Exploring Dance: Sampled – Where to start on Saturday 25 Feb


Following its success in London and Birmingham, Dance: Sampled is about to take over The Lowry and I’m keen to make the most of it.  As a dance enthusiast I was spoilt for choice from the extensive list of workshops, performances and activities over the two days, so in order to use my time wisely I’ve created a day plan in order to navigate the activities and find my way through The Lowry – which will hopefully help you out too.

As I have a jam-packed day ahead of me I’m going to start with a lie in and an episode of Come Dine With Me before my journey to Salford.


Bharatanatyam with Shobana Jesansingh Dance: Studio 1

I have decided to challenge myself by stepping out of my contemporary dance comfort zone and try a completely new style!  Shobana’s workshop welcomes beginners and experts (and I certainly am a beginner) to try a traditional style of Indian classical dance. With such an eclectic mix of dance styles under one roof I’d be silly not to try something that isn’t so readily available throughout the North West.


After working up an appetite in Shobana’s workshop I’m going to hit up the Pier Eight restaurant to fill up on a hot meal before the afternoon’s activities. Pier Eight have put on a really great deal of chilli or a hotdog (for meat lovers and veggies alike!) for a fiver meaning I have more money to spend on treats to munch on during the evening show. If you’re more of a light snack/sandwich kinda guy then I suggest you check out Tower Coffee Shop, they have a 10/10 selection of cakes.



Variation: A Contemporary Dance Battle: Pier Eight Rooms

You will definitely catch me with my mouth wide open as I watch on in awe during the Variation improv battle. Improvisation is definitely not my strong point so I will not be competing, but I find it so impressive that dancers are able to create movement on the spot without having pre-rehearsed their movement.

Dancers will battle it out through a series of rounds responding to different stimuli as the crowd get rowdy and cheer them on. There are three industry professionals acting as judges and the winner will receive a hefty £100 cash prize so I’m hoping the battle will be super intense! For those in the know the judges are Anthony Missen (Company Chameleon), Eckhard Theimann (The Lowry Programming Associate Dance) and Dani Harris-Walters (Avant Garde Dance Company).


5:00pm – 7:30pm

The Body of Us: Specific hot spots around The Lowry

As I make my way between my scheduled activities I’m going to make sure I stumble upon the check-points that are a part of The Body of Us dance trail. Bridget Fiske has created a series of activities for the public to take part in during their day at Dance: Sampled.

Some activities are really experimental and choreography based such as creating movement patterns in response to a drawing. Others simply require us to tweet our fave dance film using #dancebodyus #DanceSampled or create a funny Boomerang video. What’s great is you can pick and choose which activities you do, it’s a really laid back way of getting creative and fun to with your friends and family.



Hip-Hop Jam: The Lowry Foyer

I’ve convinced my Mum to join in the Hip-Hop jam with me, although I’m not sure she’s ready for how crazy it’s going to get. The Jam is going to be lead by one of the selected North West Breaking Convention Groups who makes Hip-Hop accessible for anyone and everyone. There will be some great tunes played to get the crowd going and if you feel like you need to take five you can grab a drink at the bar.



Evening Performance: The Lyric Theatre

After a jam-packed day I’ll be ready to finally settle down in my seat, get out my Maltesers, and watch spectacular performances from eight (!!!) critically acclaimed companies.

My day-plan is tailored to the activities that sparked my interest but there it so much more that I didn’t cover, such as a Ceilidh Jam, a flamenco work-shop and pop-up performances from a range of companies through-out the day. I may be going home feeling VERY tired but it will be so worth it, even just to see my mum doing the Bart Simpson (if you don’t know what that means then come and find it out)!

Written by Amber Calland, Youth Dance Ambassador

Tickets for Dance: Sampled – po.st/Sampled17