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   CORE COMPANY

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David Bower
 

 

 With over thirty years in the industry, David Bower firmly believes in the transformative power of art. His passion lies in exploring the depths of character, uncovering both highs and lows on their journey.
David attended the innovative “Theatre of the Deaf” course at Bulmershe College of Further Education in 1987. Here, he delved into the techniques and cultural impact of Deaf Theatre.
Geoff Buckley, a close friend of Steven Berkoff and a mime artist, left an indelible mark as a teacher on David’s career. Buckley demonstrated that performances could speak volumes without words.
Under the tutelage of lifelong teacher and partner Isolte Avila, David mastered the groundbreaking Signdance Theatre methodology and embraced the Californian Institute of the Arts philosophy.
You might recognize David as Hugh Grant’s brother in Curtis’ Four Weddings and a Funeral. His work at BBC Radio 4 garnered acclaim, including an APA Award nomination in 2021 for portraying John Singer in The Heart is a Lonely Hunter and a best BBC radio production award for his performance as Quasimodo in The Hunchback of Notre Dame (adapted by Jack Thorne and Alex Bulmer).
David hails from Welsh Mancunian roots, with family connections in Anglesey and Salford.
He finds solace in nature, enjoying swimming, cycling, and the literary works of Roger Deakin and Umberto Eco.
These days, David is either working as an art director at the Signdance Collective or collaborating with remarkable artists like  Theatre Of Salt in Croatia and Ana Monro in Slovenia 

 David's Showreel

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MARIA De Graal AKA
Isolte Avila
 

Isolte is the director of Sign Dance Collective International Croatia and Co-Director at Sign Dance Europe. She was born in Cuba and trained with the Cuban ballet and members of the Alvin Ailey Dance Company. Isolte is an international performer and  SDC UK's international collaborations director.  

She has a degree in dance from the California Institute of the Arts. Isolte studied and danced with Ismael Ivo and spent many summers at Vienna's fantastic Tanz Impuls. She also danced with Carlos Ortas's ChoreoArte in Venezuela.

Isolte founded the art form 'Signdance Theatre' and was the original pioneer of signdance™ created in 1987.

In 2001, Isolte formed Signdance Collective with Welsh actor David Bower.   Since then, she has had the privilege of collaborating with the Ana Monro Theatre Company. with Kate Lawrence UK and Ornella D'Agostino Carovana SMI. 

In 2020, with David Bower, she established two new European Organizations to continue developing Signdance Theatre Internationally with E.U Partners.
 

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Angelina Schwammerlin  

 

Angelina Schwammerlin is a contemporary musician from Graz, Austria. She creates acoustic patterns and soundscapes using live, recorded, natural, and digital elements as a sound artist. 2006, Angelina finished her scientific work "Music as Expression" (Ways of Communication). She played in several bands and trained in immersive theatre with Ana Monro in Slovenia.                                                

 In 2015, she founded the umbrella organisation Transmitter Performance, which produces contemporary cultural projects. Angelina has been working with Signdance Collective since 2012. She composed the soundtrack for "Carthage/Cartagena" and is training with the company to explore working methods as a musician within a dance-theatre process. Therefore, she actively develops the pieces and plays the guitar or transverse flute. In addition, she composed and performed in the multimedia performance "In Between Spaces", which went on tour in 2021/22. She can be seen as a vulture in "Oriente Plus.".She says, "I love developing work that engages different cultures and art professionals and to have the opportunity to perform and write music, especially for the Signdance Collective with their accessible way of creating contemporary live performance."

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Lionel M. Macauley
Company Member performer Artist

(Sunrise; 1992-Sunset; 2020. RIP)

Lionel M. Macauley sadly passed away at the age of 27. He was raised in Franklin, NJ (Somerset County) by parents who migrated to the United States from Sierra Leone/West Africa.
His career in entertainment started back in high school when he was a member of the very popular New Jersey dance team, Team Franklin. His acting career spanned 11 years and he did various projects in and out of the Tri-State area. Lionel's career afforded him the opportunity to tour throughout Europe with Signdance Collective International performing before audiences in places like Italy, Austria, Slovenia, Turkey and London.
Lionel delivered spoken word poetry from 2015, performing at major events in Rutgers University as well as featuring in one of their open mic collectives called Verbal Mayhem. One of his last projects was a spoken word EP released in the summer of 2019.
Lionel was always honoured to have had the opportunity to collaborate with the Signdance Collective as we were honoured to have worked with this brilliant man. We are very humbled to have his art in the company's projects. Rest in Peace always, Dear Brother.

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Golda DaHan 
Emerging Company Member 

Israeli  Dancer Golda trained and performed with Moshe Efrati of the former Bat-Sheva Dance Company and the founder of the Sound and Silence (Kol and Demama) Dance Company in Tel-Aviv, incorporating deaf and hearing dancers, touring with them in Israel and Europe.

In 1987, she moved to Britain to join Common Ground Sign Dance Theatre, where she toured, performed, and led workshops in signdance theatre. Golda is a founding artist of the art form signdance theatre.

She's worked with the Shape London' Deaf Dance Project' at Sadler Wells Theatre and performed with Fiesta, Islington. She has a diploma from Hackney College London's Introduction to Community Dance, after which she became a freelance dance artist at Rachel Elliot company, extensively leading dance workshops for deaf children and young people. She also performed with Adesola Akeley of the Saltire Dance Company. She is part of SDC's Next Generation programme funded by the Rothschild Foundation.

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Rob Corcoran  

Rob is a filmmaker and creative producer from Wrexham, North Wales. He founded the production company 73 Degree Films and has produced numerous film, arts and community projects. He is currently a member of the BFI NETWORK x BAFTA Crew.
In 2017, Rob founded the non-profit arm of 73. He has also been recognized for his social entrepreneurship, particularly for projects focussed on helping people from North Wales enter the film industry. He is an UnLtd Award Winner and Social Business Wales Awards nominee.
Rob has worked with SignDance Collective since 2018, collaborating on shows including 'The Turtle Trials' and 'In Between Spaces', which were developed and showcased internationally, including in Slovenia, Austria, Turkey, the USA, and Mexico.
Rob is a BAFTA Cymru member and producer of the FOCUS Wales Film Festival, supported by Ffilm Cymru. Rob
 is a recipient of Signdance Collective UK Rothschild Foundation Next Generation Artist Scheme.

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Viviana Fernandez. Molinares

 

Viviana was born in Cuba but moved to the United States as an infant, spending her formative years in Nebraska and Virginia. She graduated from the University of Miami in Coral Gables, Florida, with a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree. She took numerous graduate courses at Florida International University and Barry University. 
Immediately after graduation, Viviana began working as a set/graphic designer for WLTV23, a local Spanish television station. Within a few months, she was promoted to assistant art director at the National Network (now known as Univision). Here, she worked as a set designer locally and abroad as needed. 

Ford selected her to do a one-woman exhibition in the Wynwood Art District; Viviana has created a tabletop set for a Disney Halloween commercial and designed sets for Office Depot, Imagos, Sabor a Mexico, Ford, Homenaje a Lucho Gatica, Cheyenne. She e was a featured artist in a Big Brothers Big Sisters “Under Improvement” fundraiser and in His House galas. Viviana continues to paint and create in her studio, Micco Florida, for commissions or sometimes for pleasure.

She is an Associate Director 

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 Signdance Group Collabortaors
Associate Directors

Signdance U.K 
Board Of directors
 

Go To All projects 

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Zoe Partington
   

Co/Director of Dis/Ordinary Architecture works predominately in architecture and design as a creative influencer, consultant and trainer for the cultural sector, as well as a researcher, auditor and creative equality trainer for museums and galleries to develop their skills and experience for meeting the needs of disabled visitors. She believes that in today's changing culture that our environment, both virtual and physical, would be more inspiring by placing disabled artists as creative professionals at the centre. Zoe is a practising artist who uses her sight loss to inform her approach. She uses her installations to develop viscerally-powerful audio-visual and tactile representations of disabled people’s journeys and experiences of moving through spaces using digital engagement.  

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Soobie Whitfield
 

 Soobie Whitfield graduated from Trinity/Laban in 1985 with a BA(Hons) in Dance Theatre. Having spent a few years touring as a founder member of Insight Physical Theatre company, she went on to post-graduate training as a teacher and has enjoyed many years in education, as a Performing Arts teacher, director and choreographer in Buckinghamshire schools and community groups. Recently Soobie successfully studied for an MA in Applied Theatre at The Royal Central School for Speech and Drama in London, with a focus on community, place and environment.  Soobie is now focusing on freelance work and has been working with SDC on various community engagement projects. 

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David D Omni  

David Omni was raised in the Alamar district, east of Havana, which according to David D, is a “young city, formed in the 1970s, as a project.” David D joined Omni Zona Franca shortly after leaving school, feeling at home in a space where, according to the artist, “I could express my opinions, what I said was important.” Important indeed, as some of Omni Zona’s recordings, including Protesto or Protest, has become a rallying call for a growing pro-democracy, human rights movement on the Communist island nation. His music – which pounds with rap lyrics, but where the cadence of reggae, the energy of rock or techno music, the magic of new age and eastern music can also be felt, with even a touch of African rhythm or even reggaetón suddenly emerging – is contagious and highly enjoyable at the same time that it invites reflection.  Nonetheless, it has provoked scepticism from the more orthodox who refuse to accept it as Hip Hop. Nonetheless, David defends his right to transcend all limits. He terms his innovation “Free Hop".

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Joke Menssink
    

Joke is from Holland. Joke was a part of the critically acclaimed Dutch theatre group, Werkteater focusing on production and background community-based research. She founded several theatre organisations including her favourite, The World of Diagonaal. My work is like an artistic labyrinth, I have my own methodology of process and realisation. With 'Invitation', I have acted as an advisor and director for SDC since they started. I am also a co-owner of an old monastery that has 50 guest rooms and holds an ongoing Performance Art Forum. 
I studied Information and Media and recently reapproached my many websites to produce an archive of my work. I have just developed a community-based movie house and monthly walk-in theatre in Groningen. I was previously based on a barge in Central Amsterdam for many years and now have relocated to Groningen where I have a studio.

 

www.ruebarree.com 

www.unlimitedartscompany.org 

www.menssink.com
 

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 associate Directors

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Dave Gray

Creative Entrepreneur Dave Gray has conceived, originated, and realised a unique series of artistic projects bridging business, local authority, education, and the third sector. He established Rampant Dragon Ltd in 2005, setting up the collaborative workspace The Foundry and launching a series of art and music events across North Wales to highlight the skills and talents of creative practitioners.
 

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Goro Osojnik

Producer and actor Gorazd Osojnik (nickname Goro) was born on January 20, 1960, in Ljubljana. He studied Spanish and philosophy at the Faculty of Arts in Ljubljana. He is an Actor, cultural manager, and trainer with working experience in Slovenia, Western Europe (the UK, Netherlands, and France), and the Middle East (Turkey, Ukraine). He joined the theatre in 1979 as a playwright. Since 1983, he has been a member, actor, and co-author of the Anne Monro Theatre. From 1983 to 2002, he played and co-authored most of the performances of the Anne Monro Theater in over 35 different performances. In addition, he acted in Slovenian films and in children's plays, several TV shows.
In 1995, he invented the concept of Ana Desetnica, the international festival of street theatre, and in 1996, with the support of the National House, they became a regular feature of the LENT festival program. Since 1998, the Ana Desetnica festival has been taking place in Ljubljana and other Slovenian cities, where he is the leader and chief selector. 

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Pedro De Senna

Associate director-writer in residence and performer at SDC. He is a theatre practitioner and academic. He was born in Rio de Janeiro and started performing in 1993. He has been a member of the Signdance Collective since 2010.

Pedro has worked as a performer and dramaturge for "New Gold", "Half-a-Penny", and "The Other Side of the Coin". He has also acted as assistant director for  "Carthage/Cartagena"  and "Bad Elvis". Pedro is writing Oriente Plus and dramaturged the beautiful In Between Spaces for Signdance Collective.

He is a lecturer in contemporary theatre and a programme leader on the BA theatre arts course with a special focus on theatre directing at Middlesex University. His academic research focuses on translation and adaptation, examining the relationship between directing, dramaturgy, and disability aesthetics. Pedro’s chapter on the company’s creative processes for "New Gold" is included in Katja Krebs' book, "Translation and Adaptation in Theatre and Film" (Routledge)
His award-winning play "A tragédia de Ismene, Princesa de Tebas" is based on the Theban myth of Oedipus and has been published by Móbile Editorial. 

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 Viviana Molinares

Viviana was born in Cuba and moved to the United States as an infant, spending her formative years in Nebraska and Virginia. She graduated from the University of Miami in Coral Gables, Florida, with a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree, later taking numerous graduate courses at Florida International University and at Barry University. 
Immediately after graduation, Viviana began working as a set/graphic designer for WLTV23, a local Spanish television station. Within a few months, she was promoted to assistant art director at the National Network (now known as Univision). Here, she worked as a set designer locally and abroad as needed. 

Ford selected her to do a one-woman exhibition in the Wynwood Art District; Viviana has created a tabletop set for a Disney Halloween commercial and designed sets for Office Depot, Imagos, Sabor a Mexico, Ford, Homenaje a Lucho Gatica, Cheyenne. She was a featured artist in a Big Brothers Big Sisters “Under Improvement” fundraiser and in his House galas.
Viviana continues to paint and create in her studio, Micco Florida, for commissions or sometimes for pleasure.

 Sign DanceGroup  Secretaries 

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 Yvonne Richter Skiljic - Dalmatia Adventures -www.dalmatiaadventures.com
Signdance Europe Pakostane

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Martyn Wheeler - Wheeler Groves  Accountants Dumfries & Galloway Scotland
Signdance Collective LTD U.K

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  Europe -Wide Producer -
Lumeos, Croatia 
Director-Alda Sovitti-Borcilo

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