Image: Dance Journeys 2018: Chrysalis © Danilo Moroni

Last month our large-scale engagement project Dance Journeys saw nearly 100 young people take to the stage at Sadler’s Wells for a special matinee performance.

Dance Journeys has become a firm highlight of the year – young dancers from ENBYouthCo and four West London secondary schools work with a professional creative team to produce a new work which is performed at London’s famous dance house Sadler’s Wells.

Dance Journeys 2018: Chrysalis © Danilo Moroni

This year, Copthall School, Hampstead School, Hammersmith Academy, Friern Barnet School and ENBYouthCo worked with English National Ballet artists over 12 weeks to create original choreography inspired by Aszure Barton’s Fantastic Beings. Dancers explored themes of metamorphosis, transformation and mutation, with all groups then coming together to perform the 30-minute dance work under the direction of Dance Journeys artistic director Jo Meredith.

Dance Journeys 2018: Chrysalis © Danilo Moroni
Seriously the most amazing five months Luke Brown and ENB has given us. Without them, the show would not have happened and without him believing in us we wouldn’t have had such an amazing experience.
Chrysalis dancer from Friern Barnet School who worked with ENB choreographer Luke Brown
Dance Journeys 2018: Chrysalis © Danilo Moroni

This new dance work titled Chrysalis, set to a dramatic and exhilarating score by composer Thomas Hewitt Jones, built up to a dramatic climax with the evolving choreography. The stirring music was performed and recorded by 70 young musicians from the Royal College of Music Junior Department conducted by Jacques Cohen.

Dance Journeys 2018: Chrysalis © Danilo Moroni

On 18 April, Chrysalis premiered to nearly a full house! The matinee performance also included a performance of Volts, a new work choreographed and danced by students of English National Ballet School, an extract from William Forsythe’s Approximate Sonata 2016 performed by Artists of the Company Angela Wood and Fernando Carratalá Coloma, and Tom Jackson-Greave’s Life of the Party by ENBYouthCo.

Dance Journeys 2018: Chrysalis © Danilo Moroni
Literally the best day of my life. I can’t believe I performed on that stage.
Chrysalis dancer from Copthall School

Take a look at the rehearsal trailer below:

Video: Dance Journeys 2018: Chrysalis © Danilo Moroni

Thanks to the generous support of John Lyon’s Charity, this year’s Dance Journeys was another outstanding success for all involved!