Choreographer, Movement Director, Dance Teacher, Workshop Leader and Director, Mark Smith.

The Guildhall Trust is delighted to welcome Mark Smith as the very first patron of its exciting annual Dance competition for schools and colleges, Dance Live!

Following the overwhelming success of the inaugural competition in early 2020, it was recently announced that Dance Live! Portsmouth would go ahead as an online TV format in 2021 with plans to expand the event to new towns and cities across the country and a Studio Edition for dance schools, studios and youth dance companies in 2022.

Embracing an ever-evolving digital world and how this is changing the face of modern performance, Dance Live! sees pupils perform creative dance routines choreographed to the backdrop of a giant digital LED screen, this year in their own school or college settings, which will be brought together and judged in a live streamed final for all to see in early June.

Credible and constructive feedback for young people from a panel of experts who have all worked within the stage industry is an important part of the Dance Live! concept, which will now be led by the new Patron and Head Judge, Mark Smith, following high praise of his role and advice last year.

A Choreographer, Movement Director, Dance Teacher, Workshop Leader and Director, Mark Smith is the Founder and Artistic Director of Deaf Men Dancing, Patron for The Imperial Society of Teachers and Dancing (ISTD) and was nominated as Best Choreographer in the Off-West End Awards and the Broadway World UK Awards for Ace of Clubs, Call Me Madam & Iolanthe and Live Theatre & British Theatre for Tommy.

Mark’s credits include, The Color Purple (Leicester Curve & Birmingham Hippodrome. ‘Best Regional Production’ at the What’s On Stage Theatre Awards), The Last Five Years (Wales Millennium Centre & Tour. Top 10 Regional Productions of 2018 by The Stage & Six of the Best Show from Millennium Wales Centre and Best Director with Angharad Lee for British Theatre Guide Awards), Sasha Regan’s IOLANTHE (The Union Theatre. Wilton Music Hall & UK Tour), TOMMY (UK Tour – Ramps on the Moon), The Paralympic Opening Ceremony (London 2012) and many, many more.

Of his appointment as a Patron for Dance Live! Mark said, “I am delighted to be the first Patron for Dance Live! It was a joy being a judge for the competition at Portsmouth last year and wonderful to see so many amazing talents on stage. I was blown away that they’d worked so hard to create fabulous dance pieces with costumes, lighting, music and LED screen presentation. I am looking forward to being Head Judge again for Dance Live! this year and I can’t wait to be inspired by the next generation of dancers in years to come”.

Schools, Colleges, Teachers and Pupils interested in finding out more about Dance Live! should head to the Dance Live! page where more information, videos and an online brochure can be found. Dance Schools, Studios and Youth Dance companies should head to Dance Live! Studio Edition.

Or contact one of the Dance Live! team at: or 023 9387 0193.

Twitter: @marksmith_prod
Instagram: @marksmithchoreographer

Deaf Men Dancing
Twitter: @DeafMenDancing1
Instagram: @deafmendancing
Facebook Page: Deaf Men Dancing

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