With sell out performances of their tented touring production LEXICON at the Biennale International des Arts du Cirque in Marseille, NoFit State have made an impressive start to 2019. Building on this momentum the Cardiff based team are giving their support to developing the UK circus sector with their new Associate Artists programme. A programme that will give back to the community that has been so vital in their progress to date.
With the support of the Fenton Arts Trust, NoFit State are proud to launch their new pilot Associate Artists programme - a new opportunity for artists and companies to collaborate with NoFit State and access their knowledge, expertise and resources to develop their own artistic practice. With NoFit State aspiring to support up to three new artists or companies each year, they hope the programme will bring about a sustained and significant legacy for the sector.
Tom Rack, Artistic Director of NoFit State said: “NoFit State started at a time when there were no circus schools, no circus funding and a cultural vacuum of contemporary circus. These days the landscape is very different although it is just as difficult for young artists and companies to make the transition into making and touring their own work. As the aging pioneers of UK contemporary circus, we want to foster, encourage, support and nurture the next generation, so our art form continues to grow and develop exponentially.”
With potential benefits for selected artists including opportunities to make use of equipment and apparatus, professional mentoring and creative advice from the in-house team, and free use of the organisation’s circus training space in Cardiff, the scheme offers a personalised relationship to best meet each associate’s specific needs moving forward.
A Shared Cultural Vision
Whilst involvement in the programme will be through invitation, NoFit State welcome artists and companies to get in touch and begin a conversation, with artists being selected for the following:
- The quality of their artistic vision
- The interest in their creative aspirations
- The alignment with NoFit State’s own creative and cultural vision
- NoFit State’s capacity and capability to genuinely support their development
Most importantly, the successful artists and companies will embody an ambition that is both exciting and demonstrates a potential benefit for the artistic community as a whole.
Keeping Good Company
In launching the pilot version of this scheme, NoFit State are delighted to announce post-contemporary circus company Company-ish as the first to be invited to join the programme. Mixing the tradition of the touring big top with a fresh and modern approach to circus performance, Company-ish have a desire to inspire and engage with as wide an audience as possible which resonates with NoFit State’s open and accessible values.
Drawing from the experiences of working with some of the country’s top circus acts, Company-ish aspire to progress circus as an art form and reach as many people as possible, without damaging the core principles on which it was built. Moving forwards this collaboration will support the company’s artistic ambitions as they prepare for their September debut with the Big Bagaga Show in Cardiff and London.
Luke Hallgarten, Artistic Director of Company-ish said: “Company-ish started with three friends sitting in a caravan in Newcastle-under-lyme, never could we have imagined the level of support and guidance we would get from NoFit State. Their dedication to supporting our young dream, their company ethos and individual humour mean the world to us.”
Following on from their collaboration with Company-ish, NoFit State are actively seeking further artists and companies to expand their Associate Artists programme, in the hope of creating a long-lasting positive impact on the circus sector for years to come.