One of the most important reasons for StopGAP's success in recent years has been the phenomenal talent, energy, hard work and raw creativity of our collaborating choreographers.
Finding the right mix of dance styles is vital when putting together a touring repertoire, and nowhere has that been more important than in the construction of Portfolio Collection – we sought to find the perfect mix of choreographers and choreographic styles that would be both diverse and complementary and would take the dancers to their next level.
Hofesh graduated from the Jerusalem Academy for Dance and Music before joining the Batsheva Dance Company. In order to develop his significant interest in music and rhythm, Hofesh also began drum and percussion studies in Tel-Aviv, continued later in Paris at Agostiny College of Rhythm where he began experimenting and developing his own music which included body-percussion.He participated in various dance and theatre projects in Europe before moving to the UK in 2002 to join the Jasmin Vardimon Dance Company.His choreographic debut 'Fragments' (for which he also created the score) toured the UK, Finland, Italy, Portugal, Switzerland, Korea, New York and Poland, where the piece won 1st place in the 3rd 'Serge Diaghilev Choreography Competition.In 2004 Hofesh was commissioned by The Place Prize for which he created 'Cult'. The work was selected as one of five finalists, ultimately winning the Audience Choice Award.Hofesh went on to create new pieces for Bare Bones Company and Edge – the postgraduate company of 'London Contemporary Dance School. Other commissions included 'Northern School of Contemporary Dance and Ballet CeDeCe in Portugal.In 2006 Hofesh worked as choreographer for 'Motortown' by Simon Stephens which premiered at The Royal Court Theatre in May.In June 2006 he premiered 'Uprising', a commission by the Robin Howard Foundation at London's The Place, and throughout Autumn and into Spring 2007, toured the UK and Europe with 'deGENERATION' – a triple-bill featuring both 'Cult' and 'Uprising'.Prior to working with StopGAP, his latest commission was a collaboration between The Place, the Southbank Centre and Sadler's Wells called 'In Your Rooms' which features 11 dancers and live music, and was performed at all three venues in 2007.
Originally from the former coal-mining city of Barnsley, Gary trained at the Electric Theatre Studios and the Northern School of Contemporary Dance.At the age of 18, he was the first young performer to receive the Brian Glover Memorial Award for 'Outstanding Achievement in Performing Arts and Dance'.Gary spent the next 6 years as a member of Lea Anderson's The Cholmondeleys and The Featherstonehaughs and also danced with Adventures in Motion Pictures, Retina Dance Company, Javier de Frutos, Bock and Vincenzi, Phoenix Dance Company, Maresa Von Stockert's Tilted Co, Nigel Charnock and The Felix Ruckert Company. He has created works for Ascendance REP, Northern School of Contemporary Dance and Corridor Arts.In August 2004 Gary became Artistic Director of Pit Fleur Company and also received the 'Artist Development Award' from Danceworks UK.
Thomas trained at the school of Marcel Marceau in Paris and has been involved in ongoing dance research for 25 years, teaching for over 20 years in countries all over Europe, USA and South America.As an actor, Thomas has performed in such productions as 'The Orchestra' and 'Piaf' in London and 'La Cantatrice Chauve' in Paris – but he eventually returned to Switzerland in 1995 to actively work with the emerging independent theatre/dance scene.In 1996 he co-founded on.off Werkstatt, a centre for research, studies, exchange and creation with international guest teachers in Bern.The next 10 years saw intense research and collaborative development which led to a series of work including 7 full-evening pieces, in addition to numerous solo projects.In 2004 he initiated '5 Men Dancing: a night of improv' – a collective of Europe's finest dance improvisers which was performed at The Place in London and at Dampfzentrale in Bern as part of the 'Friends From Out of Town' festival co-created by on.off Werkstatt.In 2005 Thomas created and directed 'About Life and Death' – a six week physical theatre performance project involving dancers/actors from 7 nations.Thomas premiered another improvised dance piece at Festival Heimspiel in February 2007 entitled 'Jezt und Genau So' (Now and Exactly Like This) performed by 7 dancers with striking physical differences.Thomas is currently working on a duet with the blind dancer Sylvie Raphoz to be premiered in 2008 at the Festival DanseHabile in Geneva.
Nathalie is a French choreographer who dances in her own work. She first trained in classical and modern dance with Yolande Marlzoff, a former dancer with the Strasbourg Opera, before attending Institute diruge par Françoise et Dominque Dupuy.As a dancer, Nathalie worked from 1985 to 1987 with choreographer Marie-France Delieuvin. She also performed in works by José Montalvo from 1986 to 1989.In 1989 she teamed up with Andréas Schmid to form Compagnie Schmid-Pernette, which showcased their choreographic skills and created 8 works over 12 years, including: 'Les Ombres Portées' in 1989; 'Le Frisson d'Alice' in 1992; 'Le Mur Palimpseste' in 1993; 'Verba Volant' in 1994; 'Le Savon' in 1996; 'Le Sacre du Printemps' and 'Reliefs' in 1999; and 'Suites' in 2001.The company regularly toured France and also performed in Japan, Canada, Belarus and the UK.Nathalie then set up Companie Pernette in 2001 to showcase her own work. It has so far created 9 dance pieces: 'Délicieuses', 'Je ne sais pas' and 'A l'ombre d'un doute' in 2002; 'Le Nid' in 2003; 'Jardin et délices' and 'Je ne sais pas, un Jour…' in 2004; 'La Flúte Enchantée' and 'Les Naufragées' in 2005; and 'Le Cabarnet Martien' in 2006.Nathalie is an Associate Artist of the Centre Nationale de la Danse in Pantin, Paris.
Rob came to Europe from Australia in 1993. He joined Alias Compagnie in Switzerland before becoming a core member of UK-based DV8 Physical Theatre. It was there he met Liam Steel and together founded Stan Won't Dance in 2004 as a result of their shared vision of expanding the boundaries of physical theatre, new writing and visual imagery by creating theatre pieces that fully integrate movement, design, music and text.Stan Won't Dance are current Artists in Residence at the South Bank Centre, London, and The Lowry, Salford.The company's first production 'SINNER', premiered in the UK in 2004 to great critical and public acclaim. It went on to tour the UK, USA and Canada, gaining a nomination for the prestigious Toronto Tapa Dora Award.In 2005-06 Rob also worked as Associate Choreographer for the original stage version of 'Lord of the Rings', which premiered in Toronto and won a 2006 Dora Maver Moore Award for Choreography.Choreography/Direction credits include: 'Fetish: Stories' at City Hall Theatre, Hong Kong and 'Intent' at the Royal Festival Hall, London in 2003; 'Apparition' international tour in 2004 with Klaus Obermaier; and 'Take Action: Stunt Dancing' at the Royal Festival Hall, London in 2005.Screen credits include: 'Enter Achilles' (DV8 Physical Theatre, 1996 winner International Emmy) and 'Stig of the Dump' (BBC, 2001 winner International Emmy).