“We’re in the business of inspiring people. I want to change lives, like my life was changed.”
– Hofesh Shechter
We celebrate and inspire the freedom of the human spirit through dance. We travel the world with our extraordinary company of internationally diverse dancers, breaking boundaries and releasing the visceral power that lies beyond the conscious mind.
We believe that dance has the ability to prod and poke and tap into our deepest emotions; an instinctive, deep-rooted part of ourselves that we rarely access in modern life. We dance to know what it feels like, not just to live, but to be alive.
In all our work, we strive to move ourselves, and our audiences, beyond reason.
Our values are Creativity, Diversity and Dynamism.
We are based in the UK and create our work here and in Europe. Our work can be seen in the UK, major European cities, Canada, USA and beyond.
“I want audiences to be awakened, to experience my work from the gut. Trusting the gut is to me like trusting nature, or God, or a sense of purpose; a source, a spark. Trusting a higher and better force than our limited oppressed cultured minds.”
– Hofesh Shechter
“London’s most vital choreographer”
– TimeOut London
I am driven to create work that speaks the language of the people, of our time, with communication at its heart, and heart as the means of its communication. I want to connect with something raw and real, with the essence of the human spirit – our helplessness and hope – and to awaken people to the possibilities of change.
When my dancers are on stage, they are themselves, without pretence. We aim to cut through layers of artifice to reveal things for what they really are, the raw truth, biting at life. It is that sense of comradeship in life’s battles – the victory of the individual and collective through persistence, against challenge, and oppression – that is my greatest ambition.
I want to truly echo and represent the versatility, diversity and complexity of society, to reflect the multi-perspectives of people’s experiences, and reveal what’s common – through the deep human emotions that we all share. In this, I feel dance has a particularly powerful role; in its ability to harness the undefined, subtle and at times abstract elements of life, transforming them into experiences that connect us all.
It is my wish that the work and the company is a welcoming place that invites each and every person, and for them to be able to see themselves in the work, echoing their experiences in one way or another, and allowing them to grow.
Crossing art forms and boundaries
Music is an essential part of my work; it is its beating heart, its fuel. It creates space and atmosphere. Timelessness. The scale of the visual is matched by epic, multi-layered cinematic soundtracks, often played live. The live band infuses more life, danger and edginess to the performance. Nothing can match the atmosphere of live music.
My work is highly cinematic, moving and flowing its focus between ensemble moments that fill the stage, and intimate private scenes; editing between the individual’s emotion and character in counterpoint to the group. How small the individual is. How influential the individual can be. The tension of our social existence lies in the stretch between existing social orders and the individual’s craving for freedom.
These filmic qualities of my stage work are born from a passion for cinema. I believe that translating dance into the film medium can be extremely powerful – playing with elements that enhance performance – the ability to lead viewers through the space, into details, edits and perspectives less accessible in one medium, teased out in another. There is so much more to discover in the spaces between stage and film, across art and movement, waiting and ready to explode onto the screen. I want to unlock this potential, push the art forms in new directions, open out experiences for audiences, transcend boundaries and offer up new perspectives.
Founded in 2008, Hofesh Shechter Company is a boundary-breaking dance company that produces exceptional work, created by Artistic Director Hofesh Shechter, and plays in cities all around the world.
Hofesh Shechter’s repertoire for the company includes Uprising (2006), In your rooms (2007), The Art of Not Looking Back (2009), Political Mother (2010), Political Mother: The Choreographer’s Cut (2011), Sun (2013), barbarians (2015), Grand Finale (2017) and Double Murder (2021), with SHOW (2018), POLITICAL MOTHER UNPLUGGED (2020) and Contemporary Dance 2.0 (2022) performed by Shechter II, its training and development programme for emerging artists.
The company collaborates on exceptional, world-leading, large-scale stage and film projects including a revival of Hofesh’s production of Gluck’s Orphée et Eurydice at La Scala, Milan (2018), co-directed with John Fulljames; East Wall (2018) at Tower of London, in partnership with East London Dance, Historic Royal Palaces and LIFT; short films – Hofesh Shechter’s Clowns (2018), broadcast on the BBC and POLITICAL MOTHER: The Final Cut (2021); feature films – En Corps (2022); and the major stage production LIGHT: Bach Dances (2021) winner of the FEDORA – VAN CLEEF & ARPELS Prize for Ballet 2020, produced in collaboration with the Royal Danish Opera.
Central to its belief that dance can bring about meaningful change is Shechter Moves, the company’s learning, engagement and development programme. Primarily aimed at young people age 14+, this programme shapes opportunities for everyone to experience the life-enhancing potential of their creativity.
Hofesh Shechter Company is supported with public funding through Arts Council England.
Hofesh Shechter Company benefits from the support of BNP Paribas Foundation for the development of its projects.
Hofesh Shechter is an Associate Artist of Sadler’s Wells, London and Artist-in-Residence of Gauthier Dance (2021-2024). Hofesh Shechter Company is Resident Company of the Brighton Dome.