An international experience

Fred Deb’, Founder of the LRDA, has been teaching aerial dance worldwide for many years.

– It all started with the Aerial Dance Festival (ADF) in Boulder, Colorado (USA, 2005 – 2008): Fred Deb’ was the first French-speaking aerial fabric teacher trained in contemporary circus to be invited to this festival. For four consecutive summers, Fred and Jacques Bertrand, spent the month of August teaching in this unique event which every year brings together the largest number of aerial professionals and amateurs on the American continent.  There, she was able to connect to a large network of English-speaking aerialists.   She taught aerial fabric technique classes as well as a performance research workshop (a « lab »).  She offered rotating hoop classes.  Additionally, she gave specific act development classes (technical and artistic analysis from video) to professionals seeking to further develop their work.

– In Boulder in 2006, Fred Deb’ met Chantal McCormick, the artistic director and founder of the Irish circus and street performance company FidgetFeet. Chantal McCormick was trained as a dancer (London Contemporary Dance School) as wella s an aerialist, and she invited Fred Deb’ to teach at the first Aerial Dance Forum that she organized in Newcastle in October 2007. Fred Deb’ and Jacques Bertrand taught many classes: floor work (warm-up, stretching…), aerial fabric and hoop technique, and a lab (improvisation and experimentation on aerial objects), as well as dance.

Chantal McCormick and Fred Deb’ found they had many ideas and interests for developing aerial teaching and training in common.  Chantal invited Fred to share her knowledge in circus arts in Ireland. Fred Deb’ taught aerial fabric in Cork and in Dublin in workshops held in 2008.

Then, another meeting, this time with Lindsey Butcher, founder and artistic director of the English company Gravity&Levity, brought a new voice to the discussions of the development of structured education in aerial disciplines in Europe.  From these conversations, the three had the idea for each of them to develop and aerial dance festival in their country, putting their pedagogical ideas to work, exchanging teaching practices, and establishing an European aerial dance network :

– Irish Aerial dance Fest IADF, organized by the company FidgetFeet, has taken place every June since 2010 in Letterkenny, co Donegal, IrelandFred Deb’ and Jacques Bertrand participated from 2010- 2012 as aerial fabric teachers in the festival, consolidating pedagogical exchanges with Ireland.

– European Aerial Dance Festival EADF, organized by the company Gravity&Levity, has taken place every August since 2010 in Brighton, England. From 2010-2013, Fred Deb’ and Jacques Bertrand taught there.  They have a strong reputation as aerial specialists in Great Britain, known for quality technical training taught with enthousiasm.  In 2013, the first Paralympic Aerial Legacy Intensive PALI was held in conjunction with the festival, held at Circus Space. Fred Deb’ was invited to teach, and discovered the passionate inspiration in movement research with disabled artists and athletes.  A video recap of the 2013 workshop can be found in a link at the base of this page,

– The Aerial Dance Encounters LRDA, organized by the company Drapés Aériens, has taken place every July since 2009 in La Baule 44, France.

– Fred Deb’ teaches regularly at the circus school l’ACaPA, in Tilburg, Nethlerlands, under the pedagogical direction of Samuel Jornot. Elle works with future circus artists as an invited guest teacher, responsible for coaching « vertical » aerial disciplines.  She has been involved in this teaching project and human adventure since 2009.

– Since 2006, Drapés Aériens has been building strong connections with Costa Rica through many exchange trips and international cooperation.  In September 2009, Fred Deb’ and Jacques Bertrand participated in a teacher training program in San José, with the larger plan of creating a circus school in the capital.  They worked to train future teachers of this planned school  The training project had two components: technical training by practicing basic teaching principles (warm-ups, technique classes, and stretching); and theoretical work on safety, specifically rigging safety (physics, calculating resistances, building and rigging circus structures) and injury prevention.  This project was a collaboration of  l’Alliance Française, the Costa Rican Ministry of Youth and Culture and the fondation Parque la Libertad in San José.

– In December 2005, Fred Deb’ was invited to give an aerial fabric workshop to students of the Aerial dance academy in Tokyo, a professional school created by Kumiko Wakaida, who trains Japanese students in circus acrobatics, in dance and in aerial disciplines.


Paralympic Aerial Legacy Intensive
from Morreaux and Gravity & Levity on Vimeo.

European Aerial Dance Festival, Brighton, 2013
from Morreaux and Gravity & Levity on Vimeo.

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