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Sadler’s Wells Global Gala, supported by Bottega Veneta, is going online this year to celebrate the UK’s leading dance house and its international dance community.

Sadler’s Wells Global Gala is a special one-off event, supported by Bottega Veneta, celebrating the UK’s leading dance house and its international dance community – something which is just so important right now.

As this challenging and unprecedented year draws to a close, Sadler’s Wells brings together a group of some of its most talented artists, collaborators, and fans from all over the world, for its first ever virtual fundraising gala.

Taking place on Saturday 5 December at 7:30 pm GMT, this specially curated online showcase will feature bespoke performances, sketches, and messages from Sadler’s Wells global family of artists and friends.

After a difficult year for artists, audiences, and organisations around the world, the Global Gala is set to celebrate the joy and beauty of dance, while raising funds that will support the future full reopening of Sadler’s Wells, following the longest period of closure in its 300-year history. The Gala will reflect on this extraordinary year and speak to why it’s especially important to keep celebrating and promoting dance at this time. Because, if ever there was a time to support the arts, it’s right here and now.

The hour-long programme is free to access online via Sadler’s Wells YouTube channel, and will include opportunities for audiences to donate. All funds raised through the event will be matched and will contribute to the full reopening of Sadler’s Wells theatres and the return of artists and audiences to their spaces.

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Alexander Whitley’s company was meant to perform this year. We just hope they get a slot in 2021. Photo and lead image by Johan Persson.

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The evening features appearances from a diverse and international group of world-leading dancers and choreographers, from household names to breakthrough talent across ballet, contemporary and hip-hop dance styles.

Artists appearing include Carlos Acosta, Nafisah Baba, William Forsythe, Sylvie Guillem, Akram Khan, Jason Kittelberger, Magical Bones, Lukas McFarlane, Natalia Osipova, Alesandra Seutin, Hofesh Shechter, and James Whiteside, alongside companies including Cloud Gate Dance Theatre of Taiwan, Russell Maliphant with National Youth Dance Company, and Soweto Skeleton Movers.

The evening also features appearances and messages of support from Sadler’s Wells ambassadors and friends including acclaimed sculptor Antony Gormley, broadcaster Brenda Emmanus, actor Ophelia Lovibond, composer and saxophonist Soweto Kinch, award-winning actor and director Fiona Shaw, and 17-time Grammy Award-winning artist, Sting.

Alistair Spalding, Artistic Director and Chief Executive of Sadler’s Wells said: ‘2020 has been a challenging year to say the least. In normal circumstances, Sadler’s Wells welcomes over half a million people to our spaces each year, and our artists and audiences are what keep our world turning. For most of 2020, that hasn’t been possible.

“Nonetheless, we remain committed to our mission and continue to strive to make and share dance that inspires us all in new and innovative ways. We wanted to find a moment to come together to celebrate the good things that have been able to happen this year, and the creativity that has been possible, while at the same time, generating support that will help Sadler’s Wells fully reopen in 2021.

“At this time, I think it’s more important than ever that we find ways to celebrate and enjoy dance, and we hope that many of you will join us on the 5 December to do just that.”

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