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Richard Alston Dance Company to close after more than 25 years

Richard Alston. Photo: Hugo Glendinning Richard Alston. Photo: Hugo Glendinning
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Choreographer Richard Alston has announced he will close his dance company in 2020 after more than 25 years.

The Richard Alston Dance Company was formed in November 1994, and has been based at the Place in London since its inception.

Alston also became artistic director of the Place in 1994, but announced he was stepping down from that role earlier this year.

Choreographer Richard Alston to step down as the Place’s artistic director

His connection with the Place goes back to the 1960s, when he became one of the first students at the London Contemporary Dance School, which has been based at the Place since 1969.

The Richard Alston Dance Company’s last tour will be in the spring of 2020, including a season at Sadler’s Wells.

A statement said the Place would continue its commitment to new work, including “touring and producing the next generation of successful young artists”.

Alston said: “The Place has been my home for almost fifty years and I am nothing but grateful for the invaluable support and encouragement I have received over that time. Now change is very much in the air and inevitably it is the turn of others – I accept that. The Place must embrace change if it is to thrive and I wish these younger artists well.”

However, he said that he would be looking to “try to find new opportunities to make dance”, adding: “I am not ready to stop. I still have dances in me and I feel strongly that mature artists are an important part of the dance ecology. There are not many of us.”

The Place chief executive Claire Connor said: “Like all great leaders, Richard Alston is a lifelong learner and our link to that tradition of innovation and pioneering in contemporary dance. His utter devotion to his craft, dancers and the artist’s voice permeate through everything we strive to do.”

She added that Alston was “part of the DNA of the Place and will remain a major influence for the next generation of artists”.

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