Dance Manchester 'blends' into Company Chameleon

Published: 14 July 2019
Reporter: David Upton

Following the loss of Arts Council funding last year and an organisational review, Dance Manchester, the dance development organisation for Greater Manchester, will close for business after 27 years but is to transfer its remit to Company Chameleon, an organisation it helped to seed 12 years ago.

The transfer, supported by the Arts Council and Greater Manchester Combined Authority, was made to ensure investment in the North West dance sector is maintained and that dance continues to flourish in the region.

Dance Manchester brought dance experiences and access to dance opportunities to communities across Greater Manchester, working with schools, youth centres, pupil referral units and universities and in care homes and supported the development of professional dancers through training, development and commissioning programmes across Manchester.

It included Urban Moves International Dance Festival from 2005-2014 which presented professional dance performances outdoors across Manchester from Belgium, France, Greece, Italy, Spain, South Korea and the UK. It also worked in partnership with Company Chameleon on Stride, Greater Manchester’s annual young men’s dance project.

Leanne Feeley, general manager of Company Chameleon, said, “since establishing Company Chameleon, we’ve flown the flag for dance in Greater Manchester, and throughout this time, always been committed to reaching as many people as possible through dance.

“It’s fantastic that GMCA is committed in their continuing support and development of dance in the region and that we can work in partnership with them to fulfil this commitment.

“More than anything, we want dance in Greater Manchester to be on the map and we want it to be celebrated in every way that it can be.”