Activate are one of the partner organisations who are part of Jerwood Choreographic Research Project a National Dance Network initiative supported by Jerwood Charitable Foundation and delivered by DanceXchange.

In December 2016, artists were invited to pitch choreographic research projects to a panel of the partners, each of whom had money to invest. The eight artists have now been selected and will be revealed early in 2017.

The Jerwood Choreographic Research Project (JCRP) is an innovative investment model designed to:

  • Stimulate new ideas and thinking in choreography;
  • Support research into new, challenging and exciting choreographic ideas;
  • Make possible a number of UK-based research projects that nurture choreographic experimentation within both a dance and wider art form context;
  • Strengthen the process by which an innovative choreographic idea or concept is realised;
  • Enrich and broaden the understanding of and engagement with choreography;
  • Engage new non-dance organisations/individuals and connect them with the dance sector, facilitating a more informed dialogue about, and championing of, choreographic development;
  • Create a hub where curators, producers, academics and managers from a wide range of organisations can engage in dialogue, increasing awareness of choreographic research;
  • Identify co-commissioning, presentation and distribution opportunities for works developed from the research.

The JCRP is open to artists/creatives working in any art form who are interested in open-ended research that they consider ‘choreographic’.

Addressing a sector-wide gap in support for choreographic research, the JCRP has established a new culture of investment bringing together a wide range of investors (‘Contributors’) from across the cultural sector to pool their funds and expertise. A key aim of the project is to attract Contributors working in a range of sectors including but not limited to visual arts, theatre, film, higher education, live art and performance, etc, thereby facilitating a broader dialogue about, and championing of, choreographic development.

The JCRP provides a context for artists to genuinely undertake high-risk research and generates dedicated research money to kick-start ideas and enable experimentation.  The JCRP is not focused on the goal of a produced performance piece; rather, the research itself enriches the way in which we cultivate and stimulate choreographic practice.  Evidence from JCRP I, where contributors invested in the next stages of projects and programmed the outcomes of the research projects, demonstrates how supporting early stage research can create leverage for later stage investment as well as unique and innovative performance and engagement.

JCRP is an innovative investment model designed to kick-start ideas and research into challenging and exciting choreographic concepts and to stimulate new thinking in choreography by enabling artists to think, dream and experiment freely.

Tim Eyles said: This is a unique project. It champions the space for artists to explore new ideas when resources for projects are often focussed only on producing outcomes. It will also put cash directly into artists’ projects at a time when artists’ fees are under pressure, and moreover will introduce their work to a powerful group of producers and programmers.”

JCRP has established a new culture of investment bringing together a wide range of investors (‘Contributors’) to pool their funds and expertise. DanceXchange leads an impressive partnership of 35 Contributors from throughout the UK who have committed cash to create the JCRP investment fund, which is currently £130,000.  Some Contributors will also provide in-kind support such as access to studio space, technical facilities and other resources.

Contributers to the second edition are: Activate Performing Arts, Akademi, artsdepot, Attenborough Centre for the Creative Arts, Bonnie Bird Choreography Fund, Cambridge Junction, Coreo Cymru, Dance Umbrella, Dance4, DanceEast, DanceXchange, Deda, East London Dance, Greenwich Dance, Hull Dance, Lawrence Batley Theatre, LIFT, London College of Fashion, Middlesbrough Institute of Modern Art, Migrations, Pavilion Dance South West, Rich Mix, Royal Ballet Studio Programme, Royal Central School of Speech and Drama, Sadler’s Wells Theatre, Site Gallery, Stone Nest, The Brewhouse Theatre & Arts Centre, The Lowry, The Place, The Point, Tintype Gallery, Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance and ZOO Venues.

David Massingham, Artistic Director of DanceXchange, said: The way the JCRP brings many different cultural professionals together and focuses on putting research funds into making great ideas happen is the cornerstone to this important project.  JCRP I was very successful and very rewarding as it had a real impact on creative practice, as well as contributing to the debate on what choreographic research is.  I am happy to be leading JCRP II.”

Artistic Director: David Massingham

Executive Producer: David Wright

Associate Producer (Freelance): Theresa Beattie