Dorset Youth Dance

DYD at Origins 2017

Activate believe every young person is able and entitled to experience high quality dance at every stage of life. We help develop exciting young talents and accompany them at any stage of their dance career, to support the future generation of dance artists and practitioners.  We achieve this by providing advice on careers, signposting to opportunities, brokering partnerships with professionals and managing Dorset Youth Dance (DYD). DYD works to offer the young poeple of Dorset high-quality dance experiences through both educational outreach and a county wide youth dance company. 

DYD launched Dorset Youth Dance pre-company Feeder Class and Company (previously Portrait) in September 2016 and is for young people who have a real passion and enthusiasm for dance and want to take that extra leap in training. DYD also launched a fun, creative class for 7-11 year olds, in May 2018.


Focusing on contemporary dance, successful applicants have the opportunity to work as part of a professional youth dance company or pre-company feeder class and work with inspiring and renowned former Motionhouse dance artist and youth dance leader Claire Benson. Michaela Shaw, Producer (specialising in Youth Dance and Diversity) at Activate Performing Arts, the arts charity that manages the project, said “We are extremely excited to have Claire work with us on launching the new youth dance company and feeder class and leading the young people through exciting new opportunities. Activate supports the development of aspiring young people in the arts industry. We believe it is important for young people to gain as much experience, support and guidance into a career in the arts from early on. Dorset Youth Dance has received funding by the Arts Council England and West Dorset District Council to support the launch and development of youth dance in Dorset.”

What to expect

Company 1 members (aged 7-11) can expect to learn contemporary dance through creative exercises, preparing the young people for the more technical training of the Company 2 class.

Company 2 members (aged 12-25) can expect to be supported and nurtured through creative and technical contemporary training to become a more confident performer, ready for the next stage.

Company 3 members (aged 12-25) can expect to be challenged at an advanced level, demonstrating professionalism in performance in preparation for further stages of dance training.

Both the Company 2 and Company 3 dancers will experience performance opportunities at regional youth dance platforms, work with leading national dance artists and develop their portfolio suitable for today’s performing arts industry.

How to apply  

For further information please contact Project Manager, Sammy, at: or tel: 01305 260 954

One of Activate’s objective is to promote information related to youth dance to young people and help them be part of a vibrant dance community of like minded people. If you wish to receive this information about shows, training or performance opportunities please subscribe to our youth dance net mailing list by emailing For more information about Youth dance in the UK visit Youth Dance England website.

For more information regarding our educational outreach work please email or tel: 01305 260 954

How to apply

For further information, please contact: or tel: 01305 260 954


  • Dorset Youth Dance Company at Origins 2017 Photo: Andy Beeson

  • Dorset Youth Dance Company at Origins 2017 Photo: Andy Beeson