Preview: Excellent!, Sadler's Wells, London

An excellent adventure for young talent

Through means-tested funding, the Music and Dance Scheme (MDS) offers crucial access to high-level training for exceptionally gifted young people; its current crop of 1,600 11- to 18-year-olds will one day enter a list of alumni which includes the violinist Nigel Kennedy, the dancer Darcey Bussell and the composer Debbie Wiseman.

In celebration of the MDS, and for one night only, Sadler's Wells is set to sparkle with the treasures of the programme. Excellent! offers a cavalcade of compositions, choreography and enticing collaborations which link MDS trainees with some of the best professionals.

"The MDS truly stands for a fantastic opportunity for young people, who couldn't perhaps have afforded individual tuition, to afford it at world-class level," says Nicolas Chisholm, headmaster of the Yehudi Menuhin School in Surrey, one of the many MDS centres nationwide that are participating.

"It's about access and opportunity; I know they're buzzwords, but it's absolutely true. We get applications from people from all walks of life. And from the school's point of view, it ensures our existence. Without it, we wouldn't be able to operate."

Among the array of performances, Chisholm's charges will provide an original live score for a new piece of choreography from the Royal Ballet School, the Place Centre team up with the Royal College of Music for a scintillating site-specific marriage of music and dance, and Dance City Academy partner the Sage Gateshead Weekend School in an enticing collaboration. There are big bands, fanfares, choristers, a "cutlery concerto"; and, the following day, also at Sadler's Wells, a chance to discuss the issues that the MDS throws up.

"I'm looking forward to the variety of it all," says Chisholm, "because it isn't just classical music and classical ballet. We've got south Asian dance, we've got contemporary music and contemporary dance.

"I'm looking forward to seeing a celebration of a scheme that has been a hugely well-kept secret. Potentially, it's going to be absolutely extraordinary."



15-16 July, Sadler's Wells, London EC1, (0844 412 4300), www.excellent.uk.com

Arts and Entertainment

Film Leonardo DiCaprio hunts Tom Hardy

Arts and Entertainment
And now for something completely different: the ‘Sin City’ episode of ‘Casualty’
TV
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment

ebooksNow available in paperback
Arts and Entertainment

ebooks
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
SPONSORED FEATURES

ES Rentals

    Independent Dating
    and  

    By clicking 'Search' you
    are agreeing to our
    Terms of Use.

    Blairites be warned, this could be the moment Labour turns into Syriza

    Andrew Grice: Inside Westminster

    Blairites be warned, this could be the moment Labour turns into Syriza
    HMS Victory: The mystery of Britain's worst naval disaster is finally solved - 271 years later

    The mystery of Britain's worst naval disaster is finally solved - 271 years later

    Exclusive: David Keys reveals the research that finally explains why HMS Victory went down with the loss of 1,100 lives
    Survivors of the Nagasaki atomic bomb attack: Japan must not abandon its post-war pacifism

    'I saw people so injured you couldn't tell if they were dead or alive'

    Nagasaki survivors on why Japan must not abandon its post-war pacifism
    Jon Stewart: The voice of Democrats who felt Obama had failed to deliver on his 'Yes We Can' slogan, and the voter he tried hardest to keep onside

    The voter Obama tried hardest to keep onside

    Outgoing The Daily Show host, Jon Stewart, became the voice of Democrats who felt the President had failed to deliver on his ‘Yes We Can’ slogan. Tim Walker charts the ups and downs of their 10-year relationship on screen
    RuPaul interview: The drag star on being inspired by Bowie, never fitting in, and saying the first thing that comes into your head

    RuPaul interview

    The drag star on being inspired by Bowie, never fitting in, and saying the first thing that comes into your head
    Secrets of comedy couples: What's it like when both you and your partner are stand-ups?

    Secrets of comedy couples

    What's it like when both you and your partner are stand-ups?
    Satya Nadella: As Windows 10 is launched can he return Microsoft to its former glory?

    Satya Nadella: The man to clean up for Windows?

    While Microsoft's founders spend their billions, the once-invincible tech company's new boss is trying to save it
    The best swimwear for men: From trunks to shorts, make a splash this summer

    The best swimwear for men

    From trunks to shorts, make a splash this summer
    Mark Hix recipes: Our chef tries his hand at a spot of summer foraging

    Mark Hix goes summer foraging

     A dinner party doesn't have to mean a trip to the supermarket
    Ashes 2015: With an audacious flourish, home hero Ian Bell ends all debate

    With an audacious flourish, the home hero ends all debate

    Ian Bell advances to Trent Bridge next week almost as undroppable as Alastair Cook and Joe Root, a cornerstone of England's new thinking, says Kevin Garside
    Aaron Ramsey interview: Wales midfielder determined to be centre of attention for Arsenal this season

    Aaron Ramsey interview

    Wales midfielder determined to be centre of attention for Arsenal this season
    Community Shield: Arsene Wenger needs to strike first blow in rivalry with Jose Mourinho

    Community Shield gives Wenger chance to strike first blow in rivalry with Mourinho

    As long as the Arsenal manager's run of games without a win over his Chelsea counterpart continues it will continue to dominate the narrative around the two men
    The unlikely rise of AFC Bournemouth - and what it says about English life

    Unlikely rise of AFC Bournemouth

    Bournemouth’s elevation to football’s top tier is one of the most improbable of recent times. But it’s illustrative of deeper and wider changes in English life
    A Very British Coup, part two: New novel in pipeline as Jeremy Corbyn's rise inspires sequel

    A Very British Coup, part two

    New novel in pipeline as Jeremy Corbyn's rise inspires sequel
    Philae lander data show comets could have brought 'building blocks of life' to Earth

    Philae lander data show comets could have brought 'building blocks of life' to Earth

    Icy dust layer holds organic compounds similar to those found in living organisms