Deaf Men Dancing
Deaf Men Dancing is a unique and exciting dance company of all male highly trained professional dancers who are all deaf. DMD first worked together during a two-week workshop in August 2010 and subsequently presented work-in-progress to an audience of invited industry professionals on 13 August 2010. After receiving positive feedback they decided to take DMD further.
Since this showcase, DMD has performed at DanceEast’s 1st Anniversary Gala, E4’s Battlefront, London 2012's Deaf Day, DaDa Disability and Deaf Arts' Hands-On and Candoco's 20th anniversary cabaret. DMD have performed and toured Sense of Freedom at The Place’s Resolution, DaDa South’s Up-Stream Showcase as part of the Brighton Festival, New Wolsey Theatre's Pulse Fringe Festival, City Lit's Deaf Day, Cloud Dance Festival and Clin d'Oeil Deaf Art International Festival in France.
Mark Smith received a commission from Without Walls to direct and choreograph Deaf Men Dancing's outdoor production Alive!, a collaboration with visual artist Rachel Gadsden, produced by Greenwich+Dockland International Festival. Alive! has been performed at the Brighton Festival, Greenwich+Docklands Festival's Dancing City, Stockton International Riverside Festival, Liberty Festival, Watch This Space Festival at the National Theatre, Kendal’s Mintfest's festival Lakes Alive, Bristol’s Habour Festival and Manchester’s XTRAX festival. Amanda Cottrell OBE (Chairperson of Visit Kent) and Jeremy Hunt (Secretary of State for Health), invited DMD to perform Alive! at Canterbury Cathedral to mark the United Nations International Day of Persons with Disabilities and DMD's involvement with the Cultural Olympiad.
DMD’s artistic director and choreographer Mark Smith was one of the three artists selected to develop new work with their creative collaborators in Pavilion Dance South West/GDance/South East Dance’s Integrated ChoreoLab. DMD presented new work at The Integrated Dance Summit in Bournemouth. DMD was commissioned by Greenwich + Dockland International Festival to create TEN which premiered at the Mayor of London’s Liberty Festival 2014 as part of National Paralympic Day.
Mark Smith was invited by Sadler’s Wells Theatre to premiere DMD’s new work Hear! Hear! at =dance, a year- round programme of work featuring some long- standing partners and others new to Sadler’s Wells’ stages. Hear! Hear! was the first time Mark invited a female deaf dancer to perform with male deaf dancers and through this, the new company was formed as DMD+. Mark recently presented a work-in-progress duet performance called The Soundman at Incloodu Festival and at Sadler's Wells Theatre's' Equation with two new deaf male dancers who will be joining DMD+.
DMD is currently on tour with a a collaborative project initiated and led by RCMG called Exceptional & Extraordinary: Unruly bodies and minds in the medical museum. DMD's present Let us tell you a story throughout June 2016 in a range of partner museums.
Photograph by Mikah Smillie
Deaf Men Dancing
Photo by Jonathan M Hughes
Deaf Men Dancing - Sense of Freedom
Choreographer and Artistic Director
Deaf Men Dancing performing Resolution at The Place, 22 January 2011. A full showreel of DMD productions can be viewed on Vimeo.
DMD can deliver dance workshops, post-performance discussions, masterclasses and presentations.
Press Comments & Testimonials
'Deaf Men Dancing is a wonderful and timely idea as it is essential we profile the skills and expertise of the deaf community and are ready for the world to see the work.'
Jenny Sealey, MBE. Director
'Deaf Men Dancing is a wonderfully unique and exciting new edge to dance and signing combined through the physical body, which shares talented, and inspiring new work for all to enjoy and be a part of.'
Stephen Mear, Broadway and West-End award-winning choreographer
'The choreography is reminiscent of sign language as their movements punctuate the lyrics of the music and I can imagine the simpler sections of the dance becoming a dance craze, emulated by fans everywhere.'
Londondance.com – Sam Gauntlett
'Deaf Men Dancing’s choreographer Mark Smith brings sign language to the precisely-directed movement, which adds an intriguing dimension and yet another of the many layers of detail this show has in spades.'
Broadway Baby Review
'DMD’s choreographer Mark Smith’s work isn’t just delightful – it is bold and interesting. His use of sign language in dance creates a new level of meaning that complements the humour and excitement of the piece.'
The London Magazine