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New Artistic Director Announced For National Dance Company Wales

New Artistic Director Announced For National Dance Company WalesNational Dance Company Wales (NDCWales) have today announced the appointment of their new Artistic Director, Fearghus Ó Conchúir.

Fearghus will take up his new position on in the autumn (2018) joining Chief Executive, Paul Kaynes at the helm of Wales' leading dance organisation to continue developing dance in all kinds of settings with all kinds of people, across all the company's work, locally, nationally and internationally.

Commenting on his new role, Fearghus Ó Conchúir said "It's an honour to take on this role as Artistic Director of NDCWales. What excites me about the company is how we use dance to express an inclusive and robust vision of what Wales is and can be in the future. I'm joining a company that's up for bringing its work from the stage and the studio to all kinds of other platforms - from nightclubs to social clubs, from schools to care homes, online and up close. I want to support the company to learn from all kinds of people and places across Wales and to make connections between them and the international dance network in which NDCWales already represents Welsh talent and potential."

With over 20 years experience as a choreographer, performer, teacher and mentor, Fearghus has most recently worked as Artistic Director of The Casement Project, one of Arts Council of Ireland's largest projects for the centenary commemorations of the 1916 Easter Rising. It engaged 90,000 people in a varied programme of dance events and was also one of the 14-18 NOW co-commissions for the centenary of the First World War.

Born and raised in Ireland, Fearghus has presented his choreography in the UK, across Europe, the USA and China, collaborating with award-winning performers, directors, composers and designers. He has also worked as a dance teacher for companies such as Adventures in Motion Pictures, Arc Dance, Company and Ballet Preljocaj, as well as being a lecturer on professional training courses at LCDS, Middlesex University and London Studio Centre. He has gained a wealth of artistic experience and an international network of creative collaborators and partners in and beyond dance. He holds a strong focus on diversity and has developed dance projects within the LGBT and refugee communities, with dance enthusiasts over 50, and with Irish integrated dance company, Croí Glan.

In addition to being a Fellow of the Clore Leadership Programme, Fearghus has gained a wealth of experience as a facilitator, coach, and contributor to the Clore Leadership Programme, having been part of the delivery of its Fellowship, Intensive and Emerging Leaders' Courses for over ten years.. He has also worked with Clore to deliver the Advanced Cultural Leadership Programme in Hong Kong.

National Dance Company Wales Chair Jane McCloskey said "My fellow board members and I are delighted that Fearghus is joining the company at such an important time in its evolution. He brings a wonderful track record as an innovator and leader in contemporary dance both in the UK and internationally and will help us to fully embody our place as the National Dance Company for Wales."

Paul Kaynes, Chief Executive of NDCWales added "The whole Company is enormously excited by Fearghus' appointment. His track record of international leadership, his evident interest in the culture of Wales and how we help embody and add to it, and his commitment to diversifying the people of the arts make this an appointment which will help us achieve our ambitious plans for Wales and for dance."

Nick Capaldi, Chief Executive of Arts Council of Wales said, "We are delighted that NDCWales has been able to attract an Artistic Director of the calibre ofFearghus Ó Conchúir. This is an exciting appointment and brings to the company someone whose vision and energy will drive forward the next chapter in NDCWales' creative endeavours. We look forward to welcoming him to Wales."

Fearghus will take up the role of Artistic Director previously held by Caroline Finn, who remains with the company and was appointed Resident Chorepgrahper in December last year.

ENDS For further information, images and interview requests please contact Nia Llewelyn Jones PR / / 0797 451 9360Biographies Fearghus Ó Conchúir

Brought up in the Irish-speaking area of Ring, Fearghus completed degrees in English and European Literature at Magdalen College Oxford, before training at London Contemporary Dance School.

As a performer he danced with Arc Dance Company, Adventures in Motion Pictures and Nigel Charnock and he has taught dance to all kinds of people from the professionals of Ballet Preljocaj to the participants of MicroRainbow's workshops of LGBTI refugees and asylum seekers.

As a choreographer, he has collaborated with artists and experts from other disciplines to make film and live performances that have been seen across Europe, in the US, Australia, Hong Kong and China. He has been commissioned to make work for companies such as Croí Glan Integrated Dance Company and Maiden Voyage.

His latest work, The Casement Project was part of ART:2016, the Arts Council of Ireland's programme for Ireland 2016 and of the Culture Ireland International Programme. It was also co-commissioned by 1418NOW as part of the UK's centenary commemorations of the First World War.

The project combined work on stage, a dance film for television, a day of dance on a beach, academic symposia in universities and at the British Library, a club night and multiple workshops.

He has been Curator of the Artistic Programme at Firkin Crane in Cork, Trustee of the BBC Performing Arts Fund and a board member of Dance Ireland, Dance Digital, Project Arts Centre and Create. He was the first Ireland Fellow on the Clore Leadership Programme and he continues to contribute to the programme's work, in the UK and internationally, as a facilitator, coach and speaker.

Fearghus is a Project Artist, a member of Project Arts Centre's associate artist scheme and has recently completed a PhD as an Irish Research Council Scholar at Maynooth University's Dept. of Geography. /

National Dance Company Wales | | @ndcwales
National Dance Company Wales is an award-winning company presenting work by some of the most celebrated international choreographers alongside creations by exciting new Wales-based talent.NDCWales is committed to working with young people, many of whom will be experiencing contemporary dance for the first time, to develop dance appreciation by watching, participating in and talking about dance. NDCWales presents opportunities for the public to experience contemporary dance in different ways. Through participation in various engagement activities on tour, such as workshops or interactive performances, audience members experience an introduction to the art form in a relaxed and open environment. NDCWales has toured widely across the UK and internationally, most recently the company has toured to Hong Kong, Hungary, Germany and Austria with Caroline Finn's Folk, The Green House; Marcus Morau's Tundra and Lee Johnston's They Seek to Find the Happiness They Seem. NDCWales have also performed at Green Man Festival (Wales); Edinburgh Fringe Festival and Tanzmesse Festival in Dusseldorf. the company have further international touring plans over the next year which include Germany, Switzerland, Austria, Poland and further afield. Founded in 1983 as Diversions, the company took up residency in 2004 at the Dance House, Wales Millennium Centre. The Dance House is regarded as one of the best dance production and rehearsal facilities in Europe and is the home and dance hub for professional development and nurturing dance talent in Wales. National Dance Company Wales is registered as a Limited Company in England & Wales No. 1672419 and registered as a Charity in England & Wales No. 326227. National Dance Company Wales receives support from Arts Council of Wales and Welsh Government.

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