Spokeswoman Chloe Barker said: “Brighton & Hove-based arts charity South East Dance has been awarded new funds and equipment from three Sussex-based organisations to help it continue to support local artists and communities.
“Social intelligence company Brandwatch has donated ten laptops and The Sussex Community Foundation has awarded a grant of £3,400 from its NET Coronavirus Fund to help South East Dance buy equipment to help the people it works with through The Welcome Project to access online dance classes and workshops while meeting up in person isn’t an option.
“In addition, Brighton & Hove City Council has awarded a discretionary grant of £10,000 to support south-east based dance artists who have fallen through the cracks of arts and cultural emergency funding.
“This will allow South East Dance to commission local freelance artists whose livelihoods have been devastated by the impact of the COVID-19 crisis to host artists café events and create a new programme of online dance work to be launched this autumn.
Rose Kigwana, senior participation producer at South East Dance, said: “For the past three years we’ve been working with partners including Brighton Unemployed Centre Families Project and Brooke Mead Extra Care Facility to get people in the Tarner area of the city dancing in the run up to the launch of The Dance Space – the city’s new home for dance.
“Since lockdown and social isolation made dancing together in person impossible, we’ve taken our sessions online, recognising however that not everyone can actually get online. “These new donations have meant we can offer laptops and tablets on loan to those who need them and bring a little dance joy into their lives – even if it is via a screen for now!
“We want to say a huge thank you to Brandwatch, Sussex Community Foundation and Brighton & Hove City Council on behalf of the communities and artists we support.”
She added: “South East Dance is an arts charity, challenging perceptions of what dance looks like: how it’s made, who it’s for and what it can achieve. We support dance artists, present bold new work, develop the infrastructure for dance and get more people across the south east involved in dance.
“In 2018-19 more than 86,756 people connected with our work – live and digitally. We presented 48 performances engaging live audiences of over 7,878 people; we supported the development of 663 artists from the UK and overseas; and we provided opportunities for over 14,000 individuals to participate in our dance workshops and classes.
South East Dance is the driving force behind The Dance Space, a brand-new home for dance in Brighton & Hove opening in summer 2021.”
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