Visual art meets performance for Bagofti

Nov 03 2011

Communities Manager, Jon Bradley on bringing contemporary dance into the Millennium Gallery.

The Contemporary Dance Afternoon which took place in partnership with Danceworks UK at the Millennium Gallery on Saturday 29 October powerfully realised the creative potential in the meeting of two distinct artforms. In this case, it was Ian Breakwell’s dance-based video installation The Other Side which provided the impetus for choreographer Gary Clarke’s solo dance piece Bagofti, in turn inspired by the life of artist, Francis Bacon. Performed by young Australian dancer, Adam Blanch, the piece made its Sheffield debut against the backdrop of a fine lithograph by Francis Bacon from the city’s collection, which went on show at the gallery especially for the event.

More than 120 dance-ophiles, art lovers and Millennium Gallery passers-by were able to get close enough to the dancer to become immersed in his electric performance and the rapturous, evocative music. On the wall on the other side of the room the figure in the Francis Bacon lithograph seemed to be in rapt dialogue with the movement unfolding on the dancefloor.

Gary also led a ‘have-a-go’ contemporary dance workshop (not something he often does) and was impressed by the quality of the participants’ achievements in one short hour and hopes to work with us again in the future. I, for one, am looking forward to his return.

But before then, we have the fruits of another creative partnership to enjoy. On Wednesday 9 November, 6-7pm, dance will return to the Millennium Gallery once more as part of Passing Through, a new free performance in collaboration with Striking Attitudes and Sheffield Theatres. Hope to see you there!

Image: © Anne Doncaster - Rocket & Spade.


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