Little Big Dance

What is Little Big Dance?

Launched in 2019 by South East Dance, in partnership with DanceEast, Take Art and Yorkshire Dance, Little Big Dance empowers dance artists to develop the specialist skills and experience needed to make captivating and diverse dance work for and with under five-year-old children and their families.

Little Big Dance is changing the face of dance work for younger audiences: bringing dance artists together with children under five, early years specialists and dramaturgs to develop new skills and create new work. 

Over two cycles, Little Big Dance is supporting up to 16 dance artists to receive robust specialist training and development in creating work for young audiences; and commissioning three new pieces of dance work, created by and with under five-year olds for national tour.

The Partners

Take Art are delighted to be working in partnership alongsideSouth East Dance, lead partner in Little Big Dance and an arts charity dedicated to making life better through dance; Dance East, one of the UK's leading dance organisations and Yorkshire Dance, a charity championing the value of dance and development in Yorkshire.

Little Big Dance is funded by Paul Hamlyn Foundation and Arts Council England and also supported by Dance Umbrella, Birmingham Hippodrome, Strike a Light Festival and Imaginate.

Cycle One

In its first cycle, Little Big Dance supported four artists to progress their careers; and commissioned two stunning pieces of work by artists George Fellows and Takeshi Matsumoto, which to date have reached more than 3000 people and continue to tour nationally and internationally.

Cycle Two

In the second cycle of this pioneering programme, 13 artists joined us for an Artist Lab at The Dance Space 16-20 Jan 2023 to receive training and mentoring in developing work for young audiences. 

Artist Xenia Aidonopoulou, who received the £30,000 Little Big Dance Cycle Two commission, has been working with children under five to create and tour Skydiver, a brand new piece of dance work for under five year olds.

Xenia has carried out research and development for the piece with children in nurseries and early years settings in all four Little Big Dance partner locations, including Dance East (Ipswich), Yorkshire Dance (Leeds), Take Art (Somerset) & South East Dance (Brighton).

She will use this research to create the piece at The Dance Space, before sharing it with programmers, producers and venue bookers later this year, and taking it on a national tour from Autumn 2023.

Little Big Dance is changing the face of dance performances for very young audiences, while empowering dance artists and choreographers to push and challenge their practice in new ways. 

Cycle One has seen two beautiful and very different dance works being produced and seen by thousands of people to date. Both pieces are based on original ideas, with children’s voices at the heart, and are the result of robust research and development into how children under five develop and what they need and want to really connect with movement-based shows. 

Cath James, Artistic Director South East Dance, Lead Partner of Little Big Dance

Find out more about Little Big Dance

To find out more about Little Big Dance and the project please visit

Contact Alison Lord, Director of Dance


Twitter: #littlebigdance