Invitation for Swedish Submissions to the Men & Girls Dance Newspaper

In November, UK company Fevered Sleep and Skånes Dansteater will produce a new version of Fevered Sleep’s project Men & Girls Dance. In the performance, five male professional dancers are joined by nine 8-11 year old girls from Malmö. Men & Girls Dance is a celebration of normal, positive relationships between men and girls – relationships that are based on play, trust, care, protection and love.

As part of the project we will publish a special bilingual Malmö edition of the Men & Girls Dance newspaper. The newspaper explores the themes of the project, and will be distributed for free at the theatre and elsewhere.

The newspaper will be edited by David Harradine and Sam Butler, the creators of Men & Girls Dance.

We’re inviting all sorts of people to contribute things written in Swedish to this very special newspaper. You don’t need to be a professional writer, and we’re keen to receive contributions from people who write in different ways. You could write something very short or very long. It might be poetic or political or in everyday language. It can be very simple, or it can be very complex. It might use full sentences and grammar, or it might be a list or just some jottings.

Not everything that’s submitted will be included. Your contributions may be edited. If changes are made to what you’ve written, you’ll have a chance to see and approve the edited version before it’s published.

You can find out more about Men & Girls Dance online at www.menandgirlsdance.com, where you can also see a digital version of the newspaper, if you’d like to have a look at the things other people have written.

 

Please submit your writing to newspaper@feveredsleep.co.uk by 30th August, 2018.

 

If you would like to write something for this very special newspaper, which will be distributed for free alongside the performances at Skånes Dansteater, please respond to one or more of the questions/suggestions below.

 

THINGS THAT ANYONE CAN RESPOND TO (CHOOSE ONE OR MORE):

1. Choose one or more of the themes below, and write something in response:

Trust
Risk / danger / fear
Play / playfulness
Dance – “Why do people dance?”
Skin / touch
Love

2. Suggest up to five words or phrases that describe relationships between men and girls.

3. Are there any things about the relationships between men and girls that are especially significant in the place where you live, or in your circle of friends or your community? For example, is there a male dance teacher running the local dance school? Or a particular member of the community who works with children? Or do you know of a girl who has two dads? – that sort of thing. If you can think of an example of something like this, please tell us about it.

 

THINGS FOR WOMEN TO RESPOND TO (CHOOSE ONE OR MORE):

1. When you were a girl, did you ever find yourself dancing with a man? If you did, please describe it. Describe how it felt to dance with him. If you can, tell us what you think other people might think or have thought about it when they saw you and him dance.

2. Remember a man who you had a special relationship with when you were a girl, for example, your dad, or a friend of the family, or an uncle or grandfather, or a teacher. Write about your physical interaction with him; about dancing or climbing or being carried or being held; or perhaps about games you played. Try to describe it in detail and talk about it in terms of your senses – touch, smell, sound, sight and so on – as well as how it made you feel.

3. Think about a man with whom you had a special relationship when you were a girl, and write 5 separate sentences about your relationship. Each sentence should start with one of these words:  I, he, we, his, my, our.

>At least one of the sentences has to be about how he felt physically, or how it felt to hold him.

>At least one of the sentences has to be about how you moved with him, about the physical relationship, or perhaps about how you danced.

 

THINGS FOR MEN TO RESPOND TO (CHOOSE ONE OR MORE):

1. Can you think of a time when you’ve danced with a girl? If so, please describe it. Describe how it felt physically to dance with her, and also how it felt emotionally. If you can, tell us what you think other people might think or have thought about it when they saw you and her dance.

2. Write something describing a positive relationship between a man and a girl.

3. Write about a girl with who you have a special relationship. Write about your physical interaction with her; about dancing or carrying or being climbed or holding her; or perhaps about games you played. Try to describe it in detail and talk about it in terms of your senses – touch, smell, sound, sight and so on – as well as how it made you feel.

 

THINGS FOR GIRLS TO RESPOND TO (CHOOSE ONE OR MORE):

We’d like you to write about a man who you have a special relationship or friendship with. For example, a friend of the family, or an uncle or grandfather, or a teacher. You can write something very short, or something very long – it’s up to you. You can choose one or more of the things below as your starting point.

1. Tell us what you like doing with him, or what you like seeing him do. You can describe it in facts, or you can write a story. It can be something that happened recently, or today. Or it might be a memory.

2. If you ever move with him in any way, or run with him or climb him or jump on him, tell us about this and how it makes you feel.

3. If you ever dance with him, tell us how you dance together, and how it feels to dance with him, physically and emotionally.

 

There’s no right or wrong approach, and we look forward to receiving whatever you write. Thank you!

 

Please submit your writing to newspaper@feveredsleep.co.uk by 30th August, 2018.

On Art, Children and Schools

For the last fifteen years Fevered Sleep has been exploring the rich seam of creativity that appears where professional artistic practice meets children and childhood – through a series of performance works made for young audiences; projects created in collaboration with children (most recently Men & Girls Dance); research projects like Future Play (which modelled new approaches to making and touring performance for children); and by building peer networks and events that have tried to activate the conversation about art, children, quality and ambition.  It’s been a massive part of our work over this decade and a half, and it’s something we feel deeply passionate about.

At the same time, we’ve witnessed the gradual devaluing and erosion of art and creative subjects in the school curriculum, driven by governments obsessed with measurable test results rather than actual learning, and by a misguided belief that creativity is unproductive, unimportant and unintelligent.  We’ve watched as schools – with increasingly tight budgets – have had to cut back on creative opportunities.  These changes have been painful to witness.

So, against this backdrop, we’re hugely excited to be working in collaboration with Clifton Green Primary School in York on a year-long research project, The Institute of Everything, funded by Wellcome Trust.

Running from September 2018 – July 2019, The Institute of Everything introduces the idea that artists, like children, are in a constant process of questioning the world around them, and wondering how it might be imagined differently.  Focusing on the creative process of critical thinking, we’re moving away from the idea that artists are people who simply make and do things.  We’ll be working with a cohort of brilliant associate artists, who will introduce the whole school community to all sorts of art and creative practices, at the same time as revealing how artists engage deeply with some of the biggest, most challenging questions we face.

We have so much to learn, from the children here at Clifton Green, from the amazing staff team, the visionary leadership, and from the wider community the school serves. 

We’ll be sharing this learning across the year, so keep in touch if you want to find out more. To sign up to our mailing list click here.