Hofesh Shechter to guest direct Brighton Festival

Israeli dancemaker Hofesh Shechter will be the guest director of next year’s Brighton Festival, it was announced today.

The choreographer is known for his highly physical dance set to live, atmospheric scores.

Shechter’s eponymous company will perform his new work, Sun, co-commissioned by the Brighton Festival, at the opening of the event on 3 May.

As guest director, Hofesh Shechter follows in the footsteps of visual artist Anish Kapoor (2009), musician Brian Eno (2010), Burmese democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi (2011), actress and human rights campaigner Vanessa Redgrave (2012) and author Michael Rosen (2013) in shaping the festival line-up.

Shechter said: ‘Brighton has a magic to it that no one can explain. Finding a place where one can develop and grow artistically is a delicate thing, an important thing. Brighton Dome and Brighton Festival have been an inspiring, energising and encouraging place for my company and me in the last five years. We’ve enjoyed the buzz, the lightness, energy, and the unexplainable essence of Brighton. We have resided in its cultural heart – Brighton Dome, and the pulsating artistic heart of the Dome is the annual festival. I’m so excited and honoured to have been invited to lead on this inspiring event and I feel a rush of excitement about the ideas I can contribute. To be asked to lead this amazing event in 2014, to be asked to inspire, energise, encourage… well, delighted, is just a boring word.’

Andrew Comben, chief executive of Brighton Dome and Brighton Festival said: ‘We’re very pleased that Hofesh Shechter is our guest director for Brighton Festival 2014. As the artistic director of our resident company Hofesh Shechter Company, it has been exciting for us and our audiences to experience first-hand his ascent to becoming a major force on the international contemporary dance scene.

‘Hofesh’s appointment as guest director continues a trend set by his predecessors – his work and creative vision contains that rare quality and sense of adventure that sparks the imaginations of a much wider audience beyond his own discipline. With such an eclectic artist at the helm, Brighton Festival 2014 is set to be a very exciting one indeed.’