AΦE is an Ashford-based dance company founded in 2013 by Aoi Nakamura and Esteban Fourmi. With the vision to bring the art of dance closer to audiences, our mission is to create high-quality productions and experiences that are not bound by a stage.
Driven by the power of body and movement in space, our productions are environments that allow the audience to enjoy total immersion. Each element in the performance space – the set, performers, audience, sound, objects – is part of an echosystem, carefully constructed to allow audience’s own reflection on the subject explored.
The company's first major commission WHIST, a dance and Virtual Reality production, received its sold-out world premiere in April 2017. Within 19 months, it toured to 20 venues/festivals in 18 cities and 9 countries and was seen by more than 8000 paying audiences in dance, film, media art and technology. It also received positive reviews from industry professionals and press:
- “Suitably disorientating, great art” - Hedley Swain, Arts Council England Director of South East
- "Powerful, refreshing, exciting" - Creative Review
- “A boundary breaking piece. A truly beautiful, compelling and important work.” - VICE, The Creators Project
AE was recently commissioned to create an Augmented Reality version of ZeroDegrees (Choreographers/performers: Akram Khan and Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui).
AE was one of the 60 organisations to be on Creative United’s Prosper business support programme in 2017-18, and TimeOut Sydney called it “an innovative UK dance company”.
Individually, Aoi and Esteban has been performing since 2006 at major companies in Europe such as Jasmin Vardimon Company, Punchdrunk, Saarländisches Staatstheatre, Hessishes Staatstheatre Wiesbaden and Staatstheater Kassel. They have also choreographed, directed and performed for works by other prestigious producers, including Sean Roggs’ immersive experience The Waldorf Project, a 360° film for Elbphilharmonie Hamburg (Google Arts & Culture) (240k YouTube views) and short film “Kai”.
They were also guest curators for an art exhibition and a Digital Performance Weekender for Devonshire Collective in Eastbourne in November 2017.