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Pro Dance News 20th October 2023

All the latest news from Dincwear Pro Dancewear.

Strictly Come Dancing professional Karen Hauer hints of planning a career change after 11 years on BBC show.

Strictly Come Dancing professional Karen Hauer planning career change after 11 years on BBC show.

Strictly Come Dancing professional Karen Hauer has said she is planning a career change.

The star has said that despite being the longest serving pro on the dance show for 11 years, she has got her eye on someone else’s job instead. The 41-year-old fancies her changes becoming a judge on the show, alongside the likes of Anton Du Beke, Shirley Ballas, Motsi Mabuse and Craig Revel-Horwood.

Speaking to the Radio Times, she said: “Right now, I’m really happy with being a professional on Strictly, and to continue spreading that love of dance, As cliched as it sounds, it can change your life, and some people still have no idea.” Karen added: “But also, I’d love to be a judge on Strictly. I love to teach and I love to guide people. I think that’s my calling, my next step.”

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She went on to say that she’d never take her job for granted: “The amount of people that come up to me when I’m out and say how much happiness we bring them… it’s incredible. Doing a job that makes people happy and makes them smile is something I never take for granted, working on this show can be exhausting. But the fact that we get to entertain the nation – that’s where we get the energy.”

Karen first joined the Strictly cast as a professional dancer back in 2012 when she was partnered up with Westlife singer Nicky Byrne. She has danced with a whole host of celebrity partners over the years such as Dave Myers, Mark Wright, Greg Wise, Will Young and Jeremy Vine.
In 2022 she was in a same-sex couple as she danced with comedian Jayde Adams. However, the couple went on to be eliminated in Week five after losing their dance off to CBBC star Molly Rainford and Carlos Gu.


Shirley Ballas applauds Amy Dowden for Strictly return.

Shirley Ballas applauds Amy Dowden for Strictly return.

Strictly Come Dancing judge Shirley Ballas has applauded Amy Dowden for not wearing a wig in her first appearance on the show since starting cancer treatment.

The 33-year-old from Caerphilly said she was doing really well with chemotherapy.

Shirley Ballas said the professional dancer showed courage by appearing with a shaved head.

“She’s just an amazing young lady,” she said.

“I applaud her for not wearing a wig because she wanted to shine light on cancer [for] young people.

“It took courage because she did have her wig there.”

Strictly Pro Dancer Amy Dowden underwent a mastectomy after discovering she had stage three breast cancer in April and has since been speaking her experience of cancer on social media.

She revealed to presenter Claudia Winkleman on this week’s programme she is more than half way through her chemotherapy treatment.


& Juliet to embark on first UK tour with dates confirmed.

& Juliet to embark on first UK tour with dates confirmed,

The acclaimed musical & Juliet is set to hit the road, embarking on a UK tour commencing on 8 July 2024.

After its successful run at London’s West End Shaftesbury Theatre from 2019 to 2023 and its current Broadway residency at the Stephen Sondheim Theatre, the show is gearing up to open at Manchester’s Opera House, before visiting a series of venues listed below. Casting details for the tour will be revealed in due course.

The musical, directed by Luke Sheppard, offers a twist on the classic love story, asking what might have happened if Juliet hadn’t chosen the tragic ending over Romeo. It is set to a pop-infused soundtrack featuring iconic hits penned by Max Martin, like Britney Spears’ “…Baby One More Time” and Katy Perry’s “Roar”.

With a book by David West Read, the production has choreography by Jennifer Weber and set design by Soutra Gilmour. The musical’s tunes are crafted by Martin and his collaborators, while costume design is by Paloma Young, and musical supervision, orchestration, and arrangements by Bill Sherman.

The production also includes lighting design by Howard Hudson, sound design by Gareth Owen, video and projection design by Andrzej Goulding, hair, wig and makeup design by Suzy Barrett, musical direction, additional arrangements and orchestrations by Dominic Fallacaro, and casting direction by Stuart Burt.

The show, which won a wealth of WhatsOnStage and Olivier Awards and picked up a five-star write-up, has already achieved global success, with an upcoming US tour scheduled to begin in September 2024. It made its North American premiere with a pre-Broadway production in Toronto in 2022, followed by a successful run in Melbourne and Singapore. The Australian production is set to return in December, kicking off in Perth before moving on to Sydney in February 2024.

It runs in Manchester from 8 to 20 July, before visiting Blackpool’s Winter Gardens (23 to 27 July), Norwich Theatre Royal (30 July to 3 August), Glasgow Kings Theatre (13 to 24 August), Oxford New Theatre (2 to 7 September), Sunderland Empire (9 to 21 September), Hull New Theatre (23 to 28 September), Plymouth Theatre Royal (30 September to 5 October), Wolverhampton Grand (7 to 12 October), Marlowe Theatre Canterbury (14 to 19 October), Liverpool Empire (28 October to 2 November), Southampton Mayflower (5 to 9 November), Edinburgh Playhouse (12 to 16 November) and Leeds Grand (18 to 30 November).

Into 2025, the show will visit Bristol Hippodrome (14 to 25 January), New Wimbledon Theatre (27 January to 1 February), His Majesty’s Theatre Aberdeen (4 to 8 February), Curve Leicester (17 to 22 February), Woking New Victoria (11 to 15 March), Bradford Alhambra (24 to 29 March), Milton Keynes Theatre (31 March to 12 April), Nottingham Theatre Royal (14 to 19 April), Birmingham Hippodrome (21 April to 3 May), Southend Cliffs Pavilion (5 to 10 May), Stoke Regent (12 tto 17 May), Sheffield Lyceum (20 to 31 May), Newcastle Theatre Royal (2 to 7 June), Truro Hall for Cornwall (10 to 14 June) and Cardiff Millenium Centre (16 to 28 June), with further dates to be confirmed.

Tour stops go on sale from 1 November onwards and the The tour kicks off next summer


Taylor Swift tour film tops $100m in advance ticket sales.

Taylor Swift tour film tops $100m in advance ticket sales

Taylor Swift’s Eras Tour concert film has become a box office blockbuster the week before hitting cinemas.

Its distributor AMC says global advance ticket sales have topped $100m (£82m), adding demand “has been incredible from the moment it was first announced.” The firm says it took less than 24 hours for the movie to beat its record for the highest one-day sales.
That makes it the most profitable concert film in history, overtaking Justin Bieber’s Never Say Never.

The Canadian singer’s movie, which mixed documentary footage with live performance, made $99m (£81m) in 2011.

Travis Kelce says NFL ‘overdoing’ Swift coverage

Swift’s global tour, which is scheduled to continue until late 2024, is also on track to become the biggest in history. Stadium ticket sales could reach $1.4bn which would break the record currently held by Elton John for his farewell tour.

The film of the Eras tour is due to be released in cinemas in more than 100 countries this week. Analysts estimate that in addition to advance ticket sales, the film could see another $100m of box office takings in North America on its opening weekend.

Five films – including Barbie, The Super Mario Bros. Movie and Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse – have generated more than $100m in their North America debut this year.

AMC is also distributing the movie of Beyonce’s Renaissance tour, which is set to be released in December.

Last year, Swift became the first artist in history to have songs in every slot of the top 10 US singles chart.
She overtook Drake, who held the previous record of nine top 10 singles at the same time in September 2021. The Beatles previously held the record in 1964 with eight singles in the top 10.

In August, Spotify said Swift broke another record, becoming the first female artist in the streaming platform’s history to reach 100 million monthly listeners.
The news came after she released her third re-recorded album in July – Speak Now (Taylor’s Version) – which hit the top of the US and UK charts. Later this month, Swift will release her next re-recorded album 1989 (Taylor’s Version). She is re-recording her earlier albums because it will allow her to own the songs’ original recordings.


Line-up for Stiles + Drewe Prize musical concert revealed.

Line-up for Stiles + Drewe Prize musical concert revealed..

Stiles + Drewe and Mercury Musical Developments have announced the lineup for this year’s Stiles + Drewe Best New Song Prize concert, scheduled for Monday 13 November at 7.30 pm, at the Other Palace.

Hosted by WhatsOnStage Award-Winner Rob Madge, the one-night-only gala will showcase emerging musical theatre writing talent through a selection of songs from new shows currently in development. The event will also pay tribute to recent British composing successes, featuring tunes from popular productions such as Operation Mincemeat, The Great British Bake Off Musical, CAKE – The Marie Antoinette Playlist, My Son’s a Queer (But What Can You Do?), and RIDE: A New Musical.

A panel of industry judges, including George Stiles and Anthony Drewe, will determine the winner of the Best New Song Prize, which includes a £1000 prize for further development of the winning work. Additionally, a prize recognizing “Voice, Vision and Potential” will be awarded.

The cast includes Alex Young (Standing at the Sky’s Edge, Into the Woods), Ben Morris (Next to Normal, Waitress), Caroline Sheen (9 to 5, Les Misérables), Claire Moore (Miss Saigon, Follies), Hannah Lowther (Heathers, SIX), Lewis Cornay (The SpongeBob Musical, John & Jen), Lisa Davina Phillip (Ghost the Musical, Matilda the Musical), Renée Lamb (CAKE – The Marie Antoinette Playlist, SIX), Madge (My Son’s a Queer (But What Can You Do?), Bedknobs and Broomsticks), Rumi Sutton (HEX, Mayflies), Sienna Aurora Clarke (Matilda the Musical), William Barker (Standing at the Sky’s Edge, Disney’s Winnie The Pooh) and Zizi Strallen (Mary Poppins, Rock Follies).

The songs in contention for the Best New Song Prize are:

– “Ain’t That So” from T-Room…The Musical by Rosabella Gregory and Dina Gregory,
– “Before I Move On” from Bricks by Michael Henry, Emma Dennis Edwards and Darren Clark,
– “Bio” from Queerway by Geraint Owen,
– “The Botanical Garden Gate” from Game Theory by Rachel Bellman and Josh Bird,
– “Drown Without Water” from The Circle by Rachel Walker Mason and Nina Sundstrom,
– “Height Lines” from The Boy Who Sailed the Ocean in an Armchair by Jordan Li-Smith, based on the novel by Lara Williamson,
– “Henry” from Undertaking Betty by Richy Hughes and Luke Bateman,
– “Stay” from Stay by Jonathan O’Neill and Isaac Savage,
– “Talent” from In Clay by Rebecca Simmonds and Jack Miles,
– “In This Moment” from FLIP by Josh Bird and Giles Fernand,
– “Time Slows Down” from Black Holes Like Donuts by Sam Norman and Eliza Randall, and
– “Unstoppable” from The Unstoppable Letty Pegg by Helen Arney and James Hughes.

The event takes place next month at the Other Palace


General News & Sighting

  • The value to the economy of the music, performing and visual arts sector has increased by just under 18 % on its pre-pandemic levels, according to the Department for Culture, Media and Sport, making it one of the fastest-growing sectors in the UK. (The Stage)
  • Northern Ballet is cutting back on the amount of live music it uses in its touring productions, blaming rising costs across the board.
  • Five “Just Stop Oil” protestors have been arrested after storming the stage at the 14th of October evening performance of “Les Miserables” in the West End.
  • Niquelle LaTouche has been appointed to run Sadlers Wells new Hip-Hop theatre school.
  • Amber Davies will join the upcoming ITV series “Dancing On Ice”.
  • Birmingham Royal Ballet’s Freefall Dance Company has announced details of a week long dance festival at the Birmingham Hippodrome this November to celebrate the company’s 21st Anniversary.
  • The cast for “High Society” at the Mill in Sonning has been announced. It will star Matt Baker, Katio and Victoria Serra. The choreography is by Jaye Elster. The show will open on the 29th of November.
  • A new show  “Now That’s What I Call A Musical”  will have its premiere on the 6th of September 2024 in Aylesbury. It will be directed and choreographed by Craig Revel Horwood and Aaron Renfree. The casting is by Annelie Powell.
  • Casting has been revealed for the new musical “Billie The Kid” starring Jodie Steele. The choreography is by Julian Capolei and Laura Braid. It will be staged on the 13th and 20th of November at the Vaudeville theatre in London.
  • Leeds Playhouse has announced the full company for its upcoming revival of “Oliver”. The choreography is by Lucy Hind and Jo Goodwin. The show will run from the 27th of November until the 23rd of January 2024 in the Quarry Theatre.
  • Full casting has been revealed for the Curve in Leicester’s revival of “Evita”. The show will open on the 27th of November and run until the 13th of January 2024. The choreography is by Adam Murray.
  • “The Wizard of Oz” has set out the initial casting for its UK tour. The show will star Craig Revel Horwood and Gary Wilmot and have choreography by Shay Barclay. It opens in Liverpool on the 13th of December.
  • “Rehab The Musical” will be back in London at the Neon 194 from the 12th of January 2024. The production is directed and choreographed by Gary Lloyd and Alex Codd.
  • “Jersey Boys” will close in the West End on the 4th of January 2024.

            Future Dance Events News

            • “Mean Girls” is coming to the Savoy Theatre in June 2024.
            • A touring musical version of “101 Dalmations” will open in Wimbledon on the 22nd of June 2024.
            • “& Juliet” will embark on a UK tour from the 8th of July 2024. The choreographer is Jennifer Weber.
            • “The Devil Wears Prada” has confirmed its West End run and UK premiere. It will be directed and choreographed by Jerry Mitchell and be cast by Jill Green. The show will open in Plymouth on the 9th of July 2024.
            • “Bonnie and Clyde The Musical” has announced the initial cast and tour dates for 2024. Katie Tonkinson will star as Bonnie Parker.
            • “Starlight Express” is to return to London in the Summer of 2024. It will be choreographed by Ashley Nottingham.
            • The world premiere of the new British musical “Cable Street” is to open at the Southwark Playhouse on the 16th of February 2024. The choreography is by Melody Sinclair.
            • “Some Like It Hot” is coming to the West End in 2025. It will be directed and choreographed by Casey Nicholaw.
            • “Wicked” has announced the full cast for its tour of the UK and Ireland. We spotted Charlotte Coggin, Aine Curran, Jade Davies, Maddison Firth, Shoko Ito and Will Luckett among the cast members. The tour will open on the 7th of December at Edinburgh.
            • Full casting has been revealed for the first UK and Ireland tour of “Aladdin”. Gavin Adams will star with Desmonda Cathabel as Jasmine. Sarah Benbelaid is the Assistant Dance Captain. The show will open in Edinburgh in October.
            • The full cast has been announced for “The Witches” musical at the National Theatre in London. The choreography is by Stephen Mear and Ebony Molina. It will open on the 7th of November.
            • The 2024 Mighty Hoopla Big Weekender has announced its line up led by: Natalie Imbruglia, Cascada and Gabrielle.
            • “Treason The Musical” confirms its initial touring cast. It will star Nicole Raquel Dennis, Joe McFadden and Emilie Louise Israel and open at the Edinburgh Festival theatre on the 25th of October.
            • “An Officer and a Gentleman” is set to embark on a new tour in February 2024 starting in Birmingham. The choreographer is Joanna Goodwin.
            • Leeds Playhouse will stage “Oliver” in the round from the 27th of November until the 27th of January 2024.
            • “Diana the Musical” will open at the Eventim Apollo in Hammersmith, London, on the 4th of December. It will star Kerry Ellis and Maiya Quansah-Breed.
            • “Standing at the Sky’s Edge” will run at the Gillian Lynne theatre from the 8th of February 2024. The choreography is by Lynne Page.
            • “Chitty Chitty Bang Bang” will embark on a UK tour from April 2024, opening in Southampton on the 30th of April 2024. The choreography is by Karen Bruce.
            • “Shucked” will open in the West End in 2024. The choreographer is Sarah O’Gleby.
            • The musical “Bonnie & Clyde” will be heading off on a tour of UK and Ireland in 2024, opening in Manchester on the 19th of March. It is directed and choreographed by Nick Winston.
            • “Come From Away” announced a UK and Ireland tour beginning in Leicester on the 1st of March 2024. The production is being cast by Pippa Ailion and Natalie Gallacher. The choreography is by Tara Wilkinson and Kirsty Malpas with Richard Hinds.
            • “Hadestown” will open at the Lyric Theatre in the West End on the 10th of February 2024. The choreographer is David Neumann.
            • The Chaka Khan musical “I’m Every Woman” announced plans to open in London. It will workshop in the West End in November. The director will be Racky Plews.
            • The new musical “Starter for Ten” will premiere in Bristol next year at the Old Vic theatre from the 29th of February until the 30th of March 2024.
            • “The King And I” will return to the West End in early 2024 starring Helen George and Darren Lee.
            • “Sister Act – The Musical” will return to the Dominion theatre in the West End on the 15th of March 2024. It will star Beverley Knight and Alexandra Burke. The choreography is by Alistair David.
            • The lead cast has been unveiled for “We Will Rock You” opening in the West End. It will star Lee Mead and Brenda Edwards.
            • The upcoming “Wicked” tour has announced its lead casting. Laura Pick will play Elphaba. The show will open in Edinburgh on the 7th of December. The choreography is by Wayne Cilento.
            • “Jesus Christ Superstar” will tour the UK in 2023/4 opening in Manchester this September. The choreography is by Drew McOnie.
            • “The Wizard of Oz” will embark on a UK tour at Liverpool Empire on the 13th of December. The choreography is by Shay Barclay.

              Auditions & Vacancies

              • The Dance Network Association is looking for a Lead dance artist and 2 – 4 Support dance artists for a project in Essex. The deadline to apply is the 27th of October. For more information, contact: info@dancenetworkassociation.org.uk
              • The Jasmine Vardimon Company is auditioning for dancers on the 28th of October at Ashford in Kent. For more information, contact: http://www.jasminevardimon.com
              • Celebrity Cruises has an audition for dancers in London on the 2nd of November. For more details, contact: http://www.celebritycruisesentertainment.com/auditions-live
              • The Gary Clarke Company is auditioning for 3 dancers at the Rambert Studios on the 18th & 19th of November. The deadline to apply is the 6th of November and the audition is by invite only. For more information, contact: http://www.wastelandtour.co.uk
              • Barbara Jackson is offering 2 free weeks of training and rehearsals for a new dance musical on the 23rd – 27th of October and the 12th – 16th of February. To apply, email: barbaraevans504@yahoo.co.uk
              • Adrian Gas is looking for a contemporary girl dancer of African heritage for a performance on the 15th of November. Contact Adrian on: casting@adriangas.com
              • Pearson Casting will be casting the upcoming production of “Starlight Express”. Email your C.V and reels to: starlight@pearsoncasting.com
              • The Place in London is looking for dancers to become Trainee Dance Teachers in their Partners Schools Project. Have a look at the website for details.
              • “Beetlejuice” is looking for dancers in New York. Get more details on: http://www.pearsoncasting.com/beetlejuice
              • Addict Dance Academy is hiring an Acting teacher. For more information, contact: gareth@addictdanceacademy.co.uk
              • Rouge in Las Vegas is looking for male dancers. Contact: castofstrat@gmail.com
              • Birmingham Royal Ballet is looking for a repetiteur. Have a look at the company website for details.

              Dance Classes

              • Dollie Henry will be teaching Jazz dance at the Place in London on the 5th and 19th of November from 4.00 – 5.30 pm.
              • Chris Marney is doing an 8 week Classical Ballet course at Danceworks in London from the 26th of October until the 14th of December from 1.00 – 2.30 pm.
              • Dance Forward has a 1 day Christmas Ballet course at the Royal Ballet Company Studios on the 3rd of December from 9.30 am – 1.30 pm with Darcey Bussell.
              • Lil J is offering a sassy Commercial class at the Pineapple Dance Studios on Tuesdays at 4.15 pm. You can book on the Pineapple app.
              • Amy Ireland is offering a Beginners Tap class at Pineapple Dance Studios on Fridays at 10.15 am and a Commercial Tap class on Mondays at 8.30 pm.
              • Dominique Marinho is teaching a Beginners Heels class on Tuesdays at Pineapple Studios from 3.45 – 4.45 pm from the 1st of August.
              • Jaye Richard Noel is starting a Commercial Hip Hop class from 8.00 – 9.30 pm on Wednesdays at Gymbox in Holborn. You can book via: heelsandfeels.com
              • Natalie Twist has a “Sexy R n B” class every Wednesday from 8.00 – 9.00 pm at the Pineapple Dance Studios.
              • Olivia Rose Shouler is doing a beginners choreography class on Wednesday from 7.00 – 8.25 pm at the Base Studios in London.
              • Anna Maria Barber is doing a Choreography class at Flow Dance in Oval every Tuesday from 7.00 – 8.30 pm.
              • Hannah O’Brian is giving a Heels class on Wednesdays from 7.00 – 8.00 pm in Chelmsford. DM Hannah on her Instagram for details.
              • Gemma Hoddy is giving a class at Base Studios on Thursdays from 5.30 – 6.55 pm.
              • Nicolette Whitley is offering a dance class on Thursdays from 6.15 – 7.15 pm at the Inner Space in Nelwyn for £7. Reserve your space on: nicolettewhitley@outlook.com
              • Anita Mannings has a Contemporary Jazz Class (Int) on Wednesdays from 8.30 – 9.55 pm at the Flow Dance Studios in Oval.
              • Emma Levene is offering a General Ballet Core and Stretch Contemporary class at Forest Gate Community School on Thursdays from 7.00 – 8.00 pm. Email to book: doubletwistdance@gmail.com
              • Michael Naylor is teaching a class on Thursdays at the Base Dance Studios from 2.30 – 4.00 pm. Book via the Base app.
              • Alexandre Novelli is offering a Beginners Commercial for Adults class every Tuesday at her Novelli Studios from 6.00 – 7.00 pm.
              • Lucy Jane Adcock is teaching a Show Tap class at Base Dance Studios on Wednesdays at 11.30 am.
              • Poppy Tremlett is offering an Improvers Choreography class at Base Dance Studios on Tuesdays from 8.30 – 10.00 pm.
              • Rachel Bolsworth is teaching an Absolute Beginners Heels class from 7.00 – 8.00 pm on Tuesdays and an Improvers Beginners Heels class on Monday from 8.30 – 9.30 pm at Pineapple Dance Studios.
              • Hannah Cleeve is giving a Heels Technique class on Wednesdays from 1.00 – 2.30 pm each week at the Base Dance Studios.
              • Kamila Zalewska is teaching at the Base Studios in London on Mondays from 4.00 – 5.25 pm for intermediate/advanced level. Book on the Base app.

              Film & TV

              • Almeida’s “Spring Awakening” will be screened in selected cinemas across the UK on the 1st of November. The choreography is by Lynne Page.
              • We spotted Charlie Goddard, Curtisha Kruythoff & Theo Simpson performing with Mae Muller at the Altitude Magazine Awards.
              • We spotted Arybella Eddy in BBC1’s “Eastenders”.
              • We spotted Kim Collicutt dancing at the Awards Show in Liverpool. The artistic director was David Wood.
              • We spotted the following dancers in the Ann Summers Halloween campaign: Alyx Steele, Aaron Noir, Jo Dyce & Ross Sands. The choreography was by Philip Birchall.

              Pro Dancer News Published by the Dincwear Pro Dancewear Team.

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