Continuing Professional Development Programmes

Dance Research Studio is continuously evolving its professional development programmes. Below is a compilation of ongoing and past continuing professional development (CPD) programmes.


Free online workshop led by Jacky Lansley and Sally E. Dean

During the pandemic crisis we have all been severely challenged while struggling to maintain emotional and physical equilibrium within the new and strange reality.  For many it will have been a time of isolation and splitting from the warmth and energy of colleagues. The Speaking Dancer online workshop will be an opportunity for artists to come together to create, play, learn and collaboratively explore the possibilities of online research, which draws on practices concerned with: the thinking body, vocal dance and visual language.

The workshop offers students coming from a professional and or performing arts degree background the opportunity to rethink their relationship to their practice, within the supportive and innovative context of the Dance Research Studio online. The workshop will introduce cross disciplinary training methods and stimuli which support the artist as both performer and author. Focus areas will include:

  • Exploring the dynamics of perception. Developing awareness of one’s own physical and autobiographical patterns.
  • Emotional embodiment: investigation of senses and feelings in movement and vocalisation, both inside and outside the performance context.
  • Developing choreographic, visual and conceptual skills as both a performer and a maker.
  • Integrating site, costume and object towards performative experiences.

Jacky Lansley (UK) is a choreographer, writer and performance artist who has been practicing for over four decades. Her work combines visual and theatrical disciplines and is often created out of personal and political concerns. The artist was a founder of UK’s major independent dance studios – X6 Dance Space and Chisenhale Dance Space – and in 2002 she founded the Dance Research Studio which continues the innovatory legacy of these predecessors. DRS has curated a series of unique interdisciplinary performance and CPD training projects including: Stepping Stones (2014/15),  Crossing Paths (2016), About Us (2017-19) and We Are Animals (2019/20). Important partners on these projects have included: De Montfort University, Bluecoat Arts Centre, Dance4/iC4C, Oxford House Theatre, Chisenhale Dance Space and Modern Art Oxford.  During May-November 2020 DRS is delivering an off/ online programme of workshops, residencies and research opportunities, funded by Arts Council England, for independent/freelance artists during the Covid pandemic crisis, see for details.

Lansley directs the DRS bi-annual international CPD programme –  ‘The Speaking Dancer: Interdisciplinary Performance Training’, which she founded in 2008. In 2019/20 she worked in collaboration with CELL gallery, who curated the exhibition ‘X6 Dance Space: Liberation Notes’ to international acclaim. Lansley was a founding editor/writer of New Dance magazine and has published widely on dance and performance. She is co-author (with Fergus Early) of ‘The Wise Body’, published by Intellect Books, 2011; her more recent book ‘Choreographies: Tracing the Materials of an Ephemeral Art Form’ was published by Intellect Books in 2017. In 2018 she was awarded One Dance UK’s prestigious Jane Attenborough Award, for services to dance. She now balances her time between her own creative practice and supporting intergenerational artists and companies through mentoring, teaching and  directing DRS, which is forging an identity as one of the leading independent contexts for interdisciplinary dance research.

Sally E. Dean (UK/USA/NO), has been an interdisciplinary choreographer, performer, teacher and writer for over 20 years across Europe, Asia and the USA. Her teaching and performance work is inspired by somatic-based practices, her cross-cultural projects in Asia and her background in both dance and theatre – integrating site, costume and object. Sally leads the collaborative ‘Somatic Movement, Costume & Performance Project’ (2011), designing Somatic Costumes that elicit psychophysical awareness and generate performative experiences. Her work has been supported by the Arts Council England and the British Council. She is as Research Fellow at Oslo National Academy of Arts, Norway.

Sally is a certified teacher of Skinner Releasing Technique, an Amerta Movement practitioner (with Suprapto Suryodarmo from Java), and a British Wheel of Yoga certified Scaravelli teacher. She also has a background in butoh, physical theatre, improvisation and playwriting. Sally has taught workshops and lectured internationally in university, community and festival settings to include Oslo National Academy of Arts (Norway), Welcome Collection (London), Impuls Tanz (Vienna, Austria), Dance Ability Finland, Aalto University (Finland), the National Arts University in Surakarta/Java, Sri Lanka Foundation, CIT Cork School of Music (Ireland) as well as the UK’s leading dance, theatre and costume design universities: Royal Holloway University, Trinity Laban, Central School of Speech and Drama, London College of Fashion, Roehampton University, Chichester University, Coventry University and more. She also teaches ongoing professional classes at Siobhan Davies Dance Studios and Dance Research Studios.


Images of previous ‘The Speaking Dancer’ workshops at Dance Research Studio and (top right) site specific research led by Jacky Lansley.

Saturday October 24th 2020
The workshop will run from 10:00 – 17:00 with breaks off zoom for at home R&D.

Where: via ZOOM

Cost: This workshop is free.

How to register: Please send a CV and short statement about why you are interested in participating to 


Image Credit: Jacky Lansley performing ‘Dance Object Revisited’ as part of ‘X6 Dance Space (1976-80): Liberation Notes’ at Cell Project Space, photographed by Rob Harris.


Image Credit: Sally E. Dean in ‘Something’s in the Living Room’, photographed by Kevin Ricks/Sara Popowa.

CPD Programmes

Past Programmes


DRS will be rescheduling this workshop and will open applications once a new date has been confirmed.  For further inquiries and expressions of interest please send an email to

Cost: £60 full/ £50 concession

We Are Animals Professional Development Workshop (Postponed)

There is a growing and urgent cultural and social momentum driving forward awareness about environmental sustainability and animal extinction. Dance Research Studio (DRS) in collaboration with Dance4/iC4C is curating a new programme of performance research, Artist Residencies, CPD workshops, discussion and writing for 2020, which will engage with this urgent momentum. The programme is called ‘We Are Animals’ and aims to make a valuable research contribution through remembering that we too are animals.

As part of this unique programme, DRS will be hosting a day long CPD workshop to explore the ecological crisis through interdisciplinary practice. Led by Jacky Lansley, with members of the ‘We Are Animals’ research team,  this workshop will offer participants an opportunity to rethink their relationship to their artistic practice and develop new artistic research skills and strategies. The workshop will draw on a wide range of cultural and ecological narratives, which celebrate the human animal as part of human subjectivity. These sources will provide a framework for creative research, which aims to achieve some understanding of human symbiosis and empathy with other animals. 

The workshop is open to dancers, actors and performance/live artists with a graduate or postgraduate qualification, and/or three years professional experience in one of the performing arts (can be combined with visual practice).


2017/18 – About Us Workshops

This is an ongoing series of professional development interdisciplinary workshops offered along side performances of ‘About Us’ reflecting key concerns of  the performance installation. The workshops are led by members of the company and take place at Dance Research Studio and different host sites. Participants are invited to explore a range of experiences that are personal and political and have the opportunity to create autobiographical performance material that will be shared. 

The workshops offer interdisciplinary dancers, actors, performance and visual artists coming from a professional or arts degree background the opportunity to rethink their relationship to their practice, while accessing new processes and methodologies.

CPW main image
Crossing Paths – tennis

2016 – Crossing Paths Workshops

These three special CPD workshops offered a unique opportunity for a wider group of experienced practitioners to engage with the Crossing Paths research ideas and approaches.

In The Personal is Political, participants were invited to bring ideas/material/stories to explore through interdisciplinary performance. Outside and Inside allowed participants to explore a variety of embodied and artistic disciplines that used concepts of outside and inside – including work in different locations. In Women and Dance, participants explored ways to harness the multi-skilled, physical intelligence of female dance/performance practitioners to contradict the cultural oppression of women.  The workshops were lead by renowned interdisciplinary practitioners including: Jacky Lansley, Sylvia Hallet, Sally Dean, Esther Huss and other Associate Artists of DRS.


Archive TIP image web
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TIP Archive 1

2014/15 – The Interdisciplinary Performer (TIP)

This professional development programme provided a unique research and training opportunity for performance practitioners interested in cross art form processes and techniques. Through a series of rigorous interdisciplinary workshops, delivered by an outstanding faculty of practitioner/tutors, participants were introduced to a range of performance disciplines and methodologies that enabled them to develop their practice and meet the challenges of a hybrid performance culture.

Programme Director: Jacky Lansley (Artistic Director, Dance Research Studio)
Guest Tutors include: Anne Bean (Performance Artist/Sculptor), Frank Bock (Curator, Independent Dance), Sally Dean (Performance/Somatic Practitioner), Fergus Early (Green Candle Dance Company), Jamila Johnson-Small/Alexandrina Hemsley (Project O), Esther Huss (Dandelion Collective), Lily Susan Todd (Theatre Director/Writer), Sylvia Hallett (Composer/Musician), Ursula Early (Big Bear Theatre Company)

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