Dance Students Masterclass at Déda

International contemporary dance artist Jorge Crecis recently held his first masterclass with University of Derby BA Hons Dance degree students who are based at regional dance house Déda in Derby to help develop their performance presence skills.

Jorge, supported by funding from Arts Council England, is this year’s Associate Artist with Déda. He is working with professional and young dancers at Déda as well as fellow Derby-based arts organisation QUAD and contemporary dance organisation The Place in London to create an innovative choreography which brings together sport, dance, music and augmented reality technology.

‘Through & Out²’, which will premier in October, will involve performers enduring the physical, mental and emotional states of a marathon runner during the 45-minute piece which is a cross between dance and rope-skipping.

Audiences will experience the performer’s exertion by spectating in the traditional sense but by also accessing statistical information, generated in real time, through a specially created mobile app. This will also include a compelling narrative which gives access to the performer’s memories, emotions and desires.

Jorge is a Sport Sciences graduate and studied contemporary dance at the Royal Conservatory of Madrid. As a professional dancer he has worked with different companies throughout Europe and, as a choreographer, he has been commissioned by companies based in the UK, Europe, Russia, China and USA. He was recently invited to be a Fellow by the University of Derby, and is undertaking a PhD at Goldsmith’s University focusing on how to train performance presence.

Jorge explained: “Performance presence is a crucial element of ‘Through & Out2’. “The demands placed on the performers make skipping twice as hard so it is a mental, physical and emotional challenge for them, which they share with the audience in a unique and engaging way. “I travel the world working on this methodology for performance presence which is based on neurology, cognitive science and anthropology and is the result of 15 years’ research of my own practice and those of others. “Just as we say ‘laugh and the world laughs with you’ - as dancers, our body of our work is ourselves.  “We therefore need to be present and fully committed to the moment – giving ourselves fully in the performance so that the audience can share and appreciate our emotions.“The degree students at Déda were very receptive and committed to the masterclass and I look forward to working with them and other dancer students  here over the coming months in the development of this exciting choreography.”

Déda Head of Dance Development and Learning, Clare Limb, added:  “‘Through & Out²’ is already widely anticipated throughout the international dance world and is an innovative combination of sport, dance, music and digital technology which pushes the boundaries of contemporary dance performance. “I am delighted that Jorge’s involvement with Déda and the University of Derby has enabled dance students based here to be part of this innovative collaboration and to have the chance to learn more about performance presence which will be an important skill for their future careers.”

For more information about the BA Hons Dance Degree in partnership with the University of Derby, please visit

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