The members of Janice Parker’s traveller dance are adults with learning disabilities and Alan Grieg’s X-Factor team is one of Scotland’s top professional companies. The linking up affirmed what makes dance such a vital, pleasing art form – Grieg’s choreography fashioned without condescension or compromise sees the travellers dancing onwards and upwards – they are persons of unknown talents and Parker’s bid to unlock these talents deserves encouragement and backing.
★★★★ The Herald, Mary Brennan
…when two middle-aged ladies start dancing in Jenners shop window, you know that a frontier has been breached. The department store is a Princes Street institution, synonymous with traditional Scottish values. But for one week only, Sheila Macdougall and Janice Parker have been creeping around the displays climbing in and out of Jenners’ bags and manhandling the stores goods. “This is a bit different than what you would expect from Jenners,” says Eslyn from Glasgow, a regular customer, “and its all the better for it. I love itThe Guardian – Leo Benedictus
Janice Parker founder of integrated company traveller dance explained how she first floated the scheme to Brian McMaster and his associates at the Edinburgh International Festival – She approached the Festival’s director Brian McMaster and suggested his organisation might like to run a dance residency for experienced performers with learning disabilities – The proof of McMaster’s good intentions came when Parker found herself in Barcelona outlining possibilities to international choreographers Cesc Gelabert and Lydia Azzopardi – watching them at work and later seeing the end results – it was the depth and intensity of the movement and the degree of individuality that shone through – Mary Brennan
…more than ever before the choreography, devised through group improvisation then shaped and directed by Janice Parker, reflected the individuality and personality of the dancers themselves. The result was a complex mosaic of immensely watch able, expressive dance.
The Herald, Mary Brennan