Despite the challenges Dance Theatre of Ireland is determined to bring contemporary work to a new audience.
After the Arts Council cut the funding given to the Dublin Contemporary Dance Theatre, the company folded. From the ashes rose a new company, the Dance Theatre of Ireland.
Founders Robert Connor and Loretta Yurick are aware their company will not have continuity of funding and will be reliant on grants on a project-to-project basis. In addition, having a new group of dancers for every project will put added pressure on attempts to develop a distinctive style.
Contemporary dance as an art-form grew and developed in the twentieth century and is described by Robert Connor as,
The art of motion...it’s an exploration of movement for the purpose of communication.
Dance Theatre of Ireland's first success ‘La Beaute des Fleurs’ enabled the company to start rehearsing their next production ‘Freedom’s Gate’. The theme of the production is the continual human struggle for balance between opposing desires.
With grants in such short supply, it is administrator Patricia Kavanagh has to find sponsorship in time for the production’s opening in the Tivoli Theatre, Dublin. In addition, Dorothy Smith is aiming to attract young people to the Tivoli using the dual approach of block bookings at reduced rates and follow up dance classes.
Ultimately however, everything hangs on the dancers, and what they do, they do for love of their art.
An RTÉ News report broadcast 18 September 1990. The reporter is Alasdair Jackson.