I recently returned from a trip to the uk (June 09) and had the good fortune to see two excellent examples of older adults performing. This is now no longer becoming unusual but in the past 5 or 6 years seems to be a growing movement. The first example was a wonderful BBC programme in the Imagine series about a Sadlers Well's project and the second was the Belgian Les Ballets C de la B showing how wonderful a dance company can be when its dancers are not uniform in size shape or age.
Company of Elders
"An inspirational group of amateur performers all over the age of 60, the Company of Elders are the jewel in the crown of Sadler’s Wells’ Connect department and an off shoot of the theatre’s arts appreciation club. Fulfilling the theatre’s commitment to the local community and to making dance as accessible as possible, Connect’s work includes all abilities and ages spanning 0 to 90, challenging perceptions of who can and should dance." (Dance UK - the national voice for dance)
They recently were the feature of a BBC documentary hosted by Alan Yentob which aroused much public interest. It showed the Company working creatively on a contemporary dance piece with Choreographer Chris Tudor.
"Challenging pre-conceptions about the physical and creative abilities of the over 60s, the film follows the company in their quest to choreograph, learn, practice and perform a brand new work."
See the Dance UK link:
Les Ballets C de la B
Les Ballets C de la B, an internationally renowned and popular contemporary dance company performed their wonderful new work "Ashes" by choreographer Koen Augustijnen, at Southbank in London, as part of a current European festival tour.
Excerpts can be seen on U Tube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pyQrK_Q2HOo
A leading contemporary dance company they also excite because their company contains dancers of all shapes sizes cultures and ages, with dancers clearly in their 40's and maybe 50's, perfoming not only with strength and stamina but also the depth and richness that comes from maturity.