Wainsgate Dances is an internationally connected artist-led programme of world-class workshops, residencies, performances and other dance events based at the wonderful Wainsgate Chapel in the heart of the rural South Penines in Yorkshire. 

The programme invites people of all ages from the local area to come together with others from across the UK and beyond, in a very special, welcoming and inclusive space for generating and engaging with world class dance activities that can usually only be accessed in urban centres.

At the heart of the programme is an inclusive daily morning dance session – Open Practice – where all are welcome to come and move for 1 hour supported by an eclectic and ever changing playlist of tunes. It runs Monday Friday 9-10am throughout the year. During lockdown it went online and over 4000 individual hours were danced from bedrooms, sitting rooms, hotel rooms, streets, bicycles and many other locations across the globe. We are hoping to expand Open Practice to include even more people and to host it both online and off at the beginning of 2023.

The Wainsgate Dances project began in 2017, and since then has built a unique and wide-ranging programme of high-quality, socially engaged dance.

It has developed an international reputation as a project in which rigour and informality go hand in hand; where the work of artists is both nurtured and challenged; and where participants and audiences are warmly invited to witness and engage with vibrant and stimulating work from diverse artists from all over the world.

Wainsgate Dances is for people of all ages who are curious about encountering, or testing and researching what dance and choreographic performance does or can do; or whatever inspires and invites you to get involved in dance as a participant, maker or observer.

It’s for those who have been dancing all their lives & for those who’ve had little or no experience of it. It’s about engaging and learning by moving, observing, thinking & talking.

It’s for people who live locally to come and meet, watch & move together with dancers and movers from across the UK, Europe and further afield, and for people from further away to engage with dance and the community who live in this very special rural location.

Over the next two years, working with partners locally and nationally, we will work to engage with more people, and to expand and deepen the work that happens in the Wainsgate Dances programme.

Wainsgate Dances is co-organised by Charlie Morrissey and Rob Hopper, and curated in collaboration with local and visiting artists.

If you’d like to know more, take a look around the website and/or get in touch at wainsgatedances@gmail.com