Springback is an octopus. A European contemporary dance octopus.
Seriously. You know that octopuses have one central brain and another one in each tentacle? That they have several hearts? That their blood is blue? Springback is just the same (not the blood part.) It hatched in 2015 at Springback Academy, a practical, mentored programme for dance writers resident in Europe, launched in 2015. Its niche is not making or presenting dance, but communicating it.
That little creature has now grown several arms, including this online Magazine (launched in 2018), with a specially printed Annual, a yearly Assembly that hosts live encounters between writers and a local scene, and miscellaneous partnerships to present talks and workshops.
At heart, Springback has several principles, related to the discourses around contemporary dance in Europe. That it is worth cultivating open, accessible and critical dance writing as old media die out. That dance communication can be lively, engaging and yes, enjoyable (octopuses are smart as well as cute). That criticism, contemplation and creativity work better together than apart.
Springback reaches and responds to contemporary dance in Europe – with brains, with arms, with hearts.
We focus (though not exclusively) on the free, independent and alternative scenes in contemporary European dance. Instead of pursuing the mainstream, this allows us to track many streams of dance practice, performance and thought, embracing the radical, the grassroots, the current, the crazy and the creative. Together, they form a composite picture of European dance today.
In an era of online ephemera and informational overproduction, we also place a premium on hands-on editorial guidance for our contributors – for the benefit of the contributors, the magazine and ultimately our readers.
All our contributors come through our annual Springback Academy writing programme.