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DCD is playing an important role in the international conversation on the future of transition support for dancers across Europe.


5th April 2018

In March I was invited to speak at the Ministry of Education, Culture and Sport in Madrid, Spain to contribute to an international conference on the future of transition support for Spanish dancers.

This was the third and last seminar of the project “Dance Futures – Creating Transition Schemes for Dancers and Promoting Sustainable Mobility in the Dance Sector”. This project, organised by the International Federation of Actors (FIA) and the International Organisation for the Transition of Professional Dancers (IOTPD) aims to put in motion the establishment of a professional transition scheme for dancers in three countries in Europe – Spain, Belgium and Hungary. The project is funded by the European Union.

Seminars such as this offer a critical opportunity for key stakeholders in the country to come together to discuss practical ways in which long term and sustainable support for dancers can be established.  We heard from Educationalists, Dance Company Directors, Government Ministers and dance artists living and working in Spain. We also heard from dancers who had navigated career transition with little support. There is clearly a strong will from many key players to establish a road map  towards a transition centre for dancers. No more so than César Casares from ConARTE and Danza-T, who is a strong and passionate advocate for all dancers.

During the days after my visit my colleagues were continuing the discussing with a National Conference on this subject. It will take some time, but I have no doubt that significant progress will be made, which will have inestimable impact the lives of dancers in Spain, the cultural sector and wider Spanish society.

I am always privileged to present on the work of Dancers’ Career Development (this time alongside my colleagues from France, Germany and Holland). 45 years ago, DCD was the first Transition Programme for dancers to be set up worldwide and we continue to play an important role in the global conversation. I see sharing our challenges and achievements as a critical part of our work, particularly when it results in new programmes being established.

DCD are able to do this work through the invaluable framework of the International Organisation for the Transition of Professional Dancers (IOTPD) which celebrates it’s 25th Anniversary this year. The IOTPD is the international network of organisations dedicated to offering professional dancers the resources and support they need when facing the end of their performance career. There are now 10 countries with transition programmes worldwide. One of the initiatives set up by the IOTPD is the  Philippe Braunschweig Grant.  This is an education grant for professional dancers who have had an international career and who don’t qualify for support from any one of the countries where they have danced. The next deadline for this grant is 30th April. Take a look here for more details:  http://www.iotpd.org/IOTPD-Philippe-Braunschweig-Grant.