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Dance pioneer's 1930s footage inspires new work

Unearthed footage from the 1930s of dancers performing in the style of the influential choreographer Margaret Morris has inspired new works.

Internationally celebrated dancer Vincent Hantam has used the footage to create the new pieces in collaboration with academics and archivists.

World premiere

The works will premiere as part of Movement, a weekend of free exhibitions and performances on 15 and 16 October at Horsecross Arts in Perth to celebrate the pioneering legacy of Morris, an innovator, artist, dancer, educator, writer and physiotherapist.

Dance artists currently studying Dance Science and Education and alumni will perform with Hantam.

The works are set to a new musical score of natural voice and spoken word by award winning singer, songwriter and composer Debra Salem.

Collaborative work

Hantam is a former artist in residence at the University’s Insitute for Sport, Physical Education and Health Sciences. He has worked closely with Wendy Timmons, Programme Director of MSc Dance Science & Education, and Rachel Hosker, archives manager, on the new work.

It is wonderful to have this opportunity to witness existing archival materials come alive in the form of new artistic works. Margaret Morris is a renowned and celebrated innovator of ‘natural movement’. What is possibly less well known is that she was also an influencer and forerunner of dance science as we understand it today.

Wendy TimmonsProgramme Director of MSc Dance Science & Education and co-curator of Movements

Community outreach

As part of a collaborative archival project between the University, Margaret Morris International and Horsecross Arts, dance artists and students Kasumi Momoda and Yifeng Zhu, as well as Hantam, led free dance workshops for pupils at Perth High School and over-16s at Perth Concert Hall.

Movement is supported by Creative Scotland and University of Edinburgh, Moray House School of Education.  

Related links

Movement at Horsecross Arts

Study Dance Science & Education