Central is pleased to announce that, together with Associate Artist Fevered Sleep, it has been shortlisted for a Times Higher Education Award (THE) for Research Project of the Year: Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences.
The THE Awards are widely recognised as the Oscars of the higher education sector. Each year they attract hundreds of entries that exemplify the talent, dedication and innovation of individuals and teams across all aspects of university life and showing countless reasons why our institutions continue to prosper. The Research Project of the Year: Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences Award recognises the individual or team at a UK higher education institution for innovative arts, humanities or social sciences research that has a far-reaching impact and has caught, or has the potential to catch, the imagination of the public. Entries were open to teams and all higher education institutions in the UK.
Central’s entry was in recognition Men & Girls Dance, produced by Associate Artist Fevered Sleep and Professor David Harradine – Fevered Sleep’s co-founder and co-Artistic Director, and Professor of Interdisciplinary Practice at Central. Men & Girls Dance brought together two very different groups of performers: adult, male professional dancers, and eight to eleven year-old girls who dance for fun.
Conceived as a response to the dominant media and social discourses around intergenerational relationships, in which men’s relationships with children are depicted as overwhelmingly negative, Men & Girls Dance reclaimed the rights of adults and children to be together, to play together and to dance together. At times playful, at times provocative, emotionally charged and deeply political, it is a celebration of tenderness, empathy, care, protection and love.
At the heart of Men & Girls Dance was a semi-choreographed, semi-improvised performance, which was recreated in each place the project was presented with a company of nine local girls aged eight to eleven joining five male professional dancers to recreate and perform the work.
Alongside performances, a programme of conversations, meetings, post-show discussions and social media activity, collectively called The Talking Place, created opportunities for people in the places where performances happened to come together and talk about the themes of the project.
THE editor John Gill said:
"Once again these awards have attracted hundreds of entries from the length and breadth of the nation, and from institutions of every hue. All those shortlisted can be immensely proud to have made it through this first phase, and we at Times Higher Education look forward to honouring the winners for their talent, creativity and commitment at a time for the academy when these qualities are increasingly essential."
Winners will be revealed at a gala awards evening in Central London on Thursday 30 November 2017.