Open Call

Deadline extended to 17 April

Step Up Dance Project 2020 continues to bridge the gap between dance education and professional contemporary dance practice in Ireland. Step Up is curated by Irish born, Marguerite Donlon, International choreographer. She is the Artistic Ballet director and resident choreographer of Ballet Hagen at Theater Hagen. She is also the founder and director of Donlon Dance Collective based in Berlin.

Step Up aims to enhance young dancers’ professional networks, by connecting them to the Irish and international contemporary dance community, thereby improving professional opportunities for young dancers in Ireland and abroad. The eight week programme is open to dancers who have completed their professional training within the last three years and participants will be selected via audition on 10 April.  

This year’s eight-week programme combines:

- Creation of new works with leading choreographers (Oona Doherty, Lucyna Zwolinska)  
- Working on specific technical skills from a renowned improvisation teacher (Prof Dieter Heitkamp
- Learning repertoire from a former dancer with renowned international companies (Ursula Robb)
- Classes and rehearsals with a renowned ballet master (Eoin Mac Donncha) and guest teachers (Lucia Kickham, Maria O’Malley, Laura Mackin)
- Personal and professional coaching (Rivca Rubin)

- Meeting key personnel within the dance field in Ireland 
- Meeting Step Up Alumni to hear their experiences since participating in Step Up 
- Workshop facilitated by Jenny Traynor of Dance Limerick emphasising self-empowerment, tips and guidance on presenting yourself professionally, online and in approaches to dance companies, programmers and funders.
- Performances in Limerick, Galway, Cork and Longford

Time frame / Key Dates  

The full training / rehearsal / performance period runs from Monday 6 July – Saturday 29 August, using state of the art studios and facilities at the Irish World Academy of Music and Dance at University of Limerick initially, and then at Dance Limerick, before performing in Limerick, Galway, Longford, Cork and Dublin. 

Terms & Conditions 

Rehearsals will take place 10.00 – 6.00 pm Monday to Saturday for the duration of the rehearsal period. Some additional hours in the evening or on Sunday will be required, at the discretion of the choreographers. 

A full scholarship on the programme includes: 

- Accommodation on campus at UL, and subsequently in artist-friendly houses in the city for the second period of rehearsals. 
- Tour accommodation and tour travel as required, will be arranged and paid for by Step Up.  
- A weekly stipend will be paid toward day to day living costs

Participants must be available on an exclusive basis for the full programme  

What’s Not Covered 

- Travel Expenses to and from Ireland / Limerick 
- Health Insurance 
- Visa Costs (if applicable) 

How to Apply

We are seeking applications from exceptional young dancers who will graduate prior to Summer 2020 or who have graduated from professional level dance training within the past three years.

Please send your CV and a personal statement describing why you would like to be involved in Step Up and confirming your availability for the full programme which runs Monday 6 July to Saturday 29 August 2020.

Applicants should send web links of recent live dance footage, on stage or in studio to include: 

- An excerpt of a dance solo
- An excerpt of improv

Closing Date 

Applications should be submitted via email by 5pm Friday 17 April to with

Step Up Application in the subject line.   

Next Steps 

A shortlist of applicants will be invited to an audition in mid June, date TBC. Up to eight  dancers will be selected from audition to take part in the Step Up 2020 programme and letters of offer will be sent in the week immediately following the audition.

Queries on the application / process can be addressed to Jenny Traynor, Programme Director at  

Step Up Dance Programme is a partnership between Dance Limerick, Dance Ireland, the Irish World Academy for Music and Dance at the University of Limerick and the Arts Council.

Download Open Call Info here

Step Up dance project 2019. Photo by Don Moloney.


Dance Limerick, 1 & 2 John's Square, Limerick

Tel: 061 400994

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© 2019 by Dance Limerick.