Artistic Director & Choreographer
Cathy is an award winning Choreographer and Movement Director, working for over a decade in contemporary dance and theatre. After training at LABAN, Cathy went on to choreograph for multiple organisations (BBC, Tate Modern, Wembley Arena, Breakin’ Convention, Barbican) before founding Cathy Waller Company in 2012. With her company, Cathy has choreographed and directed contemporary dance works that have toured nationally on stages such as Sadler’s Wells, Stratford Circus, West End Live, National Theatre and Greenwich and Docklands International Festival. As a Movement Director for theatre and film, most notable credits include: Missing Julie (Theatre Clwyd, Kaite O'Reilly), The Solid Life of Sugar Water (Graeae, Theatre Royal Plymouth, National Theatre), Architecture of Anatomy (Kristina Walsh, Sarabande: The Lee Alexander McQueen Foundation) and ba(ME) (Julie Ann Minaai, Michael Garett).
As a consultant, Cathy works with independent artists and arts organisations to support growth in strategy, finance, fundraising and better access for artists and audiences. During Covid-19, Cathy worked with over 20 non-disabled and disabled artists and 5 arts organisations to support their financial recovery and stabilisation, sourcing over £500,000 from various funding bodies across the UK.
Cathy's career began training in gymnastics and classical forms throughout her youth in Hampshire, continuing her professional training at LABAN Conservatoire for Contemporary Dance, graduating with a BA Hons in Dance Theatre.
Alongside her training, Cathy developed her love for hip hop theatre by co-founding the youth group Surge Dance in 2006. As co-director and choreographer, Surge toured around the U.K for 4 years in over 25 venues, including performing at prestigious venues such as Sadlers Wells, Hammersmith Apollo, Wembley and Barbican to name a few.
Cathy has choreographed pieces for Breakin' Convention for 4 years in succession as well as for the BBC, Move-It, Tate Modern and a vast number of dance platforms and festivals throughout the U.K. In 2009, Cathy became Resident Choreographer of Dance Offensive, creating full length work, developing young aspiring dancers and collaborating with professional artists of a wide range of disciplines.
Cathy has been teaching and sharing her work for the past 12 years in masterclasses, workshops and teaching regular classes in London, Cambridge and Leicester. Cathy continues to be commissioned to create work in schools, youth companies and for professional projects. It was in 2009 Cathy began working with young offenders at both Dance Offensive and Kids Company London, introducing hip hop dance as a form of enjoyment, release and focus.
Her first contemporary dance work, 'In.Difference' featured 5 international dancers alongside a live musician. From then, Cathy went on to direct and choreograph a short dance film to dive deeper into her choreographic practice. In 2011, Cathy flew to Kenya to create a piece for the Tandawazi Festival. On behalf of Dance Offensive, Cathy worked with a group of girls from the Huruma Slums in Nairobi, teaching workshops for Bboys and dancers in and around Kenya, and performed at the Arts Festival.
Cathy Waller Company
After being awarded the Blueprint Bursary in 2012, a commissioning fund given by Sadler's Wells and East London Dance, Cathy created Cathy Waller Company, a touring company of dancers and live musicians. After a wealth of experience as a choreographer working for other directors and producers, Cathy formed her own vocabulary, vision and explosive aesthetic style.
The company have since toured to over 30 venues in the U.K, including Peacock Theatre, National Theatre, West End Live, Stratford Circus, Lilian Baylis, Greenwich and Docklands Festival, Stockton International Riverside Festival and successfully gaining commissions from Gi20 and Without Walls.
Cathy became the receipient of the London Dance Award 2012, after being shortlisted alongside 6 other choreographers and dancers in the U.K including Wayne Mcgregor, Akram Khan and Lloyd Newson.
Cathy's freelance work away from the Company focuses on Movement Direction and choreography for dance and theatre companies, festivals and the occasional musical. In 2015/16, Cathy was Movement Director for Graeae's award winning production, 'The Solid Life of Sugar Water' ending their National Tour with a 3 week run at the National Theatre. In 2018, Cathy was Associate Choreogpapher for the comedy musical Thor & Loki, produced by Vicky Graham Productions in collaboration with House of Blakewell.
Most recently Cathy was Movement Director for Architecture of Autonomy, a short film from Designer Kristina Walsh and Directed by Mae Sass. Supported by Sarabande: The Lee Alexander McQueen Foundation, saw 5 disabled and non-disabled movers come together to create a world of community, independence and connection.
Dance and Disability
At the end of 2012, Cathy became disabled. Whilst continuing her original vision for the Company, and continuing her choreographic work, Cathy has adapted her way of working to make the Arts world more accessible for her. Cathy works extensively with other disabled artists and prominently advocates for more exposure of disabled dance artists and their work in the arts sector.
2019/20 will see the first work by Cathy Waller Company that draws on Cathy's personal experiences of living with an invisible disability. For more information about this work, click here