On being part of the local cast for Alleyne Dance’s ‘Far from Home’

On being part of the local cast for Alleyne Dance’s ‘Far from Home’

Diego and I volunteered to join the Ipswich cast for ‘Far from Home’ because DanceEast approached EncoreEast looking for a wider demographic. We had taken part in an Alleyne Dance workshop, loved their film ‘Re:United’, and the images and trailer for ‘Far from Home’ looked stunning. I started from a place of trust and intrigue as well as trepidation.   

Being in a local cast can feel like being a square peg pushed into a round hole made by previous local casts. Intergenerational work also makes me nervous as I have a particular dread of having to be somebody’s mother.  Happily, the experience so far has been nothing less than brilliant. None of my fears have been realised and my very best hopes have been far exceeded.

Two full days with Sadé Alleyne left me physically and mentally tired in a really good way. The clever structure began with learning movement material – the best way of getting to know each other, to feel safe and brave before attempting to improvise together. Sadé talked about different aspects of the production, and the inspirations, personal legacies and ideas it contains. Gradually we were encouraged to take more creative risks and we became more immersed and invested in the piece. We meet the rest of the cast next week, but I have a real belief that we all matter and together we will create a diverse community of equals.

Sadé is a passionate, inspiring and energising teacher, dancer and artistic director. Her enthusiasm and excitement are contagious and build our confidence. I have a strong sense of the work being made with us, not placed on us. The piece performed in Ipswich will not be the same as the one performed in London or Newcastle. We are all truly local casts.

I am excited for the next stage of this journey, meeting new colleagues, fitting the bits together and sharing the whole with an audience.

Book Tickets https://www.danceeast.co.uk/performances/far-from-home-alleyne-dance/

Jeanette Siddall