Barrowland Ballet is one of Scotland’s most exciting and successful contemporary dance companies built around the artistic work of choreographer Natasha Gilmore. The company produces high quality, accessible dance theatre performance, installation and film which are presented nationally and internationally. The work’s themes are delivered with wit and humour, and the insightful observations of human behaviour are rooted in her personal stories.
Barrowland Ballet’s work has gained critical international acclaim performing in festivals and venues across the world. The Gift, commissioned by Capital Theatres, Eden Court and Aberdeen Performing Arts and supported through Creative Scotland, was awarded Best Production for Children and Young People at the Critics Awards for Theatre in Scotland 2023 (CATS). Natasha Gilmore was the UK nomination for the ASSITEJ Award for Excellence 2017 for her work for young audiences including Little Red (7+), Whiteout (12+) Tiger Tale (7+) and Poggle (6 months – 4 years). The company also has a repertoire of intergenerational, short dance films including Loose Leaf Tea, Whiteout, Wolf, Strings and most recently Hoods Off created with and featuring pupils from partner school St Albert’s Primary.
Barrowland Ballet has been recognised for its developing practice in contemporary dance work with and for neuro-diverse audiences and children with complex needs. Collaborating with pupils from Isobel Mair School, Newton Mearns, the company has now created two new sensory shows for young people with complex needs – Playful Tiger and most recently The Unexpected Gift, in partnership with Capital Theatre’s, Edinburgh. Both shows have met with critical acclaim with Playful Tiger performing across the world, including Edinburgh’s International Children’s Festival; ASSITEJ Artistic Gathering, Norway; Baboro Festival, Ireland; and Takeoff Festival, England.
The company’s immersive video installation Family Portrait won The Bobby award for the ‘Best of the Fest’ at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe. Dance films Strings, Wolf, Loose Leaf Tea and Whiteout have screened at various prestigious film festivals with Whiteout becoming an award winner at San Francisco Indie Short Festival 2021, Denton Black Film Festival 2022 and Cinevox Dance Film Festival 2022; Wolf awarded audience attention grabber at Knowbox Festival 2021; and Strings winning the Humanity Award at Utah Dance Film Festival 2022.
Alongside the company’s professional work they produce high quality participatory performance projects; the two are inter-dependent with one inspiring the other. Participatory projects include intergenerational performances Wolves, The River (Commonwealth Festival 2014) and Bunty & Doris. The company also runs Wolf Pack a free, intergenerational company in Glasgow with participants aged 7-80 years old.