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Yorkshire Dance’s 40th Birthday

Wed 1 June 2022
The Big 40 web image (news story)

2022 marks Yorkshire Dance’s 40th Birthday. Wieke Eringa reflects on all the people who have made Yorkshire Dance the organisation it is today.

A big thanks from Artistic Director and CEO Wieke Eringa

“Celebrating our 40th birthday this year is a huge privilege and achievement for Yorkshire Dance.

I wish I could thank all the people who made this possible. Those with the vision and dedication to establish the Yorkshire Dance Centre, as it used to be known in 1982. The thousands of people who showed up to dance or to watch performances. The hundreds of staff and Trustees who give so much of themselves and of course the dance artists, teachers, workshop leaders, performers and makers. The mavericks, trouble makers, activists, nurturers who care, inspire, entice and provoke. I will never cease to be inspired by their creative spirit, passion and courage.

To dance is to connect with yourself and others in a unique way, being in the moment, feeling liberated, maybe even connecting beyond yourself to something bigger. This is radical, in a society that privileges mind over body, reason over feeling, profit over people, individualism over community. So, arriving at this moment in 2022 on the coat-tails of a pandemic which has isolated people in our communities and with major issues to tackle around climate change and social justice I remain convinced that our world needs dance more than ever: to create happiness, health, connection and change. 

We are marking our 40 years with a special programme including FRESH and Ageless festivals, culminating in a big celebration on December 2 with newly commissioned work. We hope you can be there. Over the next few months we’ll be reflecting on on 40 years.

For now, I will finish with a big THANKS to the two partners and funders without whom none of this would have been possible. Arts Council England and Leeds City Council have provided an essential foundation for four decades, enabling us to build new partnerships in sport, health and arts both locally and internationally. Long may we celebrate what they allow us to do. To reach people every day and make many lives that little bit happier, richer and more connected.”


Wieke Eringa

CEO & Artistic Director

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