Overture is an exceptional professional development opportunity for emerging dance artists and dance teachers working in communities across England.

Thank you for making such a personalised programme, I have never met a more caring, inspiring, and generous company of yourself and New Adventures.

Hayley Lemon, 2019/20 Overture Cohort


Overture is our professional development programme for practitioners from a variety of genres who have been working in community or education settings for less than five years. Each year, we hope to find a group of artists whose work spans both urban and rural settings and who represent the diversity of contemporary England.

Over the course of six months the selected artists meet for three residential weekends at the Company’s base at Farnham Maltings, Surrey and visit New Adventures on tour with the current production. Each residential comprises of practical workshops, class and skills-sharing as well as inspirational guest teachers from a variety of dance backgrounds sharing their practice.

With workshops in areas such as personal development, advanced community dance skills, business development and networking, we aim to provide the cohort with a range of skills to support them in reaching the next level of their careers as community dance artists. 

This year, we're working with 16 talented dance artists that we found through an open call. We're excited to go on this journey with each of them and can't wait to share what they get up to over the coming months. 


In 2020, we introduced our first ever Dance Artist Overture programme, for the cohort of New Adventures dancers and Dance Artists who deliver our workshops and engagement projects!  

All at different stages of their artistic and teaching journeys, the programme offers 6 development sessions that will focus on different areas of the New Adventures methodology along with opportunities to hear about other artists' approaches and a chance to develop their own practice. 

Invited guests will include Tom Hobden, Joanna Rhodes, About Time Dance Company Artistic Director Jenny Reeves and The Pappy Show Artistic Director Kane Husbands. The programme is led by Associate Artistic Director Etta Murfitt and Resident Artists Kerry Biggin and Paul Smethurst.


Since 2016/17, we have worked with 62 young professionals though Overture, who live and work all over England, spanning Cornwall to Cumbria. Members of the Overture alumni have gone on to successfully further their careers in the industry, building their own community practices and regional networks. We have seen many of them take up roles as dance development managers for national organisations and others realise their own project ambitions, securing Arts Council funding to develop their artistic vision. 

Listen to what our 2019/20 cohort had to say about their Overture experience.⁣⁣⁣⁣

“It's hard to explain how much of an impact the programme has made on me, but I know that it has definitely changed me as a practitioner, and as person, and will continue to influence the choices I make as I continue with my career.” - Amber Calland, 2019/20 Overture Cohort  
"It has completely made me a better person; personally and professionally and has allowed me to re ignite a lot of creativity and get so passionate about community dance and to know how there are NO LIMITATIONS in what I can do." - Laura Elizabeth, 2019/20 Overture Cohort