Eleesha Drennan is an award winning choreographer & director. Canadian born and based in London, Drennan is passionate about creating theatrical experiences that connect people through laughter and tears. Her work is musically driven, bold and full of nuance.
Eleesha was awarded the Sky Academy Arts Scholarship for Channel Rose which launched the formation of Eleesha Drennan Dance (EDD) in 2014 and received first prize for Whiskers at the International Solo Dance Theatre Festival, Stuttgart in 2012.
During her time as the inaugural house choreographer of National Dance Company Wales, Drennan created numerous works including Phantoms of Us, Virtual Descent and Imbue that have toured nationally & internationally to great acclaim.
As well as leading her own projects, Eleesha has been commissioned to choreograph work for Tom Dale Company, Studio Wayne McGregor, National Dance Company Wales, Vanara The Musical, The Lost Estate (The Great Masked Ball), The Place, EDge (LCDS), London College of Fashion, Maiden Voyage Dance Company, Selfridges (The Body Studio Opening), Intoto (London Studio Centre), Fertile Ground, National Youth Dance Wales, RDC Youth, Grace & Growl Dance Company, Mathew Herbert, (Ron Arad’s Curtain Call at The Roundhouse, London.)
As a performer, Eleesha has worked with renowned choreographers including Ohad Naharin, Christopher Bruce, Itzik Galili, Nigel Charnock, Stephen Shropshire, Stephen Petronio, Angelin Preljocaj, Andonis Foniadakis and Stijn Celis. Eleesha performed in ‘Betrayal: A polyphonic crime drama by I Fagiolini produced by The Barbican, London.
Drennan has trained in dance, theatre and music since the age of four and graduated from the Northern School of Contemporary Dance with a BA honours degree and the outstanding achievement award. She has a post graduate diploma in performing arts from London Contemporary Dance School.
Eleesha Drennan Dance is currently developing a new production, All The Time In The World featuring Infinite Glimpse, which has been commissioned by DanceEast and is funded by Arts Council England, Arts Council Wales, Sky Arts and the Arts Foundation (25th anniversary awarded artist, nominated by Wayne McGregor). It is set to an original score by Adelphoi Music (by composers Jamie Masters and Andy Sherrif).
Creating connective experiences that aim to nurture people is extended through Drennans’ teaching practice. EDD aims to create open training opportunities for professionals and leads creative workshops for all levels and ages from young dancers on the CAT programme to Company Of Elders (Sadler’s wells). She teaches professional, youth and adult classes at The Place and is a guest teacher for National Dance Company Wales, Rambert School & Northern School of Contemporary Dance. Eleesha has lead dance workshops for Headway East London (adults living with brain injuries and Unique Feet (Children living with Rare Diseases)
She is hugely inspired by choreographers Crystal Pite and Pina Pausch and values regular support from her mentors Wayne McGregor CBE and Kerry Nicholls; including participation in the KND Creative Coaching Circle.
Eleesha’s distinctive choreographic voice was shaped by her unique childhood. Before moving to the UK in 1997, Eleesha grew up in rural Nova Scotia in the middle of nowhere next to the highest tides in the world. She lived in an alternative eco-community without electricity or television and her neighbour lived up a tree.
‘My formative years were spent playing in the mud, climbing trees and frolicking through fields of wild flowers. I could watch the waves crash violently into the cliffs for hours. I think that is where my imagination was born. I loved seeing how the landscape would slowly change shape over time. The boldness and power of the Bay of Fundy seeped into my bones and when I create work, it feels like that force wants to come out to play.’
‘Drennan’s aesthetic is very much her own. Her imagery is strong and original and elicits excellent performances from the dancers’ - Judith Mackrell, The Guardian on Channel Rose