Scottish Ballet selects 6 choreographers for mentoring scheme

Scottish Ballet has selected 6 Scotland-based choreographers to join the Scottish Ballet Creates mentorship scheme, notably with 3 male and 3 female choreographers.

Building on the success of last year’s scheme, this year’s participants will receive mentorship from CEO / Artistic Director Christopher Hampson and internationally renowned mentor, choreographer and performer Kerry Nicholls.

The successful applicants include:

  • Ewan Hambleton
  • Jamiel Laurence (Scottish Ballet dancer)
  • Emma Jayne Park
  • Tamsyn Russell
  • Lynn Shaw
  • Thomas Small (who was the first ever Artist in Residence at BBC Radio 2)

The Scottish Ballet Creates mentorship scheme sees the group of diversely talented and experienced artists spend two weeks at the Scottish Ballet studios in Glasgow, working closely with the Company’s dancers.

Scottish Ballet CEO/Artistic Director Christopher Hampson:

“Scottish Ballet Creates is a mentorship scheme demonstrating our commitment to investing in developing choreographic talent. I am thrilled to announce the six choreographers selected to take part in the project this year.

“The choreographers will be mentored by me and choreographer/mentor, Kerry Nicholls. Each participant will work intensively on developing their creative voice throughout the project. The group has a diverse range of experience and will get unprecedented access to spend two weeks creating and exploring their craft with the dancers of Scottish Ballet.”

Meet the choreographers:

Jamiel Laurence

Born in London, Jamiel Laurence is currently a Soloist with Scottish Ballet, where he has danced for over 7 years. During his time in Scotland, Jamiel has created works for the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, Cottiers Dance Festival Glasgow and recently a piece for the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland. In 2015, Jamiel Co-Directed and Choreographed a Dance Film, A Portrait of Marc Brew, for the inaugural Dance International Glasgow, which went on to be screened at many international Dance film festivals including New York’s Dance on Camera, the San Francisco Dance Film Festival and LOIKKA Dance Film Festival Helsinki. As a new voice in choreography, Jamiel is thrilled to be a part of the SB Creates mentorship programme 2017.

Tamsyn Russell

Tamsyn Russell is a choreographer, dancer and teacher based in Edinburgh. From 2008-2014 she was the lead dancer and assistant choreographer from Janis Claxton Dance. As an emerging choreographer Tamsyn has created and presented several works including: ID Me, In the hearts of humans and Hunting Dust. In 2016 she was commissioned by Imaginate to make and tour Go get ’em Kid, a dance work for young audiences and their families. She has choreographed for Youth Dance Companies throughout Scotland and Finland and choreographed Team Solo for ProjectY tour in 2016. Tamsyn is creating a new work Scene Stealer which had its first research and development stage at the end of 2016 and hopes to continue developing the work this year, to be presented in 2018.

Thomas Small

Thomas Small is a multi-award winning choreographer (Robin Howard Foundation Commission, Bonnie Bird New Choreography Award) and the first ever Artist in Residence at BBC Radio 2. He is Artistic Director of Shaper/Caper. His critically acclaimed work Within This Dust has been performed in São Paulo, Berlin and just had a sold out performance at 9/11 Memorial & Museum at the World Trade Center in New York City. His new work is called Self/ish and explores what it’s like for young people to come out in the 21st century.

Lynn Shaw

Having trained in Scotland Lynn spent many years as a freelance dance artist and Artistic Director of Fusion Youth Dance Company choreographing, creating and touring work at leading national youth dance events and running her own community dance School. Lynn’s most recent residency, supported by Citymoves Dance Agency, was exploring a new piece of professional work she is creating inspired by the documentary “Borderline” she featured in as part of the Scottish Mental Health Arts and Film Festival (2016) and Glasgow Short Film Festival (2017) Lynn is enrolled part time in the Med in Learning and Teaching in the Performing Arts at The Royal Conservatoire and works part time at North East Arts Touring and Aberdeen International Youth Festival.

Emma Jayne Park

Working under the collective umbrella Cultured Mongrel, Emma completed a large scale tour of Scotland last year with her immersive work for young audiences and their families Experts In Short Trousers travelling to urban and rural communities alike.  Having spent early 2017 working with ambitious directors Max Webster and Sandy Thompson in The Royal Lyceum and Dundee Rep Theatre she will return to her work out with traditional theatre settings during The Scottish Mental Health Arts and Film Festival in the Autumn, developing living room performances specifically for individuals who cannot attend the theatre as a result of ill health.

Ewan Hambelton

Ewan Hambelton is in his graduating year on the BA Modern Ballet course at Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, where he won an award for his choreographic work.  Since joining the Conservatoire he has performed with Scottish Ballet and travelled to Singapore as part of the Scottish Ballet Youth Exchange programme in 2015. Due to his significant contributions during this time, Ewan was asked to return in 2016 to work as a peer mentor, travelling to New York with the group and creating a piece on students which was performed during the trip.  Ewan is currently creating a piece for the Morningside Advanced Training program and will present new work at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland: Modern Ballet Graduation Performance.  Previous work also includes the Traditional Scottish Folk Duo Gnoss, as part of St Magnus International Festival.

For more information visit: scottishballet.co.uk