Founded in 2013, State of Grace is a performance and dance-theatre collective based in North East England. We make work, train ourselves and others and develop dynamic, meaningful participation both in the UK and overseas - drawing strong creative, developmental and strategic relationships between different geographies, people who take part and audiences.
MISSION State of Grace creates thrilling, vivid, unforgettable performance. Our work attracts new, younger and diverse audiences whilst reaching deeply into diverse local, regional, national and international communities: we strive to develop meaningful, authentic, high-quality performance work that celebrates diversity, openness and inclusion.
The Company operates a Core Ensemble of emerging, early-career artists and works with a shifting group of expert, guest practitioners and people who have never practised formally - creating intense meeting-grounds of dignity and democracy, building bold processes of acculturation, artistic development and expression. Our Core Artists come from backgrounds in theatre, dance, music, film, fine and digital arts, writing and inter-disciplinary performance. The Company grows as they grow – it is a distinct learning journey and an organisation with learning and opportunity at its heart: for our artists and all the people we work with.
AIMS State of Grace aims to:
Continually evolve, deepen and widen our artistic, participation and audience development practices - further embedding and sharing our work within our professional/non-professional communities, including international communities.
Through empathy and reciprocity, grow and share more widely high quality work that gives dignity to different ways of living that exist in our diverse communities - encouraging interaction beyond cultural, racial, class or social origins.
Stimulate and galvanise practice in high quality performance and performance-making, development, training and research.
Increase the depth and quality of active participation in performance development/training, and the number of artists accessing development/training and sharing skills.
Contribute to the growth of creative/learning-centred Digital Resources through the recording and sharing of training, making and participative process, building accessible Open Source material for the Creative and Learning industries.
The last 36 months has seen the Company’s work grow and its influence build with real energy, both across the North East and with partners in Europe and Southern Africa. We have worked with Northern Stage, Live Theatre, ZENDEH, Dance City, Space Six, Northern Platforms, Durham University, Resolutions and Dance Edits (all UK), Odin Teatret (Denmark), Savanna Trust (Zimbabwe), the National Arts Festival, Newcastle Arts HQ, the Market Theatre, Alexandra Youth in Action Ensemble, Makhana Drama Festival, Wot If Trust, Intlantsi Creative Project, KZN DAC and Hillbrow Theatre (all South Africa).
Our work builds from the centre of the diverse performer, growing authentic worlds from reality and imagination, telling stories that resonate and empowering artists to reach as far as they can within dynamic performative and fully-engaged, audience-focused contexts – be this a studio or creative laboratory, a theatre, a street, a rooftop, a desert, a mountain, a community facility. Our uniqueness lies in our fusing of traditional training and development in text and movement with the physical collaborative approach that has grown out of Central/Eastern Europe over the last 60 years, often developing the further integration of cutting-edge, contemporary digital arts technologies as a mechanism to express meaning and reach out to wider audiences. The Company has an engaged, digital reach of 85,000+.
CORE COMPANY Artistic Director Benedict Ayrton Lizzie J Klotz Associate Artists Sean Cotterill Charlie Dearnley Alice Henry Peter Kerry-Forbes Lizzie J Klotz Rosie Macari Alicia Meehan Carly-Jo Naylor Alys North Alex Rowland