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  • stephanieorkneydan

The growth of dance artistry in Orkney

There are always dance companies coming to Orkney to offer support and bring the joy of dance as an art form to the community. Orkney has always been a place of art culture and history from music to storytelling, dance has never been something that has been been seen as ART in Orkney it’s looked at more as Scottish folk dance or an activity for children. Infact the arts culture show little value to dance and show very clear lack of understanding to dance And the value for dance as an Independent art form in its own right.

i have lived my teenage to adult years in Orkney developing my teaching pedagogy and andragogy in dance educating for the past 15 years.


I stated my life as a ballet student and crossed over to contemporary and creative practice at a very young age of 12, developing an understanding of the art of dance at such a young age visiting dance companies meeting dancer and dance creators.

when I grew up to be a dancer myself I wanted to teach creative dance to young participants in Orkney. from the go I was told that’s not a type of dance that Orkney would understand, this thrusted me into teaching your basic skills and techniques of dance. This took me on my joinery of teaching so for that I am eternally grateful.


this out come dose not change to the fact that at every stage of my creative journey I have been told by people in Orkney dance is just not that understood here in Orkney by education system, OIC, sport centres and the arts community itself.

when one watches from afar the world of dance become more integrated into our Orkney community by those who do not understand it or value and have shown no support to the dance community within Orkney already, to reap then reap the riches of it and allow a rather unpleasant under devaluation of the creative practice that lives and grows within Orkney already.

dance can only grow in Orkney with sustainability of the educators and our growing dance community. The growing dance community really see the real value of what we already have On offer.

orkney has a vast diverse rich dance community of value and culture but it’s only seen by the young people who embrace it, not just as a hobie but a real life style choice, the parents see the value in their children’s eyes when their self confidence and self esteem blossom when performing. Our Scottish traditional dance community see the joy in a gathering to jig to the beautiful sound of the fiddle. For we see the value is not in the sports aspect or the skill of dance it is in-fact fuelled by the richness of dance artistry.

in Orkney we have two knowledge dance faculties of education ready to support and nurture dance skills and short blasts of artistry.

we have young dancers in the wings waiting to be guided and supported by an organisation that really really understands creative dance practice, creative dance process, safe dance practice, residency applications, safe dance creative spaces and are like minded able to mentor, guild and support the next generation of dance artists in Orkney.

who can support such an important legacy of dance history culture and most importantly artistry? my own professional opinion it would HAVE ti be another dance artist or educator ready to mentor the next generation.

in my opinion Orkney have educators in dance who can become representatives and a voice for dance that are constantly over looked and undermine






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