Sadler’s Wells, the dance venue in North London, has posted record audiences figures for its 2009 to 2010 financial year.
The craze for dance in the UK, fuelled by shows such as Strictly Come Dancing, has boosted audiences at Sadler’s Wells, with dance now ranking second to football as the nation’s favourite activity.
Over 600,000 people visited Sadler’s Wells last year, seeing 136 productions at the popular dance venue, and bringing in £19.8 million of revenue. In line with Arts Council cuts, it was also announced that Sadler’s Wells’ annual subsidy for the next financial year will be cut by 6.9%.
The chairman of Sadler’s Wells, David Bell, said: “We have no illusions about the challenges ahead as the government makes cuts in every area including, of course, the arts. But our finances are strong, our support is excellent and our team superb, which gives us huge confidence for the future.”
Sadler’s Wells also revealed their forthcoming programme for 2010/2011, featuring a wide and eclectic mix of productions including:
- Controversial choreographer Dave St Pierre’s 2007 show, Un Peu de Tendresse Bordel de Merde, which features 20 nude male and female dancers. The show will debut in June and is described as “leading the audience on a journey through their emotions as the performers leap with primal urgency, or lie crumpled and defeated on the ground, before climaxing in a moving finale”. Dave St Pierre, who is a self-styled “enfant terrible” of the dance world, will be bringing his work to the UK for the first time, and guarantees the Wells plenty of press coverage. Some of St Pierre’s previous work includes La Pornographie des âmes, which included scenes of masturbation.
- In March Bartabas, the famous French horse trainer, impresario and film producer, will make his British debut by bringing his new show The Centaur and The Animal to Sadler’s Wells, featuring dancers on live horses. The show will be co-choreographed by Japanese butoh master Ko Murobushi.
- Also in March The Pet Shop Boys will team up with Venezuelan dancer and choreographer Javier de Frutos for a new dance piece based on the Hans Christian Andersen story, The Most Incredible Thing. The show will star former Royal Ballet principal and dance poster boy Ivan Putrov along with a cast of 15. Neil Tennant of the Pet Shop Boys said, “we wanted to do something unfashionable, like a Tchaikovsky ballet, but with pop music”. Ivan Putrov also commented that “I am so excited that my friendship with Neil and Chris has led to the development of The Most Incredible Thing. I am happy to be working with this great team and very much looking forward to the new creation.”
- Other highlights include Anne Teresa De Keersmaker and her Rosas company; transvestite ballet with les ballet C de la B; Rosalba Torres Guerrero; Dutch National Ballet; Sol Pico and American Ballet Theatre; Balletboyz; and the return of Stephen Mear’s Shoes and breakdance festival Breakin’ Convention.
Coming up at Sadler’s Wells this Christmas is the return of Matthew Bourne’s Cinderella, whilst at Sadler’s Wells’ West End venue – the Peacock Theatre – seasonal favourite The Snowman comes back to London.