Sussex Dance Network was founded in 2013 with the mission to connect like-minded independent dancers with other artists in the wider community. As an artist-led group, the organisation hosts dance classes, activities and shares experiences with its members. Sarah Richter-Rose spoke to Copperdollar Studios about their philosophy, upcoming events and their all-important vision day held in The Stable.
Hello! Could you tell me a little bit about yourself?
My name is Sarah, I have trained in dance and been volunteering with the Sussex Dance Network for several years. This year I have also been working as part of the project the Network has run, funded by Arts Council England.
Could you tell me about the event you put on recently at Copperdollar Studios?
We hosted a ‘Visioning Day’ as part of our funded project, where we invited both members and non-members to come into the space and share their views about the Network and the direction we should be moving in. It is really important to us that our members and followers have a voice and are able to shape the artistic movement of the Network. The morning was facilitated by the wonderful dramaturg Lou Cope, from the Centre of Applied Dramaturgy. Lou worked with us to discover how people see the Network currently, what desires and needs they have of the Network, and what sort of things they would like to see in the future.
How did you hear about the studio space?
As a dancer in Brighton, I have known about the space for a while. I have used it for rehearsal before, and through the network also attended workshops and class hosted there.
What is your favourite aspect of Copperdollar Studios and what makes it different from other spaces you’ve used?
I like how it looks, how it has been renovated. It is really nice to have a space that offers something unique and feels so artistic. Previously I have been in the Hayloft space, so it was lovely to get to use the Stable for our event. I think what makes it a great space is that it has a really creative feel to it, but can be adapted to many different types of creative pursuits rather than being designed solely with one purpose in mind. I feel that it helped the atmosphere of our vision day to be in a relaxed and inspiring environment rather than a more standard office-based meeting room. It also allowed us to move more freely in the space rather than being in a rigid seating formation.
When did Sussex Dance Network form and what is the mission of the organisation?
Formed in 2013, originally as the Brighton Dance Network, our supportive and increasingly inclusive network exists to enable artists to explore their ideas, to foster new relationships between artists, audiences and communities and to allow both amateurs and other non-professionals to engage with work and let themselves be seen as artists.
What kind of classes do you host and how often are they?
We run a weekly dance class on Tuesdays from 19:00-20:30 at the Dorset Gardens Methodist Church. We also program workshops and dance intensives. This year we have also run talks and performances as part of our funded project.
Where could we see more of Sussex Dance Network’s projects?
Follow us on social media or our website to find out more! We have several exciting workshops coming up in November, with Katie Dale-Everett Dance, Niharika Kasturi and a chance to explore Wayne McGregor’s new choreographic technology. We also welcome any queries via email. Our social media handles are: