Photo: Karol Wyszynski

The Creative Case for Diversity is an exciting yet potentially complex area for arts organisations. For Balbir Singh Dance Company, the conversation it has sparked is both welcome and timely.

BSDC exemplifies diversity at all stages of its creative process: it is to be found in the creative director’s background and formative experiences; among the company’s collaborators, artists and performers; in the themes explored in its work; and, importantly, in the diversity of audiences which this work attracts.

Yet there are challenges, albeit less obvious ones, that do speak to the need to reflect on the Creative Case at different levels.

BSDC’s experience in 2017 offered a particularly interesting opportunity for this kind of reflection. This prompted Balbir Singh to ask of the company: ‘how can we meet the challenges and where will this take us on our journey?’

The company’s response to this was published in a booklet. Using two case studies as a starting point, the publication explores the main challenges that the company encounters as a culturally diverse maker of work.

It also reflects on the lessons that can be learnt from this experience. Where strengths are identified it proposes ways of building on them. For areas that suggest unmet need, it points to potential solutions that the company feels could be considered – at the organisational, national and international levels.

Download a copy of the booklet here.

We need to ensure funders are part of the discussion on how we can nurture and support our diverse dance traditions, if the lack of home grown classically trained musicians and dancers is to be addressed

Explore the process

A lost art?
A bridge to India
Immersed in music
When Worlds Collide
The Idea (learning to dance)
Natural curiosity and questions (learning to dance)
Composer thoughts on Learning to Dance
In the presence of geniuses
The story (love and spice)
A dancer reflects on The Strategists (1)
Overview of The Strategists
Breakdown of The Strategists
Roundness of 12: a breakdown of the piece
Breakdown of the piece (love and spice)
Script (12)
Painter research
A dancer reflects on Love and Spice
Full Contact – highlights from the script
Dancer notes performance (flatlands)
Peacock Lake – genesis of the concept
Firing up the Mehfil Machine
The Collaborators
Creative Case – challenges along the way
The Guru-Shishya relationship
What is Kathak?
Life blood
Collaboration: Balbir & Gary
Colouring your emotions
Covid-19 Update on Monday, April 6th, 2020
Creative Case in action – July to September 2019
Finding my way in The Creative Spirit of John Curry
Talent Development – Abirami Eshwar
Talent Development – Kimberley Hardy
Collaborators: Lorna Brown and Gary Beacom
The Work: Act 1
The Work: Act 2
Planning the show
The 8 Dances
Who was Hans Krebs?
The Citric 
 Acid cycle
Balbir’s thoughts behind the work
Balbir on developing the work
Amrita Sher-Gil & Frida Kahlo
My favourite painting is. . .
Balbir reflects on The Two Fridas
Cast one
Devising in lockdown
Las dos Fridas
‘Alas Para Volar (Wings to Fly)’
Amrita – a story that lives in Art