Artists Interviews

Each month we feature an in-depth exploration into a current project in order to share learning and provide insight into approaches to practice.

November 2011: Ríonach Ní Néill




October / November Guest Editor Ríonach Ní Néill has spoken to dance artist Wilkie Branson after his performances at the Baboró International Arts Festival for Children, Galway about his dance, his use of B-boying and what it is like to be a self-taught dance artist working in Ireland.


Ríonach has prepared the following blurb:

Wilkie Branson is a young choreographer of Champloo Dance Company. Having previously choreographed a B-boy christmas piece for Travelling Light Theatre Company and Bristol Old Vic, with White Caps, his first full length work for theatre, he is quickly establishing an international reputation.

At the core of his work is B-boying and film. As a self-taught artist his pathway into choreography for theatre has been unconventional. We discuss his multi-media development through breaking and film, the supports available and also strictures. He has expanded the context for breaking, which is conventionally known as a raw, sometimes confrontational urban, street dance form, and, in striking scenes in White Caps, the dance literally fuses with the natural landscape, flowing over and through landforms.


A theme in his work is not accepting any given limit, of how something should be done or could be done – to the point literally, as we hear, of moving mountains.


Wilkie Branson discusses his audience at Baboró International Arts Festival for Children and about breaking conventions within theatre.
Wilkie speaks about being a multi-media artist, and the many roles that he takes on during a project.
Wilkie speaks about when he began dancing, and why he began choreographing, how Champloo was established and how film influenced the group.
Ríonach Ní Néill discusses the theme of the relationship between urban and rural in Wilkie Branson’s work.
Ríonach asks how people connect with Wilkie’s work.
Wilkie talks about the commission for the project and how it was all funded, and how it was supported.
Ríonach asks about how Wilkie feels about the idea of influencing future dancers.

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