Central School of Ballet announces new MA Choreography programme participants

Central School of Ballet has announced that former Royal Ballet choreographer Charlotte Edmonds and Matthew Bourne/Ballet Central dancer Natasha Chu have both joined the organisation’s renowned ballet focused MA Choreography programme. The MA takes 18 months on average to complete, providing the opportunity for professional choreographers to hone their skills, engage in research and develop their practice at the highest level.

Charlotte trained at The Royal Ballet Lower School and Rambert School of Ballet and Contemporary Dance. She was The Inaugural Young Choreographer at The Royal Ballet (2015 – 2018) and now works as a freelance dance-maker across Europe.

Charlotte said: “The MA provides a timely opportunity to reflect on my choreographic process to improve outcomes in terms of production and to also consider my career development with new skills and knowledge.”

Natasha is a Central School of Ballet graduate gaining a BA (Hons) in Professional Dance and Performance in 2018. For the Ballet Central tour, she performed works by Matthew Bourne, Wayne McGregor and Christopher Gable, and choreographed a piece for the Central’s End of Year Show and later for Ballet Central. After graduating, she joined Matthew Bourne’s New Adventures for the world premiere of Romeo & Juliet, which toured the UK in 2019. She worked with Payne Productions on the research and development for Bluebeard: A Chamber’s Scent and later joined Arielle Smith’s Project Dot.

Natasha said: “The chance to return to Central on the MA Choreography programme will provide a crucial platform for me to interrogate, challenge and develop my choreographic vision. This will undoubtedly have a significant role in realising my future aspirations in dance.”

Central launched the MA Choreography programme in 2011 with considerable success. The degree has become a recognised way for professional choreographers to develop their skills and advance their careers. One of its first graduates was Christopher Marney, Central’s Artistic Director. Previous graduates include well-established choreographers Sophie Laplane and Jenna Lee. Anjali Mehra-Hughes from Matthew Bourne’s New Adventures and Sandrine Monin from Phoenix Dance Theatre are current MA students at Central, due to graduate this summer.

Central’s MA programme is unique with its focus on ballet and scope for traditional practices to be redefined and expanded. It provides a bespoke approach to developing expertise. At its core the MA celebrates the importance of communication in dance and each choreographer is encouraged to explore and refine their individual choreographic voice. The postgraduate degree complements Central’s core BA (Hons) Professional Dance and Performance degree, both courses validated by the University of Kent.

Louise Ainley, Central’s Director Higher Education Programmes said: “Central’s MA in Choreography continues to provide opportunities to make new work in a context where the art form of dance can be explored, interrogated and extended. The outstanding successes of our MA alumni is assurance that our postgraduate programme continues to support the career development of talent choreographers who in turn are making a significant impact on the dance profession.”

Both Natasha and Charlotte are kindly supported by The Leverhulme Trust through their Arts Scholarships initiative. Central is particularly grateful to The Levehulme Trust which allows emerging choreographers to continue to train, to develop as artists, and influence the dance industry with new ideas and skills. For many aspiring choreographers the opportunities offered through Central’s MA programme would be impossible without such support.