Val Bourne (published 1988)


Bourne talks about the history of the Dance Umbrella festival, beginning with its first performance at Riverside Studios at the ICA London. This 1988 interview marks the 10th anniversary of the Dance Umbrella. In 1988, Bourne was awarded the Excellence in International Dance Award from the British Centre of International Theatre Institute.

Biographical note:
Val Bourne (b. 1938) is a British dancer, arts administrator, and founder of Britain's Dance Umbrella festival. She trained at the Royal Ballet School and performed briefly with the Royal Ballet. She danced with Sadler's Wells Opera Ballet for three years. In 1968 she began working as an arts administrator, first with London Festival Ballet and later with Ballet Rambert. In 1978 she organized the first Dance Umbrella festival, which went on to become the largest festival of contemporary dance in the world. In 1985 she won a 'Bessie' (New York Dance and Performance Award). In March 1990 she received the International Theatre Institute's Award in recognition of her achievements in international dance; also Chevalier dans l'Ordre des Arts et Lettres.






“Val Bourne (published 1988),” Dance Dialogues: Interviews by Barbara Newman, 1979-Present, accessed September 24, 2020,