In My Beginning Is My End' by Stephen Pritchard

‘The instrumentalisation of our arts and culture reduces our culture to money – to economic outcomes, cost benefit analyses, jobs created by the “creative industries” (Adorno turns in his grave), etc.; and to numbers – people and places are counted and analysed, their individuality, their cultural differences, their collective identities, their very humanity turned into dots and lines on graphs and pins and coloured segments on maps.’

Taken from the blog: ART, ACTIVISM & POLITICS IN THE PLACE WHERE WE LIVE by Dr Stephen Pritchard - for full article

This is culture-by-numbers.  A dot-to-dot culture.  A culture of imposed uniformity, categorisation, stereotyping and exclusion.  A new system that meets the insatiable demands of neoliberalism based upon an old system of elitism, power, wealth, property, manipulation, and control.

Instrumentalism reproduces and reinforces our subjugation, our suppression, our exploitation, our oppression.  When our arts and our cultures are instrumentalised (both directly and indirectly) by governments and government agencies (central and local alike), corporations, NGOs, and other third sector organisations alike, as they clearly are today, they become vehicles for “outcomes” which are inherently political and economic in nature. “ (Pritchard, 2018)

Book Launch - Choreomania: Dance and Disorder: Kélina Gotman

A reminder the launch event for Choreomania: Dance and Disorder (OUP, 2018) will be taking place at the Horse Hospital, Bloomsbury, next Wednesday 20th June 6.30-8.30pm. Featuring film screenings, theory bursts, and good cheer. 


On the book:


Choreomania: Dance and Disorder

Kélina Gotman

Oxford Studies in Dance Theory, Oxford University Press, 2018, 384pp.

When political protest is read as epidemic madness, religious ecstasy as nervous disease, and angular dance moves as dark and uncouth, the disorder being described is choreomania. At once a catchall term to denote spontaneous gestures and the unruly movements of crowds, choreomania emerged in the nineteenth century at a time of heightened class conflict, nationalist policy, and colonial rule. In this book, author Kélina Gotman examines these choreographies of unrest, rethinking the modern formation of the choreomania concept as it moved across scientific and social scientific disciplines. Reading archives describing dramatic misformations of bodies and body politics, she shows how prejudices against expressivity unravel, in turn revealing widespread anxieties about demonstrative agitation. This history of the fitful body complements stories of nineteenth-century discipline and regimentation. As she notes, constraints on movement imply constraints on political power and agency. In each chapter, Gotman confronts the many ways choreomania works as an extension of discourses shaping colonialist orientalism, which alternately depict riotous bodies as dangerously infected others, and as curious bacchanalian remains. Through her research, Gotman also shows how beneath the radar of this colonial discourse, men and women gathered together to repossess on their terms the gestures of social revolt.



Introduction: Choreomania, Another Orientalism
Part I: Excavating Dance in the Archives
1. Obscuritas Antiquitatis: Institutions, Affiliations, Marginalia
2. Madness after Foucault: Medieval Bacchanals
3. Translatio: St. Vitus's Dance, Demonism and the Early Modern
4. The Convulsionaries: Antics on the French Revolutionary Stage
5. Mobiles, Mobs and Monads: Nineteenth-Century Crowd Forms
6. Médecine Rétrospective: Hysteria's Archival Drag

Part II: Colonial and Postcolonial Stages: Scenes of Ferment in the Field
7. "Sicily Implies Asia and Africa": Tarantellas and Comparative Method
8. Ecstasy-belonging in Madagascar and Brazil
9. Ghost Dancing: Excess, Waste and the American West
10. "The Gift of Seeing Resemblances": Cargo Cults in the Antipodes
11. Monstrous Grace: Blackness and the New Dance "Crazes"
12. Coda: Moving Fields, Modernity and the Bacchic Chorus 

“A conceptual tour-de-force! Gotman effectively mobilizes Foucault, Said, Foster, Agamben, and Gilroy to assemble a discursive history of choreomania. Progressive, 21st-century thinking that incorporates critical race theory, feminist theory, and the crucial critique of modern scientific approaches to movement. A triumph for dance studies that reflects an always-changing world-in-motion, ever-activated by shifting political circumstances.”—Thomas F. DeFrantz, Professor of Dance, African and African American Studies, and Theatre Studies, Duke University

 “Offering an astute history of ideas about dance that charts both fears and desires about bodies in movement, Gotman crafts a truly insightful way of thinking, which is to say moving, across and among the archives and the fields in which ‘dance’ is practiced and given to remain, deployed and never quite contained. Throughout Gotman’s keen analyses, 19th-century choreomania is read not only in relationship to but also as the best and the worst of modern biopolitics.”—Rebecca Schneider, Professor of Theatre Arts and Performance Studies, Brown University

Elisabeth Murdoch's appointment to ACE signals Corporate takeover of the Arts in UK: Sign Petition

Elisabeth Murdoch's appointment to Arts Council England National Council is a corporate takeover of the arts - a takeover facilitated by Sir Nicholas Serota and his wife Teresa Gleadowe

"The appointment of Rupert Murdoch’s daughter Elisabeth Murdoch to Arts Council England’s National Council is not only deeply troubling, given her close ties to the Murdoch corporate empire, but is also a glaring example of how nefarious the UK arts establishment has become. The appointment of ex-Tate boss Sir Nicholas Serota as Chair of Arts Council England has clearly ushered in a new era of favouritism and nepotism in which a tiny select elite grease the palms of each other and their friends and family. Just look at the biographies of the other members of the National Council."


Radio Show: Guest with Annie Turner on The Outer Limits

The Outer Limits with Annie Turner

Absolutely thrilled to be able to let you know that joining us in the Radio Newark studio on Monday 18th December is Paul Sadot. Dancer, choreographer, director and actor.

He plays "Tuff" in one of my top five films of all time - Shane Meadows' Dead Man's Shoes, set in the heart of the Midlands alongside Paddy Considine, Gary Stretch and Newark's own Toby Kebbell and unfortunately for him he meets a very nasty end indeed.

He'll be choosing some of his favourite tracks and chatting about all sorts. Please join us at 8pm on 107.8FM or online

KISMIF (keep it simple make it fast) Conference - call for proposals

You don’t have to research punk to get involved in KISMIF Conference, it’s about sociology, popular music, youth and arts cultures and on and on. It’s a huge event in social sciences, humanities and arts. It’s not only about music, it’s a fantastic academic experience. It’s a life experience. Make your proposal today here


 PoP turns 10: Celebrating the Popular, Practising the Urban - London Conference

Less than three weeks to go until PoP turns 10: Celebrating the Popular, Practising the Urban. 

Registration closes on Sunday 12th November.

As part of their ten-year anniversary celebrations, The PoP [Performances of the Popular] Moves committee, in partnership with the CPAD research group at the University of East London, invites you to our annual conference.

PoP turns 10: Celebrating the Popular, Practising the Urban
Saturday, 18th November 2017, 09:45-18:00
University of East London, Stratford, London, U.K

The conference engages with intersections between popular practices and the Urban: the city as a space where culture is created, represented and disputed.


Keynote: ‘Urban Choreographies. The Power of the Aesthetic’
Professor Gabriele Klein, University of Hamburg


Speakers include:

“MAKE MY SKIN: Intimate Regeneration of the City”
Oriana Haddad, Embodimenta

Somaesthetics, Rhythm Tap and Populism – Urban Jungle
Dr. Christina Lovey, The Women's Rhythm Tap Collective

"Mazurka in the Atlantic region - from rural Polish folk dance to trans-continental urban popular phenomenon?" Stephanie Alisch, Humboldt University Berlin

The Uploading Movement(s): Understanding the Relevance of Black Lives Matter through Viral Dance
Angelica-Rose Gonzales, University of Roehampton

Flash mobs, Remixed:‘nationalising the global’ in Indian popular performance
Becca Savory Fuller, University of Exeter, with the National Institute of Advanced Studies (NIAS), Bangalore.

From Globeleza to Karol Conka: Retracing Black Dancing Bodies in Brazil’s Mainstream Media since the Country’s Redemocratization
Dr. Cristina F. Rosa, University of Roehampton        

Urbanising body in Japan: Popular dancehall culture in the early twentieth century
Dr. Yuiko Asaba, Royal Holloway, University of London

Danced dialogues: spaces of exchange in a northern barrio of Quito, Ecuador
Dr. Sofie Narbed, Royal Holloway, University of London

Moving Politically: Urban gentrification and Hip Hop Dance Theatre
Paul Sadot, University of Chichester

From the Popular to the Avant-Garde: Jerome Robbins’ Ballets: USA ‘Keepin’ it Cool’
Dr. Stacey Prickett, University of Roehampton

Collegiality and the Crew: Fixing ‘Broken Britain’ through Ashley Banjo’s Big Town Dance (2014)
Dr. Laura Robinson, University of East London

“Welcome to Las Vegas”: Architexture of Urban Liminality in So You Think You Can Dance and Step Up: All In
Dr. Elena Benthaus, University of Melbourne

Toyi-Toying: South Africa’s Popular Dance of Protest in Townships, Suburbs, and Shopping Malls
Dr. Sarahleigh Castelyn, University of East London               

Queer Tango London: Does Integrating Queer Urban Dance Spaces mean Disintegration?
Dr. Ray Batchelor

“Titos of Manila: Queering Hip Hop Spaces in Manila”
Dr. J. Lorenzo Perillo, University of Illinois at Chicago

The conference will also host the Society of Dance Research AGM.


Registration is essential for the conference. Please register at link below


Society of Dance Research members: Free*    Students/Unwaged: £20      Full ticket price: £40

*Please note that if choosing the Society of Dance Research (SDR) ticket option that all ticket holders will need to be signed up members to the society. 



The Receptionist by Jenny Lu @ Raindance Film Festival

I was the ensemble acting coach on this film and they were a great ensemble indeed.

The current economic situation in the UK forces many people to seek work in businesses operating beyond the boundaries of law. Tina, a recent university graduate, starts working as a receptionist in a brothel run by the ruthless Lily. The escorts working for her, Sasa and Mei, need money for very different reasons but are equally committed to their jobs and, even more, their wages. Soon the Tina understands how money makes the world go round, but is it worth all the pain it creates, will it fill the void?
The Receptionist is a grim and all-too-real tale of disadvantaged immigrants trying to make a living by any means necessary. The escorts work and live in a dark, claustrophobic house on the outskirts of London, a city known to them only by name, an outside world that exists only beyond the brothel walls, unreachable to them. The Receptionist is a marvelous example of modern social realism cinema where the audience cares and fears for the protagonists from the first shot till the credits roll, and everyone is left with questions which only they themselves can answer.
Adam Samuel Court

Artists 4 Artists presents HumanKind

September 29  / September 30 at 7.30pm


Presented in partnership with Redbridge Drama Centre

A visceral and eruptive triple bill from hip hop theatre network Artists 4 Artists featuring three commissions from four cutting-edge hip hop theatre artists Botis Seva, Caramel Soldier and a collaboration from Joshua Nash and Lee Halls. HumanKind explores the deepest shades of society, what connects our mind, our selves and our nation.

Artists 4 Artists in residence at Redbridge Drama Centre have provided Botis, Caramel, Joshua & Lee with mentoring from hip hop theatre innovators Curtis James, Kwesi Johnson & Robert Hylton. HumanKind is currently a work in progress show and will be available to tour from 2018.

Ticket Information


PoP Moves Turns 10: Celebrating the Popular, Practicing the Urban Conference

PoP Moves Turns 10: Celebrating the Popular, Practicing the Urban

A conference to be held on Saturday 18th November 2017 at the University of East London.

I will be presenting a paper entitled: 

Moving Politically: Urban gentrification and Hip Hop Dance Theatre

The paper examines the state-led commodification of arts and culture, and the interconnected elements such as mentorships and funding strategies that impact on hip hop dance/theatre artists’ freedom of movement in the UK. It illustrates the nexus between arts initiatives such as Sadler’s Wells Breakin’ Convention project and Arts Council England National Portfolio Organisations and political power. Furthermore, it links these supervisory structures to wider notions of urban gentrification, cultural gatekeeping in UK arts and a globalised corporate initiative: as demonstrated by ‘Olympicopolis’ in South East London. In doing so it proposes a clear link to popular performance practices and the legitimization of gentrification.
Drawing on artist interviews alongside the work of cultural and performance theorists Lorey (2015), Gotman (2015) and Lepecki (2013), ideas of choreopolicing, precarity and dialectics are used to define a spatial narrative through which the HHDT model can be articulated and analysed. The paper proposes a space for the exploration of future counter-narratives that might consider another way of doing and thinking divergent from conventional HHDT choreographic practices.

Humankind - Artists 4 Artists coming soon!

Artists 4 Artists presents


Friday 29th & Saturday 30th September 7.30pm

Presented in partnership with Redbridge Drama Centre

A visceral and eruptive triple bill from hip hop theatre network Artists 4 Artists featuring three commissions from four cutting-edge hip hop theatre artists Botis Seva, Caramel Soldier and a collaboration from Joshua Nash and Lee Halls. HumanKind explores the deepest shades of society, what connects our mind, our selves and our nation.

Artists 4 Artists in residence at Redbridge Drama Centre have provided Botis, Caramel, Joshua & Lee with mentoring from hip hop theatre innovators Curtis James, Kwesi Johnson & Robert Hylton. HumanKind is currently a work in progress show and will be available to tour from 2018.

Supported by Arts Council England & Greenwich Dance