2014 – the 1st year of Mill Street Studios

2014

The end of 2014 saw the last of some massive endeavours with the recital for the Mill Street Studios School of Dance. It had been a massive year with 2 shows, a film, opening Mill Street Studios (as a space and renovating it), and diving into running a school there over the course of the year.

1. With help of friends and family, I’ve renovated Mill St over December through to January. More here: http://www.clairemarshall.com.au/introducing-mill-street-studios/

2. Opened the space with a fancy launch on the 24th of January. More here: http://www.clairemarshall.com.au/mill-street-studios-launch/

3. Remounted SlowDive for APAM in February at the Brisbane Powerhouse. http://www.clairemarshall.com.au/slowdive-at-apam-in-february-2014/

4. Created a new work called Flaunt with the help of Metro Arts at the Brisbane Powerhouse over October and November. http://www.clairemarshall.com.au/flaunt-v1-2014/

5. Finished Ward of State (including doing the sound design) and organised the premiere for Ward of State in December. http://www.clairemarshall.com.au/ward-of-state-post-production-to-premiere/

6. Opened a dance school (Dance4300) based at Mill Street Studios with ten dance teachers across different disciplines, and other staff and helpers to run the school. The students do all the usual performances throughout the year (eg, exams andshowings), and I also spent time choreographing some new pieces on the students. To finish the year off, the Mill Street Studios teachers and I staged a recital for Mill Street Studios in late December. Read more below:

 

The first year of Mill Street Studios (2014).

Dance is my passion. Creating dance makes me feel happy and creatively fullfilled. It’s challenging to make work in contemporary dance: as I say “a moving piece of art that people read and interpret”.
Running a dance space/ studio and a school is a business, but with passion!

As mentioned in an earlier blog post, to open Mill Street Studios was a case of being at the right place at the right time, and having a light bulb moment idea.

Mill Street Studios aims to connect dance with the local community, as well as the dance community in all it’s different stages – students, youth, and professional artists.

I’ve observed that the dance school world can be disconnected from what’s going on in the professional world and vice-versa. At Mill Street, I try to have these sectors cross paths in a common dance space whenever I can.

For example, the SlowDive rehearsals at Mill Street Studios were viewed by some of the older dance school students, which was a fantastic experience for them. The other benefit was that the professional dancers in town for SlowDive rehearsals taught various guest classes for the students. That was a win-win situation being additional income for the dancers, as well as a great learning experience for students.

Having a dance school reside at Mill Street Studios isn’t just to have my own space, or to generate income to support my independent works. The school is actually something that I will continue to re-invest in. Specifically, I am investing in the students by providing high quality tuition, bringing in experienced teachers, and nurturing young dancers based on my values and industry experience.

Mill Street Studios supports the dance ecology by providing a space that is can be hired by various groups, and a subsidised space for other dance makers like myself. Space is limited in Brisbane, and Mill Street Studios is only 25 minutes from the Brisbane CBD.

Goodna was severely affected by the 2011 floods. I think people are excited that something new is happening in their area, and that they don’t need to travel to Brisbane or Ipswich.An exciting little dance hub is right on their door step!

In 2014 Mill Street Studios opened with 42 students and slowly began to build over the year. The first year was hard in many regards, but there was some loyal students who trusted my vision. The first year of Mill Street Studios culminated in the end of year recital for the students. I’ve shared a few photos here.

  For more about Mill Street studios, go to: www.millstreetstudios.com.au

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