Dance Saves Lives!

Five stories on the power of dance.


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Helen Lewis survived the winter of 1944 in a concentration camp because she could dance.

With poet Michael Longley, her neighbour in Belfast.

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Antonia Franceschi was the ballet star in Fame, the movie.

But her real life on Manhatten's streets was violent and neglected.

With Patsy Rodenburg, Head of Voice at the National Theatre, with whom Antonia is developing ways of telling her story.

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is a Rwandan group of youngsters from all three tribes for whom dance has brought on an astonishing journey out of Africa and back again.

With young British aid worker Boris Hunka and music producer Chris Redmond.


Dave Toole's legs stopped growing when he was an infant.

So he moves about on his hands or in a wheelchair.

He had been a post office worker, feeling a bit hopeless, for many years, when he attended the final day of a movement workshop in Leeds with the integrated dance company, Candoco.

Celeste Dandeker (who co-founded Candoco after a paralysing fall on stage when she was with London Contemporary Dance Theatre) and David describe his journey from sorting the mail to international touring.

He is currently on tour with the major physical theatre group DV8.

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Andrew O'hagan, the Booker nominated writer, was a scholarship student with Scottish ballet.

It was his first way into peace and quiet.

Philip Moseley, who went from South Yorkshire to the Royal Ballet, was inspirational to the writer, Lee Hall, author of Billy Elliot.

They talk about what really happens to working class ballet boys.