Invisible Dances Workshop Shetland

Invisible Dances: Art in and around Lockdown

5th September


St Ninians Beach / Bigton Hall


Would you like to participate in a creative workshop around the global, yet secret, art project Invisible Dances?

Since September 2020, the ‘Invisible Dances have quietly been creating a storm’ (Arts UK, 2021), with over 50 performances in 14 countries – and now it’s time to bring them to Shetland! But what lies behind the mysterious concept?

Elisabeth Schilling, the initiator of this international undertaking, which is inspired by and respects all local sanitary guidelines, is delighted to offer you the opportunity to take part in an inter-generational and interdisciplinary art workshop to introduce this unusual art project. Designed and developed by Elisabeth herself and led by local artists Kathryn Gordon and Tony Humbleyard, the workshop will fuse dance, visual art, individual creativity and collective reflection in a playful and accessible manner.

The workshop aims to introduce diverse creative ways to interact with the dance piece Invisible Dances: through drawings, through a guided walk and even dancing on the lines remaining from the performance; also through discussion, reflection and exchange. A special highlight of this playful and creative workshop would be the chance to choreograph, dance and trace your very own Invisible Dance with another member of the community. Whilst you would be guided around the Invisible Dance’s art work in your respective locality, the workshop will also give you a glimpse into the diverse artistic expressions of the score, and how it has been interpreted across the world during the Covid pandemic. We hope this will connect local audiences to each other, as well as to the global community of Invisible Dancers.

The Invisible Dances Workshop will take place on 5th September at 3pm – 4.30 pm at St. Ninians Beach / Bigton Hall, Bigton, Shetland ZE2 9JF (tbc depending on weather on the day) on The Mainland, Shetland. It will be free of charge. Ages 6-99+ are welcome. Children under 12 have to be accompanied by an adult.

While dance experience is not necessary, the workshop does include an invitation to move physically, so a willingness to do so would be preferable. Participants should also bring a pen and paper to the workshop.

Enrolment required as limited places are available. Please send an e-mail with name and contact details to David Lawson – by September 4th 2021.

The Invisible Dances is a global initiative inspired by the restrictions put upon theatres and cultural workers during the Covid-19 crisis. Respecting all local sanitary guidelines, the concept invites dance artists to meet for an unannounced performance at night. They make their way dancing through the city followed by so-called tracers who visualise the dance with natural materials or environmentally friendly and biodegradable chalk spray that washes away with the next rain.

In the morning after the dance has taken place, the cities and streets are clad in colour for the public to enjoy, to dance along and imagine the dances no-one has seen. A workshop or spontaneous encounter” will take place while the traces of the performance are still clearly visible, yet at a time of your choosing. However, when will the traces appear? Where will they manifest themselves close to your community? If you look hard enough, you might just find an Invisible Dance near you!

To find out more about the Invisible Dances, please visit:

Images: Joshua Sailo / Matthew Sailo