Candoco announces new commission from international choreographer Yasmeen Godder


Multi-award-winning choreographer Yasmeen Godder will premiere her new work Face In this Autumn, commissioned by Candoco Dance Company and performed by their company of disabled and non-disabled dancers. Face In is the final commission from Stine Nilsen and Pedro Machado before they step down as Artistic Co-Directors of Candoco, as announced in January.

Candoco Dance Company Face In

Candoco Dance Company Face In by Yasmeen Godder Photograph: Hugo Glendinning (2017)

Yasmeen Godder, the recipient of the Michael Landau Prize and “Bessie” award-winner, creates a wild fictional world, uncomfortably familiar yet strangely distorted. Expressed through striking images interwoven with daring and uninhibited dance work, Face In is set to an urban indie score, and follows Godder’s most recent work Common Emotions (2016), which investigated movement disorders, following a year-long project involving dancers, scientists and people living with Parkinson’s disease.

Candoco Artistic Co-Directors Stine Nilsen and Pedro Machado said:

“Yasmeen Godder is an artist that we have been wanting to work with for many years.  Her works often involve a mix of dynamic and intense movements interspersed with detailed gestures and playful expressions. This mix creates a very visceral effect, a feeling of a 3D experience of the work.

When we first saw Yasmeen’s work we felt that it had an affinity with what we were interested in exploring with the Candoco dancers, to push beyond known ways of expressing ourselves, of interacting and physically relating to each other.”

The new work is paired with performances from the Candoco repertoire: Beheld at The Lowry in Manchester for Face In’s UK premiere (24 Oct), and with Set and Reset/Reset at Italian dance festivals in September. Alexander Whitley’s Beheld features visually-striking powerful duets and breath-taking ensemble dancing set to music by Nils Frahm, while Set and Reset/Reset is Abigail Yager’s acclaimed 2016 restaging of Trisha Brown’s beloved postmodern 1983 Set and Reset.

Candoco Dance Company Face In trio of dancers

Candoco Dance Company Face In

Yasmeen Godder was born in Jerusalem in 1973 and moved with her family to New York City in 1984. She studied dance at the LaGuardia High School for Performing Arts, the Martha Graham school, and the Tisch School of the Arts at NYU. To date Godder has created twelve evening-length works, including Hall (2001), Sudden Birds (2002), Two Playful Pink (2003), Strawberry Cream and Gunpowder (2004), I’m Mean, I Am (2006), Singular Sensation (2008), Love Fire (2009), Storm End Come (2011), See Her Change (2013) and Common Emotions (2016).

In addition to creating for her company, Godder has been commissioned by the Batsheva Dance Company, Matanicola Dance Company, Theater Freiburg, and more. All of her works have been presented in Israel and at numerous venues throughout the world including: Lincoln Center Festival, Sydney Opera House, Montpellier Danse, Hebbel Am Ufer, The Place and Tokyo Festival, among others

Godder is the recipient of numerous awards including a 2001 New York Dance and Performance “Bessie” Award and the prestigious Michael Landau Prize for the Performing Arts from the Tel Aviv Municipality. Most recently Godder received the Israeli Ministry of Culture Award for “Best Creation” in 2015 for her work CLIMAX.

Candoco, the leading company of disabled and non-disabled dancers celebrated its 25th anniversary in 2016 with a programme of performances, special events, participation work and international touring. Founded in 1991 by Celeste Dandeker and Adam Benjamin, Candoco quickly grew into the first professional dance company of disabled and non-disabled artists in the UK. Candoco’s current Artistic Co-Directors Stine Nilsen and Pedro Machado were appointed as Celeste’s successors in 2007, having danced with the company for seven and nine years respectively.

Nilsen and Machado have taken Candoco from the Bird’s Nest in Beijing to the Olympic Stadium in London, performing at the handover ceremonies in 2008 and returning, alongside Coldplay, at the Paralympic Closing in 2012 and have commissioned works for the company from leading choreographers including Emanuel Gat, Rachid Ouramdane, Wendy Houstoun and Javier de Frutos.