About

Tipperary Dance Platform

TDP’20 international dance festival

1-11 October 2020

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Tipperary Dance Platform - who are we ?

Tipperary Dance Residency is an artist-led non-profit organisation that engages creatively with the public and builds capacity for the dance sector through multiple forms and opportunities. Rooted in Jazmin Chiodi and Alexandre Iseli’s more than twenty years experience as artists, managers and curators, TDR delivers artistic excellence through Tipperary Dance Platform’s year-round programme (since 2008) and through the TDP’ international dance festival (since 2010). This is made possible thanks to a network of local, national and international partners and stakeholders that includes public authorities, venues, festivals, dance companies and artists.



A space to support an art form


In the last decade, Jazmin Chiodi and Alexandre Iseli have relentlessly elaborated a space for support and encounter, centred on artists and the relevance of artists’ work. A space in which dance pieces are not an end but a mean: a media between artists, their interrogations, and the public. We have tried to articulate collaborative relationships where artists and Tipperary Dance Platform work hand in hand in a supportive dialogue, to feed the pulse of a vivid community not based on products, but on life experiences, relationships, reflection and creativity.

Tipperary Dance Platform and the TDP’ international dance festival are led and curated by artists. With a track record counting over two decades performing, producing and touring internationally, they are well-aware of the reality that artists experience day-to-day. More than a providential infrastructure, Tipperary Dance Platform embodies a receptive interface, a supportive environment where live interaction empowers the voice of committed people (artists, partners, communities), helps them reach out and enrich our lives.

Since 2010, Tipperary Dance Platform has hosted many artists in residence, providing not only a studio but also a considerate external eye on their work by means of mentoring sessions. Masterclasses and Laboratories mentored by outstanding artists from all over Europe have fed the dance community with invaluable opportunities to experiment, receive fresh information and build up skills. Bursaries have facilitated the participation of artists in the TDP’ festival. Fellowships have provided opportunities for a more sustained practice, symposiums have favoured cross-sector encounters with academic partners.



An artist-led programme focused on artistic excellence


In late 2008, Jazmin Chiodi and Alexandre Iseli are appointed dance artists in Residence at the Excel Arts Centre in Tipperary, under the auspice of the Centre itself and the Local authority, Tipperary County Council. This sets off a journey towards the development of infrastructures, partnerships and programmes dedicated to injecting a new dimension into the County’s artistic life, and new ideas/possibilities into the professional dance sector. The programme unfolds under the name Tipperary Dance Platform.

TDP’, the Platform’s international dance festival is founded in 2010, marked by three peculiarities: it is artist-led, curated, and distant from any sizeable city. Several conclusions are drawn from this state of play: the festival must gather all available partnerships around the County. The festival must rely on creativity to combine resources in a critically under-resourced region and dance sector. The Platform must build its own regional dance ecology and create momentum to revive an artistic life that will attract both artists and audiences.

Focused on the highest artistic standards, the festival attracts some of the best contemporary dance artists across Europe, the likes of Tânia Carvalho, Lost Dog, Alexandra Waierstall, Pierre Pontvianne, François Veyrunes, Affari Esteri, including artists at the forefront of creation in Ireland, such as Liz Roche, Oona Doherty, John Scott.



A comprehensive development programme based on three strands




Creating synergies


Supported by the Arts Council of Ireland the Platform quickly understands that its ambition to create increasing opportunities depends on its ability to develop links with the outside. Information, resources, visibility and reputation are keys. An intense activity of relation-building and networking follows, generating interaction with companies, artists and organisations, attending many European platform events like the Düsseldorf Tanzmesse. Heads start turning from the European dance community towards the small locality of Tipperary.  In 2016, the Tipperary Dance Platform programme is acknowledged by the European Dance Network as an example and study case on best practice for relevance in the European dance sector. To date, the TDP programme and its curators have raised funds and partnerships with a large number of stakeholders including:



Dance in the community


Everyone has a body, and Tipperary Dance Platform considers that dance is not exclusively a specialists’ trade: in the last decade, more than three thousand children have taken part in TDP’s ongoing dance in schools programme, festival workshops or other events. Several groups participated in the creation of pieces that were performed in public. The documentary ‘More to Dance’ 2 produced by TDP in 2019 offers a poignant legacy on the profound impact of dance on children’s life, on their desire and ability to take ownership of their decisions, to collaborate peacefully, and on dance’s aptitude to positively shift the way some children are perceived by the adults who mentor them. In another age range, a group of senior women started dancing with Tipperary Dance Platform’s Age in Movement programme: some of them, nearly 80 years old, performed in public, and danced in the short film ‘September Days’ 3 produced by TDP. On many occasions, the very inclusive All Day Do Dance events gathered people of all ages and abilities for a full day of dance workshops.



Supporting dance artists


Since 2010, Tipperary Dance Platform has hosted many artists in residence, providing not only a studio but also a considerate external eye on their work by means of mentoring sessions. Masterclasses and Laboratories mentored by outstanding artists from all over Europe have fed the dance community with invaluable opportunities to experiment, receive fresh information and build up skills. Bursaries have facilitated the participation of artists in the TDP’ festival. Fellowships have provided opportunities for a more sustained practice, symposiums have favoured cross-sector encounters with academic partners.



TDP’: a social and civic space within a territory


This all-round development perspective drives Tipperary Dance Platform, hand in hand with the professional sector and the public and lead its directors to curate a festival that multiplies forms, places, and opportunities. The TDP’ dance festival has been programming international and Irish-based artists, and delivering productions and experimental installations, screendance video sessions, symposiums, masterclass programmes for dancers, community workshops, laboratories, exhibitions, cine-club, and of course performances, in both theatres and non-conventional public spaces. The TDP’ festival has shown the work of more than 200 artists over more than a decade. An innovatively multi-town and multi-venue programme that illustrates Tipperary Dance Platform’s ability to cultivate high ambitions and stay deeply anchored in the realities of a territory.

By giving equal importance to the Art form and its audience, Tipperary Dance Platform aims to articulate the relationship between the public and a professional community of artists relying on the strength of an existing arts sector. Be it either live performance or video media, each choice was carefully curated: Tipperary Dance Platform envisions dance as a global space for social discussion rather than a consumable good. In a social space, which gathers individuals interconnected through their aptitude for sensitive reflection, TDP’s global vision springs from one source: sensitive bodies.

This positioning lays out an open canvass for questions often ignored, sometimes repressed, and locates dance at the heart of numerous conversations that mirror major issues of our time: difference, equality, sensitivity, ability, gender, health, to name a few. Tipperary Dance Platform creates time, space and availability to address essential topics that tend to be overlooked. It acknowledges that our nature, made of flesh, is complex, sensitive, filled with contradictions and an endless source for creation and discussion. It embraces a vision for a future where the experience of embodiment and public space are vital in our ability for critical thinking, social interaction and civic behaviour.

In 2019, the Platform was nominated for the National Age Friendly Ireland Recognition and Achievement Awards for its project ‘Las Muchas’ involving a group of senior citizens, leading to the creation of the screendance film ‘September Days’.


Tipperary Dance Platform and its festival are centred on the people and proud to embrace the legendary Irish traditions of respect and hospitality, that enthuse both audiences and participating artists.




Alexandre Iseli & Jazmin Chiodi, 31 August 2020

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