps: Created especially for children (3+) and family audiences. The piece takes inspiration from artist Spencer Finch’s current exhibition at Turner Contemporary, Margate 2014; The Skies can’t keep their secret. The work premiered in the exhibition space in August 2014. Light Steps takes the children on a 40-minute magical journey using light and colour as a portal through moments in time. American based sceneographer and costume designer Shelby Newport collaborated with Adesola in the making of the work to transport the audience to a colour-filled world of moving dance with live music composed and performed by Jacob Shirley. Characters and objects in the work are inspired by drawing and dance created with children during a residency at Bromstone Primary School in Broadstairs in Summer 2014. The work will tour schools and theatres in 2015/16


“…we love the children’s involvement and movement of both dancers and fabric…” Shain Williams

“Wonderful performance – magical experience, thank you” Dave Knappett

“The accompanying music was beautiful, the dancers were awesome, we liked the use of colour and scarves” anonymous

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Reflections in Dance
on Dan Graham’s
Pavilion


Reflections in Dance on Dan Graham’s Pavilion: The Turner Contemporary Museum, Margate commissioned Adesola to make a piece that responded to Dan Graham’s Pavilion Two Cubes, One Rotated 45 as part of their Summer Exhibition Curiosity: Art and the Pleasures of Knowing 2013 and Love Architecture Week.


The work was performed around Dan Graham’s installation with the audience viewing the work from within the installation. The piece was performed by three professional dancers, members of DancingStrong Performance Company, and fifteen Year 5 students from Bromstone Primary School.


“wonderful..’ audience member
“our children also loved the whole experience…” audience member

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Corsets,
Grains & Greenways


Corsets, Grains & Greenways: Dancing Downtown Ann Arbor A site specific work originally performed in Michigan USA June 2012, by Ann Arbor Dance Works. Corsets, Grains & Greenways was a collaboration of four Choreographers Adesola Akinleye, Monica Bill Barnes, Jessica Fogel and Robin Wilson. The piece also involved Community High School and the work of Marly Spieser-Schneider . Corsets, Grains & Greenways responded to the history and architecture of four blocks in Downtown Ann Arbor. The Audience walked from location-to-location starting at the historic Pratt Block (once a corset factory), ending at the railway tracks that run along a sunken creek, the site of a proposed new Greenway.


“Akinleye…made us think about connection and boarders. She tied dancers to trees with streamers they manipulated; positioned them in stores fronts where they scribbled on their bodies and the windows with a makers (as if to say, where do I end and where does it start?); linked them to lampposts with stretchy jersey that allowed them to partner themselves into fabulous backbends.” Susan Isaacs Nisbett Freelance Entertainment Writer


“…wonderful dancing, the clever choreography, smart and witty, artful and artless, that made up this immaculately planned event…” AnnArbor.com



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Rose's Jingle Dress


Rose's Jingle Dress was commissioned by State of Emergency and was toured across England September – November 2010. The work was created for Young Audience and their families. Performed in the round the work is interactive.

The dance performance piece tells the story of a young girl, Rose, who has been left a jingle dress by her Grandmother. But it does not have jingles any more. With the help of two friends she finds the jingles she needs to complete the dress. The work encourages young people to work with their environment to find their own voice just as Rose finds the jingles to give her dress a voice.

With music by Omaha Whitetail, Northern Style Side Step, and other original music by Angeline Conaghan. Set designed by Illugi Eysteinsson, lighting Anthony Osborne, Dramaturge Chris Fogg, Choreographer's assistant Katherine Leung, performers Amy Butler, Alice Cade, Lauren Okadigbo. Development for the piece took place with Pembury House Children's Centre, Trottiscliffe Primary School and MTYP summer workshop (CA).

"The children were entranced throughout" John Ashford

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Shadowball


Shadowball a Jazz Opera music Julian Joseph and libretto by Mike Phillips and produced by Hackney Music Trust. Adesola joined the creative team as Choreographer with Jonathan Moore directing.

Shadowball is about Black Baseball players and links to a sports programme for primary schools, using the arts both as a learning tool for other areas of the curriculum, and to stimulate interest in this sport. Using the stories of Black Baseball players in the 1930s-40s, and their jazz compatriots who often suffered similar racial prejudice, Shadowball is designed to inspire young people to achieve despite the odds.

The piece involved two primary schools year 5 & 6 classes in Hackney, Julian Joseph's band, and opera singer Cleveland Watkiss. The premier performance took place at the Mermaid Theatre London June 2010.

A vast cast of schoolchildren handle Joseph's tricky jazz themes with enthusiasm and adroitness. John Fordham, The Guardian

.. its world premiere was carried off brilliantly last night with 120 Hackney schoolchildren.
Jack Massarik, Evening Standard

The part of the Shadowball opera that I will remember and treasure the most will be that moment when I did my bow in front of the humungous crowd... because it gave me absolutely huge amounts of confidence (sic) for the future ahead. Participant

Image above by Clive Barda, courtesy of HMDT

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Geography of the Body


Geography of the Body is a fictional look at the experience of Ethnographic Research. The dance depicts four events, extracts, from a researcher’s diary following the process of people changing from being subjects on a page with a written history to participants in a life, with a physical history: bodies that hold within them a past and a future. The work uses the live film projection programme, Isadora to create sites on the stage. It is a 20 minute piece for four dancers and two musicians.

Scenographer Andy Hamer, Lighting Jonathan Samuels, Music composed and played live by Angeline Conaghan and Terje Eversen (Bark)

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Vicinity


Vicinity: Adesola guest choreographer activity: Created for London Metropolitan University for their Third Year Dance students’ final year performance at the Bernie Grant Centre in April ’09. ‘Vicinity’ draws on ideas of identity, space and environment. The work explores the nature of ‘site-specific’ dance, creating a piece for a particular place and time. The vicinity relates directly to the specific area in London the performance space, the Bernie Grant Theatre, is located in and captures a moment in time for the performers and for the area – Haringey. The work was created in partnership with The Haringey Housing Federation. The resulting piece integrates the community, the theatre and the performers to create a piece that relates to the space and area in which it is performed. This piece uses live music by Hamish Meaney, and pre-recorded music by Angeline Conaghan and Terje Eversen (Bark). The work also uses the live film projection programme, Isadora. 


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lOcAte


lOcAte was commissioned by Dancin' Oxford for the Oxford Dance Festival, February 2008. The piece took place in the Saïd Business School Building, Oxford and was performed by Oxford based professional dancers.

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Trace


Trace is a 20 minute piece for four dancers and two musicians commissioned by Dance in Herts (managed by essexdance) as any artists bursary  in 2007.

TRACE started with research of the historic city of St. Albans, understanding the ancient and dramatic history of the city; how this has percolated through various layers in numerous ways, into the living history of the architecture of the city and its inhabitants.

Following discussions with a local resident, one street in particular Sopwell Lane, became significant.  Its geographical reference within the city culminated many of the points that had come to light from previous research. The project has been a fascinating journey through lives, living and recollections of the past, to find a narrative that reflects the inter weaving of story and place bringing together the many elements of memory and personal experience. Lives become alive with the structures of the buildings.

“We shape our buildings; thereafter they shape us”. Winston Churchill

The final dance piece reflects how the names and people of the past have left their traces becoming alive in the memories of the day.

Scenographer Andy Hamer, Architect Illur, Lighting Hansjörg Schmitt, Music composed and played live by Angeline Conaghan, Graham Lyndon-Jones, David Leahy

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Arrive


Arrive is a 4min dance film commissioned by Video Pool as part of ‘First Video Award’
Arrive is distributed by Video Pool, Distribution Department, vpdist@videopool.org

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Truth
and
Transparency


Truth and Transparency, inspired by Ralph Ellisons novel 'Invisable Man', is a twenty minute piece with four dancers, music composed by Michael “Mikey J” Asante, lighting design Jonathan Samuels and set by Stuart Peverill. This piece uses dance and film to explore ideas raised about projection and identity. Two dancers representing a man’s mind fight for identity against the projection of persona from outside. Both dancers and projected-light solicit space and shape in their bid to claim the eye of the audience and in so doing find recognition. Truth and Transparency was commissioned by Dance North West with support from Arts Council England.

”Talent-to-watch Adesola Akinleye’s multi-layered duet… played sober, complex games with reflection and shadow, light and darkness, reality and illusion…” Donald Hutera

“Adesola Akinleye’s choreography was angular, linear and precise, balancing poise with masculinity. Sean Graham and Daniel Baird… danced with a touching intimacy.” Anthony Psaila

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Witness is a 15 min piece. The piece uses a solo dancer with a live camera feed. The dancer interacts with images projected on to the cyclorama. The piece explores the idea that we hold our memories within our body and explores the feeling the dancers has as she hears about the beginning of a war. Witness was commissioned by the Manitoba Council for International Cooperation in 2004.

Music by Serena Ryder and Soundtrack created by Dave Quanbury. Video Loc Lu & Adesola Akinleye.

I want you to understand that your humanity isn’t dependent on how a system works but how you learn to work within that system.

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site Specific Work


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Past Performances


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