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Jo Bannon and Charlotte Darbyshire Seeing, Saying, Sensing Talk

Independent Dance in partnership with Sadler’s Wells 

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Jo Bannon posing with an extension lead

Choreographer Jo Bannon and Artistic Director of Candoco Dance Company, Charlotte Darbyshire explore how we see, say, and sense the world around us.

Explore Jo’s research into how different bodies, identities, and sensory perceptions impact how we experience the world around us.

The conversation takes its inspiration from Jo’s current research Blind Magic. This explores the parallels between the hidden choreographies of sleight of hand magic shows, dance, and the lived experience of visual disability.

This work is at the meeting point of sensory awareness practices taught in dance training, the tactile sleight of hand techniques used within magic, and the overt and covert strategies (or crip expertise) used by visually disabled people navigating the world through senses other than sight.

This talk is presented by Independent Dance in partnership with Sadler’s Wells and complements a weekend lab led by Jo Bannon, Holly Thomas and Katherine Hall at Siobhan Davies Studios exploring how we see, say, and sense the world around us.

The talk will be recorded and available in Independent Dance’s Digital Library following the event.

Supported through public funding by the National Lottery through Arts Council England.

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Jo Bannon

Jo is a UK-based artist working in performance, choreography and live art. Jo also works as a dramaturg, educator, and writer and is a founder member of artist collective Residence.

Jo’s work is concerned with identity, sensory perception, and human encounter and explores how our physical bodies experience the world around us and how this sensory experience can or cannot be conveyed. Jo’s work is informed by her identity as a disabled woman with albinism and attempts to unpick the ways we look, hear, and sense our immediate environment in order to rethink or make unfamiliar these intrinsic human behaviours. Jo’s performances often manifest as intimate encounters designed for single or small audiences alongside staged theatre work and installations.

Jo has presented work in the UK, Europe, South America, USA, China, South Korea and Australia including The Barbican, IBT Festival, Art Gallery of Western Australia, Arnolfini, Itau Cultural Sao Paulo, Battersea Arts Centre, The Times Museum Guangzhou, Gessneralle Zurich, and the National Theatre. Jo’s film ‘Feeling Thing’ premiered on Sadler’s Wells Digitial Stage in 2022.

Jo is supported by a number of organisations including Arts Council England, British Council, Unlimited and MAYK and has received major commissions and funding to support the making and touring of her work alongside critical acclaim from national and international press.

Charlotte Darbyshire

Charlotte Darbyshire is an independent dance artist and currently the Artistic Director of Candoco Dance Company. She has nearly 30 years’ experience working in contemporary dance, specifically in somatic and inclusive practices as a performer, maker, teacher, and director of two award-winning films. Charlotte is also a certified Movement Therapist.

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