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David Bower of Signdance Collective blogs on the work and travels of a dynamic sign dance performance company

Istanbul

24 April 2008

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Outline of the city of Istanbul from the sea

Istanbul is an amazing city, full of history that is at once both ancient and contemporary. There's a lot of tourist blurb that de-sensitizes and strangely makes mundane what is in fact is an intensely inspiring and vibrant hub of energy. It sits on one of Eurasia’s most volatile faultlines; it runs from north to south down the Bosphorus straits. People in Istanbul look to the antiquity of the Aya Sofya, and count their blessings. There is stuff here that I no longer see back home in the...

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David Bower on the highs and the wyrrd's of this years' Signdance programme

26 March 2008

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Isolte Avrila of Signdance Collective. Photo Nitra Festival

Okay, so what ‘ails. Well quite a fair bit, its a big un' for us at the Signdance Collective this year. First, over the next few months, I will be reporting the events in the run-up for the Signdance collective showcase. The whole thing’s called The High-Wyrrd Showcase, and it is going to be held over a long weekend in the quaint little old market town of High Wycombe. It will all begin on Friday 19 - Sunday 21 September. As of now, the schedule is shaping up nicely, and we believe...

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David Bower gives an evocative account of Signdance's trip to India in India 2009

10 February 2009

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The tired hot sun rose wearily over the horizon, as we meandered our way from the airport down recently well heeled motorways into Bangalore. Pass the night time fires. Mingling into the dawn rush hour traffic of wagons, carts, tripod taxis and cars, all ducking and weaving like Shiva's dance of life. Shushing into ever the increasing quietude, pass carnivalesque' Krishna temples, Bangalore receded into the east as we rose up into the Deccan hills through ancient villages, exuding an ineffable...

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Part two of David Bower's account of Signdance's work in India 2009 part two

28 February 2009

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On reading the Hindu Times, one article seeks to illustrate the different ways people have of describing India. In so many words, one school tries to categorise India as having "a beginning, a middle and a full stop". It basically tries to pigeon-hole India: the writer goes on to say that it is ludicrous to attempt or even want to do this. In my layman's opinion, I couldn’t agree more. To me India is infinite, and the matrices multi-prismatic; all of life is here, the trials, the...

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Part three of David Bower's stunning account of Signdance's trip to India in 2009

27 April 2009

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photo of performer Isolte Avrila

Visually India is a very powerful place to be. Some Deaf people talk about visual music. For the Deaf the view out the window is our visual radio. The many sights that I saw remained etched in my minds eye. Now that I’m back home, it all remains vividly superimposed on everything I see. For instance a quiet British country road teems with an almost hallucinatory vista of Indian life. It’s dificult to comprehend why we don't have the same diversity of life here in these...

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SDC Dances For A Lost Traveller (previously Three Films + One)

27 June 2009

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In rehearsal with  Here musicians : Liran Donin , Mark Holub & Luke Barlow

Signdance Collective is at The Warehouse Theatre in Croydon for a three week run. So far it  has been a mixture of Time Out Critics Choice!  to small but beautifully formed and loving audiences. It's a tough time for Signdance Collective, with funding challanges, relocation etc. but it's a good time for our art. The company is making & presenting  work that we really believe in. Work - that may be challanging to the mainstream - but is none-the-less our art. We are finding the strength...

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Signdance are now company in residence at Buckinghamshire New University

22 November 2009

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distorted photo of performers on stage

The times They are a-changin'... We have some very cool events coming up , and this brief blog is an intermediary! On 3 December 2009 SDC will help launch Arts Council England  South East  Accentuate Project, at The Brighton Dome. January 2010, SDC becomes company-in-residence at Bucks New University  We are excited about this new development , as SDC will finally have a home .We have invited Anjali Dance Company to also perform at the launch and really looking forward to working with the...

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Signdance Collective's new base at Bucks New University

17 January 2010

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a black and white photo of two hands held palm to palm

SDC has a new base...well, its first ever real base, at Bucks New University, High Wycombe! Up until now the company/collective has existed virtually, without admin, storage, rehearsal or production space. The new facilities are splendid, offer wonderful opportunities for Signdance Collective artists and collaborators to create music, dance, film and music. This new partnership will open up exciting possibilities and give us core support from university tutors and...

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David Bower stars in Little Voices - a new film by Post Graduate Students at Glamorgan University / Welsh Film Academy with Screen Wales.

9 August 2010

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production shot

Little Voices is produced by Chris Colton, directed by Chris McFall, and co-stars Rebecca Hurst. Producer Chris Colton sent David Bower the script for Little Voices after contacting him through Signdance Collective. His immediate impression was that it was unsentimental, uncompromising, and edgy, with a chunk of grit thrown in for good measure. The film is the story of an isolated deaf man struggling to cope with the loss of his partner. David Bower says: "To me it is a strong metaphorical...

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Signdance Collective present New Gold Phase 2

18 October 2010

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photo of dancers against a white background

Long days into the night! We haven't stopped at all this year. Signdance Collective has been creating our new street signdance show, 'New Gold'! Supported by: Create Compete Colaborate , ACCENTUATE Creative Campus , Bucks New University , Arts Council England. We have also been performing both Dances For A lost Traveller and New Gold at lots of very cool venues! These are just a few! The National Theatre of Slovenia in Nova Gorica , Lent Festival Maribor, Ana Desetnica Ljbljana ,The Siti...

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El Grande Signdance 2011 Diario

4 March 2011

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Latest News  -During 2011 and 2012! SDTI will be  working on major projects in the USA (at  Urban Warrior  N.C with Proffesor Roger Braswell  and in San Francisco with dancer Antoine Hunter'Company UrbanJazzDance.Com www.AntoineHunter.com  ) , the U.K,  Greece, (Deaf Cltural Development Centres) In Slovenia (With Primoz  Bayziac and Ana  Desetnica) Austria (with Kultuur WekStaat) The Company has new performers a new base and exciting international...

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Signdance Theatre International SDC's Greek & Welsh& Turkish Tours

29 April 2011

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SDTI Arriving in Greece

March 30th untill April 4th -The Company (Signdance Theatre International / SDC)  was priviledged to participate at the Ankara Festival of Performance ETHOS / ETHICS . The Festival is  a regular mainstream event, but has the unique quality of having companies from Kurdistan, Iraq, Iran, and from the whole region. We were finally able to return after a five year absence, and it really did feel like a home-coming. With great organization, full theatres, and...

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SDC's International 'PITCH' A great success

17 June 2011

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photo of an outdoor sculpture in the shape of a large ear

Signdance Collective is in Greece/ performing, giving training workshops to actors and international sign-language interpreters, and in residency at several places across Greece. We have had major successes in Thessalonikki, Athens and Siphnos island. Five performances in Thess, Three shows in Athens, three shows in Siphnos, one at the opening of the VSA Festival on the island tomorrow. And fab audiences and audience response. This matched our successes at the ETHOS Festival Ankara earlier in...

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Signdance Collective International tour continues

6 July 2011

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New Gold

Signdance Collectives directors have spent five fantastic days at the Ana Desetnica/111/) international festival in Slovenia, Ljbljana. We  are being mentored, coached, by its director Goro Osojnic as well as experiencing some of the best in international street theatre performance. We saw groups from Spain, Barcelona, The Netherlands, Ukraine, Canada, Germany, Iran, Slovenia, Mexico, France, Czech Republic and Belgium! . The artists are open and with wonderful communication skills. We are so...

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Autumms Up ! SDC's Autumm Tour & Thanks

29 August 2011

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Tingle Tangle Festival Graz Austria HERE ' the new international quartete

SDC and SDTI want to thank everyone that made SDC's summer so exciting and such smooth running! It was an incredible season , so congratulations to the company , guests , and in-particular our supportive partners- ETHOS Festival Turkey, Driving Inspiration U.K, Accentuate, Thessalonikki School Greece , Your Stage Athens ,! Ana Desetnica , CAMPAIGN! ,Flora Swlavidu Expressive Body Training  Athens, Kulturwerkstatt Graz, Urban Warrior N.C, Wycombe Ats Centre and our fantastic base -...

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Signdance Collective/ Theatre International to perform at National Cultural Diversity Network Awards 2011

12 November 2011

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SDTI Signdance Theatre International  Logo

Here we are almost  at the end of 2011. Its been quite a year for us. We have toured six different countries with some beautiful and exciting projects. Our highlights have included the international tours of New Gold with a bigger ensemble. Jacob Casselden and Laura Goulden have been a wonderful addition to  Signdance's work. They both worked with us on the 'HERE' quartet and we are looking forward  to working with them on  future projects. We have been involved...

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SDC 2012 World Tour. Join us !

28 January 2012

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Filming in Greece/ Athenas Temple during the 2011European Tour

Signdance Collective/ International Signdance Theatre 2012 Tour Taking a leaf out of an age old tradition and trekking the road less travelled, we can confirm that we are continuing our international tours and collaborating with the wild and free artists of the world. We have been collaborating and touring this way long before it became the buzz words here and were incredibly a flagship organisation for a while, before the more sensitive artizens among us began to choke on their breakfast,...

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Stuck In The Middle With You and Lovin'It!

8 September 2012

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Black and White photograph of a signer standing next to David Bower dressed in white shirt and braces

The Company was neither part of Unlimited or Liberty, but! What a Great summer for SDC! Our international tours with Ana Desetnica and The Lent Festival in Slovenia, with Salvia  and The British Council in Estonia, plus tours to The USA and Austria's Kulturwerkstaat were great! We were selected for SHOWTIME - The London 2012 Festival which covered both the Olympics and Paralympics. We were also lucky to work with TOGETHER! Fest in Newham so we were very much in the picture we...

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Rapid Intervention - a film by Mark Collins

21 September 2012

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Black and white film poster of a young person's face behind the barrel of a gun

Set in a sleepy seaside community where nothing out of the ordinary happens, Chris Davidson is on a journey fraught with physical, mental and spiritual obstacles. His internal struggle with a diminishing faith is coming to a head as he strives to keep his life on track The larger than life fragments of our existence pieced together like an entwining kaleidoscopic playback of our lives magnified on a bigger screen. A gritty yet reflective film with elements of the supernatural, this dramatic...

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Signdance 2013 Spring Tour

21 April 2013

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Signdance Collective's 2013 United States East Coast tour  Of Half A Penny and The Other Side Of The Coin   a phenominal success.  Happy Spring! Signdance Collective's 2013 -Tour started with performances in New York City at the No Passport Conference / New York University on February 28th and March 1st We were also invited to deliver workshops and took part in the conference it self at New York University. Dead Days Beyond Help (Our in-house band) also played two gigs...

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CARTHAGE By Caridad Svich/ SDC's New International Collaboration GRAZ EDITION

4 October 2013

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After  Signdance Collective's second USA tour in 2013. to the West Coast...... The company reunited in Austria and met with director Beatriz Cabur to work on ‘Carthage’ new play written by playwright Caridad Svich. First things First. We made the space we were to work in for the next four days ready. Earth, gravel, dust Sitting above the ‘Fish & Gigs’ restaurant in Ligist, is a large abandoned room, remnants of gym equipment scattered everywhere: benches,...

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July 2008

26 July 2008

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David Bower of Signdance Collective.

Whoah!..I just left it hanging there. Since I last wrote, I think that in the last few months, I have experienced some of the most full, rich, intense, rewarding, and challenging times that I have ever had. Everything is happening for us here at the Signdance collective. Picking up from where I left. Istanbul was a mad, crazy, non-stop filming and rehearsal explosion. Our team comprised of Isolte Avilla (dancer), Primosh Bayzak(director), Caglar Kimyoncu (film-maker), and myself (dancer).   ...

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Autumn 2008

26 September 2008

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David Bower of Signdance Collective during a rehearsal of Travelling. Photo by Rob Walker

After Turkey, having created three of the pieces for 'Three Films + one', we set off to join Carovana in Sardinia to work on our final piece. This work, rather appropriately came to be called 'Travelling'. We had comissioned Carovana, a long time collaborator to create the work. They are based in Sardinia's capital, Cagliari. photo of performer The first problem we encountered was how to make the work in just a period of four weeks. As both Carovana and ourselves usually take two years to...

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Late Autumn Blog

26 October 2008

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David Bower and Isolte Avrila of Signdance Collective. Photo by Rob Walker

Greetings just got back from our holiday in Tunisia. First visit I hope of what will be many trips to Africa. Whilst we were there, we indulged ourselves in a little nightlife, boogie on down! We didnt do all that much travelling, it was just good to stay still for a change. You know like how if you stare at the road on a long journey, and you come to a stop, and everything still seems like its moving, thats what this break was like. The illusion of travelling, courtesy of Thomas Cook!. A bit...

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David Bower have set up a youtube channel

17 September 2009

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Signdance Collective 'signs of Brilliance' Time Out

I have just sent off the first off-line version of a film project that SDC have been working on. The great news is that SDC has its own channel on YouTube. There are currently four films on the site. 'Listen' - prepared by SDC music director Luke Barlow -Travelling and 'Here', are part of our latest production, 'Dances for a Lost Traveller'. The third - 'Firesigns' - is the result of an on-going collaboration with several Dutch artists. Joke Mennsink, director of ’Voor TV’ has been...

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