Lewis Major FRSA is a proud First Nations Australian artist hailing from the Ngarrindjeri and Bungandidj nations and is currently based in Leicester. Renowned as a choreographer, artistic director, creative entrepreneur, arts advocate, and producer, Lewis brings a unique blend of experiences from his background in sheep shearing to the forefront of contemporary dance theatre. His distinctive artistic style resonates globally, and he is deeply committed to amplifying the voices of underrepresented individuals in the arts industry.
As a founding member of the Aakash Odedra Company, Lewis co-choreographed ‘Murmur’ and ‘Little Murmur,’ commissioned by The Spark. Over the course of a decade, he honed his skills while collaborating with luminaries in the contemporary dance world, including Akram Khan, Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui, Russell Maliphant, Hans van den Broeck (Cie Soit/Les Ballets C de la B), Damien Jalet, Hofesh Shechter, and Shaun Parker, among others.
More about the artist
Lewis’s work is defined by the ethos of “local focus, global outlook” and has graced stages on six continents, including prestigious venues such as Sadler’s Wells, The Royal Opera House, Galway International Arts Festival, and the Baryshnikov Art Centre in New York.
Here’s what Lewis had to say about being a Vital Spark Relationship programme and Ideas Fund artist “I am exhilarated to be a part of Vital Spark, a platform that resonates deeply with my artistic ethos. This initiative presents a golden opportunity to further hone my craft, fostering a nurturing environment where collaboration and innovation thrive, allowing me to explore new dimensions in dance that are both culturally enriching and engaging. I am eager to immerse myself in this vibrant community, where I anticipate a journey of growth, learning, and creating performances that resonate globally, yet touch hearts individually.”
With a portfolio of 17 diverse works, both independent and commissioned, Lewis has created notable pieces like the opera ‘Watershed: The Death of Dr. Duncan,’ ‘Monolith,’ ‘Ophelia,’ and ‘Satori.’ His dedication to the East Midlands arts community is evident through his roles as an advocate, producer, program director, and choreographer.
Lewis has garnered multiple sought-after international choreographic residencies and received prestigious awards such as the Frank Ford Award, a Winston Churchill Fellowship for Excellence in the Performing Arts, and a Regional Arts Australia Fellowship, among others. He is also a graduate of Curve Theatre’s Young Arts Entrepreneurship program.
What’s the idea
“‘Luminous’ is a reimagining of my globally acclaimed work ‘Satori,’ which has been well-received in Italy, Scotland, France, Ireland, Australia, and throughout the UK. Now, I aim to recreate this piece for young audiences, infusing it with a new layer of interactivity and engagement.” “This part-interactive installation, part site-specific, and part performance piece is a narrative journey into the act of growing up and finding personal autonomy as a young, culturally diverse person, while also exploring themes of connection, community, and the power of collective action.”
”I am exhilarated to be a part of Vital Spark... I am eager to immerse myself in this vibrant community, where I anticipate a journey of growth, learning, and creating performances that resonate globally, yet touch hearts individually.
Lewis MajorRelationship Programme & Ideas Fund Artist
We believe that all children should be able to experience arts and culture, and that they should be able to see themselves represented in these experiences. This is not yet the case for every child and we’re committed to changing that.
Our response is Vital Spark, and it's at the heart of everything we do. Vital Spark is about challenging and changing the lack of diversity in children’s arts and culture; it’s about diverse-led artistic decision making; it’s about not being afraid to stand up for what’s right.
We do this by supporting artists who are currently underrepresented in children’s arts and culture. We also work with partner organisations to create world-class opportunities for these artists and share best practice.