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Animated Edition - Spring 2003
From the editor
Ken Bartlett, Director, Foundation for Community Dance
This second issue of Animated focusing on continuing professional development (CPD) amply illustrates what the dance sector is doing for itself in providing professional development opportunities. Dance is a profession that is talent, imagination and energy rich but cash poor; yet across the country, companies, agencies and individuals are entering into creative, powerful and productive partnerships with each individual satisfaction and a wider range of opportunities for the profession.

Our focus on CPD in this and in the Winter 2003 issue of Animated has revealed a rich and varied seam of professional development work happening right across the UK. It is extremely encouraging to see what we in dance are finding the resources to do it for ourselves rather than waiting for it to be done to us. This issue shows a largely optimistic picture of what is being achieved in local and regional contexts to support individuals and groups of professionals within dance that is entirely relevant to need and circumstance.

Articles by Dawn Prentice about CandoCo and Gwen van Spijk about Birmingham Royal Ballet demonstrate how companies are putting in place opportunities that feed and extend their dancers and enrich their work as companies.

From the North East to the South West support by agencies such as Dance City, Hampshire Dance and the County Agencies in the South West demonstrate the importance of listening to professionals in dance and providing a raft of different opportunities that reflect the various needs of artists, participants, audiences and the art form.

Alysoun Tomkins in her article, Returning to Learning, outlines the international context for lifelong learning, but more importantly articulates the personal benefits of giving oneself the chance. Charlotte Vincent gives her take on what it takes to be a choreographer, whilst Eddie Nixon and Francesca Rendle Short outline different approaches
taken in London and Canberra, Australia, in support of choreographers.

Jacqueline Rose reports on recent research into the needs of dance managers and Deborah Baddoo gives a personal view about the predicament of black dance managers. Both argue for a national approach to the support of dance managers across the country.

In the search to find funds to do our work and reach out to audiences for that work, it may seem that investing in professional development is not a priority. But, it appears that most of us are participating in a framework of opportunities that link us to the learning we need in ways that best serve us. As a result we have a dance profession that is becoming extremely articulate in specifying its varied needs, creating imaginative solutions to those needs and is taking every opportunity to benefit from the investment that is there.

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Animated: Spring 2003