Hilary Briggs, Company Manager & Daniel E. Roberts, Rehearsal Director

It’s been a brilliant tour

So it’s our final show this evening and this is my last blog entry for the tour. Thank you to everyone involved… it has been a brilliant tour.

Thank you especially to Claire for all your help and expertise. It’s been so nice to get to know you and I am sure we’ll meet again. Steph, we actually never got to meet – somehow we missed one another in Coventry – but thank you for your great hotel and coach bookings… As Adi said to me on the coach the other day, ‘we have lived like Kings’ on this tour. Much appreciated Steph :-). Laura; thanks to you for helping with these blog postings. Thanks to all!

On a more personal level I wanted to say ‘Hi’ and thank you to my family and friends for coming out to see some of the shows. I really appreciated it and it was so nice to see you all. There were family and some very good friends in Oxford and Brighton. Some old friends I had the good fortune to catch up with in Coventry. More of my family in Salford. And in Stirling and Newcastle old friends that I never thought I would see again.

Thank you most of all to the wonderfully warm and responsive audiences we have had here in the UK. It’s been a real treat for us and I hope that Danish Dance Theatre will be back on these stages again one day!

So that’s it… one more show here in Sheffield and we are off back to Denmark.

Bye!!!

Hilary

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Just two more performances

Suddenly it is so close to the end if the tour! Just 2 performances in Sheffield to do before we fly back to Copenhagen.

Newcastle surprised me… it was not only a ‘party town’, but also a town with some beautiful buildings and a great waterfront along the river Tyne. I thought it was wonderful to see the many different Bridges crossing the water and how the Tyne Bridge merged in with the surrounding buildings so it seemed that the houses just managed to fit in under its arches.

Our performances went well at The Northern Stage and the team there were excellent, so thank you to them.

Thanks also to Sune, our technician, for cooking a meal for Daniel, Kim, David, Mathias and myself last night. Also thanks to Kim for the appetizer. My wish came true and somebody else did cook for me!! J We started with mozzarella and tomato salad and then had a tasty pasta dish with chicken and bacon in a cream sauce. Not bad!

We did experience a little bit of the night life of Newcastle…then I realized that I was way too overdressed…. So I went home to bed… This was definitely not a case of: ‘if you can’t beat them, join them’!!!!!

I met up with friend who I hadn’t seen in 11 years! Thanks for making the trip Rupert, really good to see you. And glad you enjoyed the show.

Now that we have been on tour for 5 weeks I thought it would be nice to hear what a couple of the dancers had thought about being here in the UK. I guess I am curious to know what it has been like for them to see all these places for the first time and, as foreigners, what their take on the Brits has been.

I asked Adi and Bjørn, while we were on the coach travelling to Sheffield, if they thought it had been a good tour so far. They both agreed that it’d been a very good tour, interesting to see a lot of different places and really have a chance to experience the UK and the culture. Bjørn has lived in London while doing his dance training so for him London is made up of many different countries and now, he said, he has had a chance to see the rest of the country in all its glory! He said that each new place had had a different energy to the last, which had been fun and interesting to experience. For Adi it is the first time over here and she told me that she really liked it J

‘The audiences have been warm and responsive and we felt appreciated as a group’, Bjørn told me. Adi said that the tour has been good for the group and that she felt they were really well connected now, which feels good. That was nice to hear J

After such a long time on the road, were they looking forward to going home; back to Copenhagen? Swedish Bjørn, who is a fan of the city, is looking forward to it because he feels it will be good for both body and mind to be back in one place again. He also misses to prepare and cook his own food, as he says ‘English food is not the best’! That’s a bit cheeky Bjørn!! Adi is still new to Denmark and Copenhagen, so because it is not yet home for her so she couldn’t really say if she was looking forward to it… but Israel, she said, she would always look forward to going home to!

As to a favourite place and theatre, it seems that town of Brighton and The Grand Opera House in Belfast were the top two on the list.

Bjørn told me that his favourite part of the tour so far had been when we all went out as a group in Stirling to the local nightclub and where we were all ‘shaking those hips’. Also to experience the Scottish wedding party that was also there was quite a treat! I have also been hearing them all saying that Edinburgh was a beautiful city and how they are all hoping that we get to come back on tour there! Bjørn added that he thought it was one of the prettiest cities in Europe, with interesting architecture in the differences between old and new, and with a great vibe to the city.

Now we are in Sheffield and we start with a day off. So that includes me, as it is Daniel’s turn to wash the costumes!

Bye for now

Hilary

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Welcome Cake

DDT had made their way up north to Newcastle, where we had a great professional level workshop taught by Alessandro and Milou at dance city. The mild temperature has been a great welcome to the city, and we look forward to our premiere tonight. Northern stage even made us a welcome cake with Alessandro’s picture on it!

Welcome cake

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Newcastle and Nottingham

Newcastle is our next port of call and we have arrived to blue skies and the sun shining. Not bad!

This time we are not staying in a hotel but in apartments. It’s great to have a kitchen again and it’s especially welcome at this point on the trip. Still hoping though, that someone else will do the cooking for me! It’s easy to get lazy about food when on tour.

I have been washing the costumes at the theatre this afternoon while Daniel went with Alessandro and Milou to do a workshop at Dance City. And Daniel has just told me it went well :-) The folks working at the The Northern Stage theatre have been very friendly and helpful to me today and we all have a little ‘meet and greet’ with them tomorrow.

We travelled from Nottingham this morning. Our second show there had a lot of young people in the audience, which was very nice. They usually give a slightly more ‘upbeat’ feel to the applause!!! 😉

Dinner time for me now.
Hope to see you Friday or Saturday for our performances.
Hilary

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Stirling and meeting old friends

Well that was a long travel day! We left Stirling at 11.15am and arrived at our hotel in Nottingham at about 6.15pm. But despite how long it took I found myself, while sitting on the coach listening to music, enjoying looking at the British countryside once again. It has been many years since I have had the chance to travel through England and even longer since I have seen Scotland in this way. It was beautiful and I am inspired to spend more time in the countryside, perhaps to return for a holiday in the near future?

Anyway enough about that…

Our shows in Stirling were good. The audience seemed to have enjoyed them. And I even bumped into someone I was friends with at The Royal Ballet school – She said it had been 18 years since we had last seen one another! I was very surprised to see someone I know in Stirling- I never realised I knew anybody up there!!!

We also had some of the dancers from the Rambert Dance Company come to watch the second show. They had been performing in Edinburgh and we had been over to see their show a couple of nights before. One of the pieces which Rambert performed was a creation by Tim so he invited us all over to watch. Thanks Tim! We had a very nice time looking around Edinburgh, a beautiful city, and it was an inspiration to see the excellent dancers perform. Thanks to them for making the trip over to see us on their free day :-) And it was obviously my week for seeing people I had hadn’t seen in ages because I also had a chance to see and talk (and we did a lot of that in the short time allowed!) with another friend who is one of the rehearsal leaders for Rambert. We haven’t seen one another in about 7 years. It was great to meet up again:-)

After the second show, we organised for all of us to eat at an Italian restaurant, La Cucina, in Bridge of Allan, just opposite our hotel. It turned into a very fun night with one of the Italian waiters showing us the night life of Bridge of Allan, starting with the listening to a singer at the local pub and then moving onto the local discotheque. Lots of men in kilts!… there was a wedding party also dancing the night away.

Now we will be performing at The Nottingham Playhouse on Tuesday and Wednesday. Come and see our show :-)

Bye for now
Hilary

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Belfast

DDT enjoyed a very warm welcome in Belfast (and capped off with a yummy Indian meal). The Opera house was a special treat for the tour, and we will be sad to leave the hospitality (and now sunny weather) of Northern Ireland. But Scotland, here we’re headed your way…..

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Belfast – fantastic!

Although Daniel is lagging behind me in the blog writing I have decided to be cheeky and write again while he is out! Sorry Daniel… we can laugh about it on the coach later!

After the show this evening we all met up at the hotel to go out on the town. We have a late check out of the hotel later today…  😉 But it wasn’t until we had walked a fair way when some of us realized that we weren’t heading for a place to eat, but a gay bar. Some of us were starving so we decided to split into 2 groups so that we could find some food. Milou took initiative, after our first try was unsuccessful, and asked a waitress who was cleaning up after her days work about a place to eat. She recommended a Chinese place which is open til 3am! Great… we would be able to eat something. When we were done eating we tried to get hold of the others. No answer, obviously too loud in the bar! But our cab driver was great and drove us to a gay club that was open til 3am as he was sure that we would find the rest of the gang there. Sure enough just as we were arriving Daniel calls me to say that they are on their way to the very same place we are heading to. Nice timing! Thanks Mr. taxi driver :-)

Now it’s 1.30am and I am back after trying to have a boogie at the club, amid the many people – quite surprising for a Tuesday night I thought. But perhaps it’s not so surprising and that’s just me showing my age! I came back to the hotel together with Adi and Milou – we left the others to make a night of it.

But back to our day at The Grand Opera House in Belfast: Fantastic! Thank to you everyone working there: you were all so professional, helpful and welcoming.  And thank you to a wonderful audience. It really was a great experience… And what a beautiful building. The dancers were excited to be performing in such a place. Erik joined the Kridt cast in the show, which means that Luca gets a break from his role. For the rest of the tour it is Alessandro who moves into the role of the ‘dying man’.

We also had the musician Mathias Friis-Hansen back together with us after 2 weeks away. There are 3 musicians involved in the tour, but only 2 needed for the piece ‘Cadance’ at a time. I asked Mathias what he had been doing in the weeks he had not been with us and he told me that he had been sick! It has been going around. Most of the dancers have also been suffering with fevers during this tour. I am hoping that we have seen the end of it now. Welcome back to Mathias F-H and we say thank you and goodbye to Mathias Reumert. Mathias R played his last show with us last night. From now on David Hildebrandt will be back with us. It was fun to have you on board Mathias… say Hi to Copenhagen!

Ok, now we are getting ready to fly to Scotland. Stirling here we come! Hope to see you there.

Hilary

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Brighton, Salford, Copenhagen and Belfast

Brighton was great and our audiences were brilliant. We also had a very good Post Show Discussion, which Tim was part of.

After our second show we were invited for some food and drinks by Tim at a friend’s flat. Thank you! It was a very nice evening :-)

We had a long travel day after that up to Salford, which is where we are now. I have never been to Salford or The Lowry before and I was excited to come here. The theatre is really nice. We are performing at The Quays Theatre inside The Lowry. It is an ingenious theatre, which one of the technicians told me is built from the top down and can change to be made almost any way you would want. It can be lowered or raised, the stage and the seats can be moved so that performances can also be shown in the round. And many more possibilities. Very cool!

Last night was our first show, which I think went very well. Our Post Show Discussion was also very good and it seemed that the people who stayed were very satisfied with the show.

We are flying back to Copenhagen tomorrow (very early!!!) for the weekend before we are in Belfast performing on Tuesday. We also have a workshop on Monday evening at The Baby Grand in the Opera House in Belfast.

Bye!
Hilary

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Poole and Brighton

We had a really good experience in Poole at the Lighthouse Theatre. The audience gave a good response to the shows.

Two of the dancers went out to Bournemouth & Poole College, on the second day, to give a workshop for the dance students there. It was a great experience for all and the students worked hard and seemed to enjoy themselves. Some of the students had been at the show the night before and the others were coming to it that night. They had some good questions for the dancers.

Now we are in Brighton and tonight we have our first show here. We are at the Corn Exchange, part of the the Brighton Dome which is a fantastic building.

I must go now but I hope we will see some of you here tonight…
Hilary

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Warwick Arts Centre

We are now onto our shows at Warwick Arts Centre. And our first show here last night was well received…. thank you everybody for coming out to watch!

Today we are giving workshops for two different schools, which I am sure will be fun for the DDT dancers and hopefully also fun for their students!

Looking forward to our second show tonight and hope to see you there!

Hilary

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