Chester Cathedral is delighted to welcome Claire Henderson Davis, contemporary dancer/ choreographer and theologian, to a three-year residency at the Cathedral. Claire frequently brings together professional and non-professional community performers in her work.
The idea for this residency began earlier this year when, in March, the Cathedral hosted a performance of Passion, a contemporary re-imagining of the passion story in dance, poetry and music, created, directed and performed in by Claire. The Chester stop was part of a highly successful UK-wide Cathedral tour, which finished at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival in August, where it was filmed. The film, supported by St Paul’s Cathedral, London, York Minster, Christ Church, Oxford and Portsmouth Cathedrals is due for release in time for Lent 2016.
Claire is a liturgical theologian, using her performance skills and experience to develop contemporary liturgical spaces that bring people into engagement with the Christian narrative outside traditional liturgical structures, while remaining deeply connected to the tradition.
Rowan Williams, former Archbishop of Canterbury and now Master of Magdalene College, Cambridge, who first became aware of her work when she led a major community project in Soho in 2004/5, and who has since become a committed supporter, writes:
The distinctive and deeply moving quality of Claire’s work is that she is able to animate a liturgical drama that actually builds on where people are and what they say in a way that is transforming for everyone involved…Her work is just about unique in the UK at the moment, and it is doing something groundbreaking; it deserves every possible support.
Clare is here to engage with the life of the Cathedral and to make work that emerges from that engagement. You can find out more about Claire’s work on her website at www.clairehendersondavis.com and more about the recent Passion tour at www.passiontour.org.