Founded in 1981 by three black British men from Harehills, Leeds, Phoenix Dance Theatre is one of the UK’s leading contemporary dance companies.
Over nearly four decades the company has grown to be internationally respected for their artistic programmes which encapsulate the diverse spirit of multicultural Britain. Each year the Company embarks on national tours presenting critically acclaimed dance productions to audiences throughout the UK and further – reaching up to 20,000 people and engaging with up to 6,500 people through the Company’s extensive education provision.
Phoenix Dance Theatre is the longest-standing contemporary dance company outside London and one of few mid-scale contemporary dance companies to employ a permanent company of professional dancers. Under the Company’s current and longest-standing Artistic Director Sharon Watson, Phoenix Dance Theatre’s aim is to create dynamic, diverse and relevant work that embodies the Company’s rich Caribbean history and shines a light on cultural narratives which are often overlooked or untold.
Rooted in Nadine Senior OBE’s principles of providing the highest quality, accessible dance provisions, the Company’s Access & Education department is celebrated for inspiring and empowering people through the medium of contemporary dance. They are committed to providing opportunities for all through provisions which range from regular weekly classes as part of their Saturday School and Illuminate Dance programmes, prevocational training in the Youth Academies based in Leeds, Gateshead and York – to bespoke schools’ packages working on Cross-Curricular or performance led projects.
Phoenix Dance Theatre’s presence both on and off the stage continues to develop and establish diverse new audiences for contemporary dance.