13 February 2017
Author: James Cousins & The Place

Resolution throback: James Cousins

This year we hopped on our time machine and took a look at the past of Resolution. We had a chat with five previous Resolution artists whose choreographic career has galloped and chasséd since then. Here are their most vivid memories of Resolution, the things they wouldn't do again, and their tips for new choreographers.

James Cousins participated in Resolution 2011 and is now a Work Place artist. You can see his new piece Rosalind here in March. 

Visit James's website for more information

1. Why did you apply to Resolution?

I applied for Resolution simply to have a platform to present my work. I had made pieces continually as a student at London Contemporary Dance School and wanted to continue trying ideas and have the chance to create a longer production.

2. What do you remember most about your experience in Resolution?

I have great memories of Resolution. The theatre was buzzing with a really excited and positive energy; everyone was there to support not to judge and I felt very supported to present my work in its very early stages of development.

Photo from James's's piece, There We Have Been which has toured the UK and has been presented at The Place to sold out audiences.

3.  What would you have changed (about the process or your piece) if you could go back in time?

I’m not sure I would change anything about the process. Yes, it was created very quickly with little time to rehearse and refine but I think that’s all part of it. Of course, choreographically I’d make changes if I were to go back to it now but it was an important part of the journey for me.

4. How did Resolution shape your career as a choreographer?

I was fortunate enough to be given a second night in the resolution calendar as another company had to pull out. That gave me the chance to get more people along to see the work and I got a few small performances off the back of it. In the longer term, it maybe played a small part in me winning the New Adventures Choreographer Award as Matthew Bourne came to see the show and 6 months later I won the award!

Photo from James's's latest piece, Rosalind which will be at The Place this March. More

5. What would be your advice to an aspiring choreographer? (in general, not just in terms of Resolution)

My advice to anyone wanting to choreograph would be to always be true to yourself, be playful and do what you want to do; creating something to please others (or what you think may please others!) may work in the short-term but won’t make you happy in the long run (and ultimately we should always be having fun in this very privileged role!). In terms of using Resolution as a platform to further your career, get as many people to see the work as possible and have a conversation with them about it; personal connections go a long way in this industry and feedback is invaluable.


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