For a long time it's all been about cuts, cuts, cuts in the arts and everywhere else. The world is having a fire sale and if the media was to be believed the four horseman of the apocalypse are merely having a coffee and a danish before they do their thing.
The winter of a thousand nights appears, in some places at least, to be over so we thought, here in TheLab™, that it was as good a time as any to reflect on what's good in the wide world of dance because there is still some good stuff left.
We still have a couple of dozen NPO dance companies in the UK and a lot more dance companies all over Europe and the rest of the world doing their thing. You might not like all of it but there they are, making, touring, teaching and sharing.
The UK also has a lot more small-scale touring companies beating the odds, putting together work and putting together a tour or two. We're talking about Bgroup, Watkins Dance, Parlor Dance, Rosie Kay Dance Company, Tom Dale and lots more besides.
For better or worse the National Dance Network is still breathing and they're doing their thing (stop laughing at the back). Yes, they waste lots of money and are becoming more corporate by the hour but there is evidence to suggest they can be taught to change their ways. You just need to know where to kick them.
The day we spent with the students of Northern School of Contemporary Dance revealed a group of young dancers up for the fight and not at all cowed by the current attempts of the powers that be to permanently disable an entire nation. They've made their choices and they will take their chances.
You can see that video tomorrow.
At Least We Can Laugh
Akram Khan is still making promo videos for his work that make us all smile. We smile for the wrong reasons but at least we're smiling. Sadler's Wells is releasing a book that will apparently tell us how awesome Sadler's Wells is! That's got to be funny, right?
Hofesh Schecter goes nuts on Twitter from time to time which is good entertainment value and he's making a new piece this year (finally).
The press staff at ThePlace are still completely adorable as they work through their DVD box set of 'The West Wing' in order to come up with a communications strategy that works. They're just cribbing from the wrong parts of the script is all!
From the wide world of ballet we have endless amounts of entertainment as they continue to do nothing much at all and spend huge amounts of money doing it. They should make a ballet about the current state of ballet, talk about comedy/tragedy.
It's also incredibly funny reading the ballet "journalists" twist themselves into pretzels trying desperately to defend the antics of guys like Sergei Polunin, a guy that just can't be bothered getting out of bed in the morning. He's lazy and stupid, but he can jump really high and at least he gives the hacks something better to do than watch 'Mayerling'....... again!
We firmly believe that everything is cyclical. At the moment, from a financial point of view, things don't look so good. The hacks and the cynical politicians are always saying how "nothing lasts for ever", "the good times are over".
Well, the same goes for the bad times too and the same goes for the hacks and the cynical politicians, they don't last forever either.
Yes, things are bad right now, even crazy at times but it's not going to last. If a group of twenty year old students can put up a fight then we're pretty sure that everybody else in the wide world of dance and beyond can do the same.
So let's all have a good summer (spring is a bust) and let's try to figure out "what's next?"