O'Driscoll Collective

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Founder(s): Jamaal O’Driscoll
Started: September 2019
Degree/University: BSc Sports and Exercise Science (University of Gloucestershire, 2017)
Sector: Arts // Community Outreach
Highlights So Far: Seeing young people in their workshops having fun and interacting through dance.

A national dance collective teaching an outreach programme, workshops and performances in schools and community spaces.

O’Driscoll Collective’s mission is to engage individuals of all ages through dance and movement, with three strands – Outreach, Performance and Workshops. The collective has a passion for sharing the benefits that dance can provide with the community in a variety of settings.

Founder and Artistic Director Jamaal O’Driscoll has been a part of the dance community since 2010, practicing a variety of dance styles, and developing a strong technique within the hip-hop style of breaking. He is also Participation Producer for Birmingham International Dance Festival and judges and competes in competitions nationally and internationally.

His strong passion for dance and desire to inspire the next generation/wider community sparked an idea to create an organisation that could bring these three elements together.

Armed with a strong background in the arts but needing to reach more people, Jamaal joined BSEEN to work on the business side of the organisation (such as finance, marketing and branding), which he’d previously not had as much experience in.

“The life of a director can sometimes feel isolated and confusing. BSEEN allowed me to build networks and communication with people outside my industry but on a similar path and focus.”

In its first active year, O’Driscoll Collective has delivered a number of successful youth outreach programmes, such as ‘Break-Out’ with Birmingham’s DanceXchange; a multi-week experience encouraging a positive relationship between young people and dance, focused on the style of breakin’ within hip-hop dance. As well as specially commissioned dance performances, the company has also delivered workshops in collaborations with organisations such as the West Midlands Police and the Midlands Arts Centre.

Jamaal’s next steps with the business are to continue to expand on their current work to create conversations with more people using dance and movement in a creative way, as well as collaborating with more organisations, charities and schools.

“I’m sure you will have what you perceive as ‘failure’ on the way but you never know till you try. I personally have failed many times but now I am able to share what I’ve learnt through travelling, competing, conversation, performance and the support from others”.

Jamaal O'Driscoll

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