Ballet Cymru have perhaps one of the most inspiring stories of grit and perseverance in the entire landscape of Welsh arts, if not in the whole of the UK. Over thirty years old, run for much of that time as a passion project by founder Darius James and a very small band of itinerant artists, in the last couple of years they have made a new home for themselves in a very impressive studio building on the outskirts of Newport. They have now a national reputation, and it’s one for subverting expectations, of being rooted in, perhaps surprisingly, a working-class ethic. They now have a strong CV of innovative work, eye-catching collaborations with the likes of Cerys Matthews, Georgia Ruth and Catrin Finch, and guest choreographers, not least Tim Podesta who is about to unveil his Shadow Aspect starring Principle Dancer of the Royal Ballet Mara Galeazzi.
Gary Raymond with Darius James and his Assistant Artistic Director and partner Amy Doughty to talk about Shadow Aspect, about the history of Ballet Cymru, that amazing journey, and about all of the amazing ways they give things back to the community.