Lift Off Dance Festival

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Lift Off Dance Festival is the annual dance festival held at South Hill Park Arts Centre since 2000.

The festival aims to offer a chance for everyone to experience dance as a participant, performer or audience member and bring together those new to dance or taking their first steps on stage, with those working in the world of professional dance as teacher, performer or choreographer.

Initially started by Bracknell Forest Council, South Hill Park took full ownership of the festival under the artistic direction of Lena Dee from 2005.

Each year the festival hosts several dance performances by the local community and professional dance companies, alongside a variety of dance workshops, dance cinema, live dance performance relays from around the globe and related dance events.

Professional dance companies who have performed their own evenings’ work during the festival include StopGap, Tavaziva Dance, Sonia Sabri, Jasmin Vardimon to name but a few.

The festival has grown in size and ambition since its inception and the Galas now not only showcase local dance talent from Berkshire but also dancers from Surrey, Hampshire and London and surrounding areas.  The Galas now include performances and workshops led by professional dancers and choreographers so the participants and audience members get to see where the years of hard dance training can lead and are an inspiration and insight for many into the world of professional dance.

Each year new elements are added to the festival to widen the appeal for those learning, performing or watching the festival events including the recent addition of the latest technologies to provide live relay links to Opera House around the world for their ballet performances.

Please contact Lena Dee on for information on how to take part in the festival or for more information on any of this year’s event.


Lift Off Dance Festival 2017

Woolf Works
ROH Ballet: Woolf Works

The first revival of Wayne McGregor’s critically acclaimed ballet triptych to music by Max Richter, inspired by the works of Virginia Woolf and starring Alessandra Ferri and Mara Galeazzi.

Cinema, £20, Conc £19

Wed 8 Feb, 7.15pm-9.50pm

The Sleeping Beauty
ROH Ballet: The Sleeping Beauty

Celebrate 70 years of The Royal Ballet’s landmark production of Petipa’s classic ballet and enter an enchanted world of princesses, fairy godmothers and magical spells, to glorious music by Tchaikovsky.

Cinema, £20, Conc £19

Tue 28 Feb, 7pm-10pm

Dancer – UK premiere plus live performance by Sergei Polunin

Dogwoof proudly presents the UK premiere of Dancer, followed by a Q&A and live performance by Sergei Polunin, brought to the big screen live via satellite on Thursday 2 March ahead of the film’s release on Friday 10 March.
Broadcast live from the London Palladium, this exclusive event will connect Sergei Polunin with his existing fans as well as introducing him to a brand new fanbase, up close and personal from the best seats in the house!

Cinema, £17.50, Conc £16.50

Thur 2 Mar, 6.30pm-8.30pm

Hip Hop Masterclass - Baanji
Hip Hop Masterclass with Baanji Muteto, Blanc Canvas Dance

Blanc Canvas Dance’s workshops bring high quality Hip Hop dance every time. Ensuring participants have an enjoyable and educational experience, whether it’s learning company choreography, creative workshops or learning hip hop techniques. BC puts musicality, performance and education at the forefront of every workshop.

Bracknell Gallery, £5, Age 8+

Sat 25 Mar, 12.30pm-1.30pm

Contemporary Masterclass - Edifice
Contemporary Partnering Masterclass with Edifice Dance Theatre

EDIFICE Dance Theatre is a dance collective with its own hybrid movement language that combines different partnering techniques, primarily contact improvisation and ballroom dance. The session will improve partnering skills, stimulate creativity when working with partners alongside learning professional company repertoire. Dancers must have previous contemporary experience.

Bracknell Gallery, £5, Age 13+

Sat 25 Mar, 14.30pm-15.30pm

Caribbean Crush masterclass - Niquelle
Caribbean Crush Masterclass with Niquelle LaTouche

A cultural exchange celebrating the freedom of expression. Improve technique, groove and performance while celebrating individuality! Learn steps derived from the Afro-Caribbean diaspora and apply a fusion of Dancehall, African, Soca, Hiphop & Commercial foundations in an uptempo routine.

Bracknell Gallery, £5, Age 10+

Sat 25 Mar, 16.15pm-17.15pm

Youth Galas
Youth & Community Gala 1

Groups performing on Saturday 25th are OFLAC, Kobika Dance Senior Company, Basement Dance Academy, KJ Theatre Arts, Royal Steps Dance Crew – Dance Inspired, The Laura Henderson Dance Company, The Olivia Dance Academy, ICAB, Illume by Nocturn, Ilusion Flamenca, The Church of Dance, Kingston College, Niquelle LaTouche Arts, Strode’s College, Dancayers Company & Youth, Ascot Heath Junior School, The Henley College, Vanquish Entertainment Company, Berkshire County Dance Company Youth (BCDCY) and a performance by professional company Edifice Theatre.

Wilde Theatre, £12.50, Conc £10

Sat 25 March, 7.30pm

Street Dance - Dan Little
Street Dance Masterclass with Vanquish Entertainment Company

Join the Vanquish team for this energetic and creative Street Dance masterclass, learning some powerful street dance moves that are the signature of the Vanquish brand.

Dance Studio, £5, Age 8+

Sun 26 Mar, 12.30pm-13.30pm

Contemporary Masterclass - Jordan Bridge Credit Pari Naderi
Contemporary Technique Masterclass with Jordan Bridge

Ex-Tavaziva Dance Company and current Michael Clark Company dancer Jordan will share his passion and experience as a contemporary dancer during this masterclass, consisting of a series of exercises and phrases created to develop Cunningham & Release technique.

Dance Studio, £5, Age 12+

Sun 26 Mar, 15.15pm-16.15pm

Ballet Masterclass - Desiree
Ballet Masterclass with Désirée Ballantyne Grove

Ex-English National Ballet and current Michael Clark Company dancer Désirée will lead an inspiring ballet technique masterclass, looking at the fundamentals that underpin a great dance technique. Dancers must have basic Ballet experience.

Dance Studio, £5, Age 12+

Sun 26 Mar, 16.20pm-17.20pm

Youth & Community Gala 2

Groups performing on Sunday 26th are Tuffney Performing Arts Academy, Reddam House Dance Company, Lafour Theatre School, St Michael’s Easthampstead, Quicksilver, Queen Anne’s School Twilight Dance Company, Watkins Dance Associates, Brakenhale Dance Company, Scatter – The Place, Zambezi Apex, Classical Ballet Centre Surrey, Hip Hop Replacements, Senior West Berkshire Youth Dance Company, Drishti Dance, Jawahir, Yately School, Vanquish Entertainment Youth and Minis, Hampshire Youth Dance Company, Berkshire County Dance Company Youth (BCDCY) professional performances from performers and choreographers Jordan Bridge and Désirée Ballantyne-Grove.

Wilde Theatre, £12.50, Conc £10

Sun 26 March, 7.30pm

Incognito flamenco
Mi Flamenco – Incognito

Flamenco is an international flamenco company with artists of the highest calibre, bringing quality, and entertaining performance to UK audiences and beyond. Their new creation, Incognito, is a show with all the spirit of authentic, pulsating flamenco, intertwined with the unexpected.

Exciting, moving flamenco dance, powerful song, virtuoso guitar and cello, with lots of charm, imagination and theatre thrown in.

A passionate spectacle for dance, music and theatre-lovers everywhere.

Wilde Theatre. £16, Conc £14.50

Thu 30 March 8pm-9.30pm

ROH Ballet: Jewels

Now celebrating its 50th year, George Balanchine’s sparkling ballet still shines with all the brilliance of the gemstones that inspired it.

Cinema, £20, Conc £19

Tue 11 April 7.15pm – 9.45pm

The Australian Ballet: Coppelia

The Fairy Tale Series.

Swanilda and Franz are in love… until a beautiful stranger appears in town. But Dr Coppelius’ haughty daughter is not what she seems, and Swanilda must rescue Franz from the magician’s sinister doll-filled lair – with the help of some fancy footwork!

Cinema, £16.50, Conc £15.50

Wed 19 April: 7.45pm – 10pm


Jasmin Vardimon Company – Pinnochio

Jasmin Vardimon Company presents a brand new adaptation of the classic tale, Pinocchio. Based on the original book by Collodi and performed by Vardimon’s multi-talented dancers, Pinocchio will bring to life the famous marionette as he embarks on a fantastic journey to become a human boy.


Wilde Theatre, £13.50, Conc £12.50

Wed 26 – Thur 27 April, 7.30pm

Lift Off Dance Festival 2018

If you would like more information on participating in the 2018 festival please either complete the form below or email Lena Dee directly.

Please check back to this page for updates as the 2018 program is finalised.