A number of dance creatives in East London have been awarded thousands of pounds worth of bursaries as part of the Dance Enterprise Ideas Fund.

Eight pitches were chosen from 23 shortlisted artists, in a day long summit that took place on March 21.

A total of £25,000 worth of grants were handed out.

Polly Risbridger, Director of East London Dance, said after the event: “The Dance Enterprise Ideas Fund panel were overwhelmed with the quality of the ideas being pitched today and with the confidence and panache in which the pitches were delivered.

“It was an extremely tough decision making process but the selected ideas demonstrate an eclectic and diverse range of projects that have huge potential for the future.

“The pitches were testament to the creativity, entrepreneurialism, and generosity of the UK independent dance sector.

“Each and every one showed such passion about the impact they wanted to make. We can’t wait to see where they go next.”

Winners included performances about police brutality towards black men in America and the UK, projects to help deaf artists and people hard of hearing interact with dance, and even a pilot for a new talk show and documentary about international dance.

Cathy Waller, who was awarded £1,470 for her Sensory Sound Project, said: “‘Winning the Dance Enterprise Ideas Fund means a great deal for our Company, and most importantly, for the future of deaf audiences across the world being able to access and enjoy dance.”

Lanre Malaoulu, whose project I Can’t Breathe was given £2,260, said: “*I’m really excited that East London Dance and partners have taken a real interest in my work and its potential for the future.

“The financial support is invaluable as it allows me to have the time and space to explore my artistic voice through my chosen idea.”

This is the second year the Dance Enterprise Ideas Fund has taken place.

It was set up in 2015 to help dance creatives to research, test and launch new ideas, as part of the Dance Enterprise Hub.

It is partnered by Hoxton Hall, Studio Wayne McGregor and the University of East London.

For more information on the Dance Enterprise Ideas Fund, click here.

Image:  Jeremy Freedman