4 day Vertical Dance Masterclass at ACCA, Brighton July 24th – 27th

Come and join us for a 4-day Vertical Dance Master class on the gorgeous convex walls of the Attenborough Centre for Creative Arts, Brighton, July 24th – 27th led by Lindsey Butcher and Kate Lawrence.

Just imagine working outdoors from 10 – 4.30 everyday, blue skies, sunshine all for £320. Masterclass attendees are additionally invited to contribute to conversations and explorations around vertical dance as part of Gravity & Levity’s ongoing Behind Closed Doors peer learning research project on 28-29 July, also at ACCA.  For more info & to book email info@gravity-levity.net.

Course info: 

Following a dance warm up each day led by Lindsey, we’ll move straight on to working on the outside walls of the venue, researching what movement vocabulary is made available here.

Working on sit harnesses, we’ll work through vertical dance vocabulary with an emphasis placed on correct alignment, technique and spatial awareness, building throughout the week towards more dynamic vocabulary.

We will also use these pre-lunch sessions to look at guided improvisations into creative play. We’ll look at spatial relationships, and exploring the available potential between floor, air and landscape working in solos, duets and groups.

In the afternoons we’ll start with specific vertical dance conditioning exercises (taught by Kate but borrowed from Wanda Moretti), to warm up before making maximum use of the height and space available and in particular spending time exploring the ‘peculiarities’ of working with a long convex curved wall.

We’ll focus on wall running techniques, the ability to work and stay in unison particularly when you can’t always see your fellow dancers. We’ll also explore some taught choreographic sequences to challenge your spatial orientation and practise building choreography and performing longer phrases.

Please wear multiple snug layers around your hips & waist for your comfort. Long sleeved shirts are also handy for some moves. If you have a preferred climbing harness & any kit (gri gris, rigs, carabiners etc), please bring them with you and sunblock!

Pre-requisites for attending the course:

You must have previously attended a vertical dance course or have significant single point harness experience on the wall. You should be familiar with, confident and competent in demonstrating the pre-requisite list of spatial and physical propositions;

Planks on different planes

Finding your balance point on feet or hands under the rigging point

Jumping away and returning to the wall  – with control!

Comfortable with rotations, (basic forward and back somy’s) and basic cartwheels on the wall.

None of these have to be perfect though, just available to you!


Attenborough Centre for the Creative Arts,(ACCA) is set within the University of Sussex grounds, statistically the sunniest campus (allegedly), on the edge of the South Downs National Park with the bright lights of Brighton just 10 mins away.

Getting there:

By train: The nearest train station is Falmer (approx.) 5 mins walk from there to the Attenborough Centre and the train takes less than 10 mins from both Lewes and Brighton. Trains run very regularly through during the day (approx every 15 mins).

From the train station follow signs to the University of Sussex. Walk through the underpass and follow the footpath until you reach a zebra crossing. Turn left here and follow the pavement around until you reach the Gardner Centre Rd on your right. Walk up Gardner Centre Rd to find the main entrance of the building. The Attenborough Centre is the building with round red brick towers.

By bus: The number 25 and 25X bus bring you from central Brighton all the way to the University campus. Alight at the ACCA and Sports Centre stop and you will see the Attenborough Centre (building with round red brick towers) through a stretch of tall trees on the lawn.