The 2015 Dublin Dance Festival features new international talent, world premieres, hip-hop in Smithfield Square and even stand-up comedy.

Last year the Dublin Dance Festival was a decade old, and the leading dance event in Ireland returns this May with top dance artists and leading choreographers to entertain and educate Dublin audiences.

The festival was founded with the aim of giving Irish choreographers a platform to develop their work in an international context, to premiere new Irish works and bring dancers and choreographers together. It also aims to showcase both Irish and international, emerging and established contemporary dance talent to a new audience.

The DDF also wants to help us understand dance or, at least, to not fear it: Dance Uncovered…(sensational) by Philip Connaughton aims to show the audience a way through the dance with elements of stand-up comedy – and some serious points too. Emma O’Kane’s Jockey explores the Irish connection with horse racing and the similarities between a jockey and a dancer’s life.

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The Abbey Theatre has partnered with Dublin Dance Festival to bring a range of works to the Dublin stage for a full fortnight: Meg Stuart / Damaged Goods open the festival with Built to Last at the Abbey Theatre 19-20 May. The Liz Roche Company presents its new work, Bastard Amber, and Flamenco star Israel Galvan (pictured above) takes to the Abbey stage with his hit show La Edad De Oro, on the 28-30 May – it’s tipped to be the hot-ticket of the festival.

DDF is also making the most of the outdoors, with a programme of free events taking place outside – these events are free and no ticket is required. Bodies That Can Never Tire is a day long dance marathon taking place on Henry Street, in honour of Yeats’ 150th anniversary, inspired by his line: “That he follow with desire / Bodies that can never tire.” The Dublin Youth Dance Company also takes dance outdoors at Grand Canal Square, there’s hip-hop in Smithfield Square, and Thomas Hauert makes the Bray Prom’ his stage.

The programme features both well-known dance classics and new forms of dance. There are also workshops, film symposia, master classes and discussion running alongside the dance schedule. Family friendly events will take place at The Ark.

Dublin Dance Festival runs from 19th to 30th May, 2015 at various venues throughout the city. For the full programme visit the festival website.

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All images courtesy Dublin Dance Festival; lead image © Eva Würdinger; photo of Israel Galván © Luis Castilla Fotografia

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