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Animated Edition - Spring 2006
From the editor
Ken Bartlett, Creative Director, Foundation for Community Dance
At the beginning of this issue Donald Hutera begins to interrogate the word community and how important it is to individuals and groups within particular contexts, a theme taken up in the recent Foundation for Community Dance Members 'Networking Event held as part of British Dance Edition 2006 in February this year.

Though no conclusions were reached,the question of how useful the word 'community' is in describing the diverse activity we currently embrace at this point in history is key to the future of our professional practice. It is a question that has been raised both within and outside the sector and is taken up by another contributor to this issue Christopher Thomson. Curated by Scilla Dyke, this interview, and that with Linda Jasper, continues our celebration of the achievements of community dance as seen through the eyes of some of the pioneers of the movement. We will be exploring 'community' further in the coming months through dialogue and debate with our members and others.

This issue's focus is on the range of work and structures that local authorities have developed over the years to support dance and participation in dance. Despite the differences in population, geography and social and economic conditions,there are some consistent, clear and positive messages:
  • Concern that the arts should enrich the lives of the people living within local authority boundaries and contribute to education and learning,health and wellbeing,community regeneration and social inclusion
  • The importance of developing partnerships and meaningful relationships not only between dance artists and arts organisations, but with other service providers within the local authority and beyond
  • A concern for the quality of experience and engagement in the arts for the people they represent and in the arts activities they are supporting 'without' as Jan Legge of Norfolk Dance says, 'interfering too much'.
Penny Greenland reflects on the phenomenon that was Strictly Come Dancing and how it might have impacted on our lives as a dance process, and not just a celebrity love-fest,allowing people like Darren Gough to 'fall in love with the challenge and pleasure to be had from engaging with an expressive - rather than sporting - physical task'.

Bisakha Sarker reports on the professional development opportunities provided by Facets 2006 held in Bangalore,India,earlier this year. Rachel Rogers and Karen Gallagher report on Merseyside Dance Initiative's programme to support African Peoples'dance in Liverpool.

And finally. Sanjoy Roy reflects on the work of El Colegio Del Cuerpo in Colombia, marrying the vital social agendas of that country with inspirational works of art.

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Animated: Spring 2006