An intimate alternative to independence
Flying Solo brings three international solo dance artists with roots in the UK, Ghana and the Caribbean together to explore their artistry in relation to ‘Home’, their roots and the core of who they are. In 2019 they come together to test that core, in challenging environments close to and far from home, through solo and triple bill performances in Ghana and the UK.
How do we know ourselves, be ourselves, remain ourselves? How do we grow by meeting different places, different people, and stay true? Maybe first we must get lost; honestly, openly, fiercely, and be brave enough to go both far afield and right back ‘Home’.
The project brings dance artists Tyrone Isaac-Stuart, hip-hop, contemporary dancer and musician, Hayley Matthews contemporary dancer and vocalist and Nii-Tete Yartey Contemporary African dancer and choreographer together. And their solo works FRACTALS, Home Solo and Dyaakye. In the triple bills their solos will be threaded through with moments together.
There will be 9 performances as part of Flying Solo during 2019, starting on the weekend of April 27th, when each soloist will perform their own solo in a place where they feel they began. These solos will take place at St Barnabas Church, Pithanger, London where Hayley choreographed her first piece at age 15 and close to where Hayley grew up in her family of dancers and musicians; Noyam African Dance Institute, Dodowa, Ghana founded and built by Tete’s late father and beloved Father of dance in Ghana, Professor Francis Nii-Yartey, this will mark Noyam re-opening its doors; and on Wantstead Flats, where Tyrone used to go as a kid to play his saxophone, thinking that no-one could see him if he couldn’t see them.
Coming from the challenge and solace of Home the soloists will then come together in Hastings, UK at The Creative Space, where they will open an informal sharing of the work on Monday May 6. They will then challenge their core beings in the intimate and up close space of Brighton Spiegeltent, with a triple bill performance as part of a Day of Dance ENSEMBLE is curating for Brighton Fringe Festival on May 13.
On May 18 they will challenge themselves further by delving into the forest for a performance for The People’s Forest in Epping Forest. In October they will travel to Ghana for a triple bill at Noyam African Dance Institute. And to land back home they will go alone to places close to where they live now over the weekend of November 23. Final November performances will again be solos and take place on Walthamstow Wetlands, where Tyrone now goes to wander and restore his creative mind, at Noyam, marking the anniversary of Professor Francis Nii-Yartey’s death and at St Luke’s Kentish Town, where Hayley goes at times to think about believing in God, in the challenge of seeking local community.
The project will conclude and celebrate with an exhibition of photography and film, by photographer Al Simmons, who will be documenting the project in December in London.
Noyam, Dodowa and The People’s Forest performances will both include a three day intensive lead by the Flying Solo artists and creative practitioner Martin Gent, open to any independent artist. In Walthamstow in September and Ghana in October.
The Solos and Soloists
Tete, performer, teacher and choreographer is the son of Ghana’s foremost dance choreographer and teacher, the late Professor Francis Nii-Yartey. Having taken on directorship of National Dance Company Ghana in 2015 after his father’s death, becoming its youngest director, Tete recently stepped down to turn his attention to his father’s love and brainchild Noyam Dance Company and Noyam Institute of dance.
We spend our time searching everywhere for keys to doors that were never locked to us. We step out scavenging for scraps forgetting that we are the lions that went on the hunt, we play jester to a throne whose crown belongs on our head. Daakye interrogates the place of the Contemporary African Artist in a modern world and how his past can be both his distraction and salvation.
Hayley, dancer, choreographer and Rolfer and founder of Ensemble. She trained independently with mentorships with Adam Benjamin (Candoco founder) and Professor Francis Nii Yartey, Ghana, alongside following an intuitive ‘independent’ training across the UK and Europe. Hayley dances and brings voice into her work, she strives to dance to bring experiences of intimacy and grace to audiences and to find courage not to hide but show herself, in vulnerability, purity, and fierceness in performance.
Home Solo, combining dance and live music on the butone, drum, guitar and in song, journeys with acceptance of the isolation of trauma as an opportunity to grow. It tracks a way back to oneself as one is now, and the sanctuary ones artistry can provide when one feels, due to traumatic experience, that one stands beside oneself.
Tyrone, soloist, musician, conceptualist, collaborator and choreographer, blends his skills as dancer and musician with spoken word in dance theatre stories. He studied Jazz saxophone at Middlesex University and the University of New Orleans and developed further as a dancer while performing for East London’s finest; Boy Blue Entertainment.
In line with an album Tyrone is currently making, Fractals explores never ending patterns, there is a journey within it, it seeks how repetition can be a journey to the new. Fractals takes different forms in different spaces, it is a collection that researches it’s relationship to different indoor and outdoor spaces.
The solos are a chance to see these dancers up-close, they will be raw and bare, relying only on the dancer’s skills as performers, their individuality and courage.
You can view the Home Solo trailer in this link https://vimeo.com/258504637 Tete and Tyrone’s solo trailers, will be listed on our tour dates page soon. You can find full Flying Solo performance and workshop dates with links to bookings when they are open on our tour schedule page.
Flying Solo is supported by Arts Council England, DanceEast, OPENEaling, Noyam Institute of Dance and Norfolk Arts Projects Fund