Jean Abreu Dance was founded in 2009 as the creative engine of its Artistic Director, Jean Abreu.

Our work uses the body as a tool to articulate human emotions, memories, sensations and desires.

We use movement and choreography, contemporary music, visual arts, design and digital technology to create dance performances that celebrate the transformative nature of human identity.

Jean Abreu Dance believes the body holds the key to explain who we are and how we feel, giving us a universal language to communicate with and connect to others. Collaboration is another fundamental aspect of our creative process and often our productions dialogue with artists from other disciplines.

We present our work locally, internationally and via online spaces, reaching audiences across the world. Committed to broadening access to dance, our creative learning programme provides inspiring opportunities for community groups, young people and professionals.

Jean Abreu Dance has been an Associate Artist at The Place, Swindon Dance, South Hill Park, Artist-in-Residence at DanceEast, Ipswich and Artist in Resident at Hat Factory, Luton. We are currently based at UK Centre For Carnival Arts in Luton.

As a dance artist and choreographer most of my work arises from using the body as a tool to articulate human emotions, memories and experiences. I consider the body to hold the key to explain who we are and what we feel, offering us a channel and primal language in which we can communicate with. I am often interested in how physical linguistics open up endless possibilities of translating our inner sensations; a way of processing information and as a means to communicate and connect to others.

Collaboration is another great fascination of mine and often my work evolves in dialogue with other artists from other art forms. I believe that the work I want to create can only exist in a state of continuous negotiation therefore fluid and in perpetual transformation: (E)Motion. I also value the fact that dialogue encourages collective thinking.

My understanding of dance and choreography as an art form are broad and now with the restrictions and challenges of live performance, I feel this understanding will change. I am both excited and scared.

Jean Abreu, October 2020

"A killer blend of a beguiling style with raw emotional punch."

The Guardian

Jean Abreu by Noel Shelley

Jean Abreu

Artistic Director and Performer

Born in Brazil, Jean Abreu moved to London in 1996 after receiving a scholarship to study at Trinity Laban Conservatoire for Music and Dance. In 2003 he was awarded the Jerwood Choreography Award and became an Associate Artist at The Place in London.

Since then his work has toured throughout the U.K, Europe and Brazil including performances for Royal Opera House, Dance Umbrella Festival, Southbank Centre, Julidans Festival & the Auditório Ibirapuera São Paulo.

He founded Jean Abreu Dance in 2009. Across his career Jean has been a movement director for fashion magazines and global advertising campaigns including TikTok, Nike, OutThere Magazine. Jean has taught extensively his movement practice in the UK and abroad in renowned dance organisations and Universities across the globe.

Natalie Richardson

Michael Peter Johnson

Max Zhang

Michael Peter Johnson

Producer (UK)

Michael Peter Johnson is an independent creative producer, project coordinator and event manager specialising in contemporary dance, fashion, art and film. Michael is currently the associate producer for Jean Abreu Dance and is the project coordinator for Luca Silvestrini's Protein, overseeing multiple touring, performance and participation projects including Protein's Real Life Real Dance programme and (In)visible Dancing 2019. He previously worked at Sadler’s Wells in the Producing and Touring department, helping to produce and tour international choreographers such as Carlos Acosta and Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui. Some of his work has also included assisting choreographer Joe Moran (Dance Art Ltd) on casting and managing high profile fashion shows, (Hussein Chalayan, Kate Spade, Royal College of Art)

Max Zhang

Producer (China)

Experienced Project Manager with a demonstrated history of working in the Performing Art(舞台表演) and Entertainment industry(娱乐产业). Skilled in Theatre Production, Stage Management, Event Planning, Event Operations, as well as certain experience of Marketing and Theatre Technique.
Graduated from Beijing Dance Academy, majored in Culture & Entertainment Industry Management, have been working over 8 years with Theatre and Entertainment Companies from all over the world, working as Senior Manager of Culture & Tourism Department, Joy Picture Group, as well as an Exclusive Producer for Performing Art for his own production company Max Productions.

Joao Federici

Producer (Brazil)

After graduating in drama with a specialization in creative producing, João founded his own production company, Ideias & Ideais, in 1993 in Sao Paulo, Brazil. For more than two decades since, he’s continued to produce critically-acclaimed and financially successful plays and films between Brazil, Portugal and USA. Beginning in 1996, he started working with MixBrasil Festival of Diversity – the largest LGBTQ -themed film festival in Latin America. And since 2006, he’s been the Artistic and Executive Director.

He’s been a guest curator and programmer of Brazillian-themed programs in numerous festivals around the world and has participated on the jury in such festivals as: Cannes Film Festival (France); Berlinale Film Festival (Germany); Guadalajara Film Festival (Mexico); Frameline (USA); OutFest (USA); Mix Milano (Italy); TLVFilmFest (Israel); Queer Lisboa (Portugal); and D.iva (Chile) among others.

Dance Artist, Margarida Macieira

Dramaturg, Guy Cools

Artists, Gilbert and George

Guy Cools

Dance Dramaturg

Dr. Guy Cools is a dance dramaturge. Recent positions include Associate Research Professor at the research institute Arts in Society of the Fontys School of Fine and Performing Arts in Tilburg, and Postdoctoral Researcher at Ghent University, where he finished a practice-based PhD on the relationship between dance and writing. He has worked as a dance critic and dance curator. He now dedicates himself to production dramaturgy, contributing to work by choreographers all over Europe and Canada such as: Jean Abreu (UK), Koen Augustijnen (BE), Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui (BE), Danièle Desnoyers (CA), Lia Haraki (CY), Christopher House (CA), Akram Khan (UK), Arno Schuitemaker (NL), and Stephanie Thiersch (DE). He regularly lectures and publishes, and has developed a series of workshops that aim to support artists and choreographers in their creative process. Cools lives in Vienna.

Michele Panegrossi

Creative Technologist/Production Manager

Michele Panegrossi is a Creative Technologist and a Sound Designer. In his practice he works with interaction technology, design and digital audio and video, focusing on creating imaginative interactive experiences through sensors and 3D audio. His recent works include development for immersive theatre company Punchdrunk, a collaboration with the winners of The Oxford Samuel Beckett Theatre Trust Award, a permanent audiovisual interactive installation at Wilton’s Music Hall, the ‘Talking Tulips’ installation in London Leicester Square and a collaboration for the Imagine Children’s Festival at Southbank Centre.

Cathryn Robson

Voice Coach

Cathryn Robson is a singing and voice specialist based in London and Ipswich, UK working within her all-vocal umbrella the voice centre. She has been providing training, advice and support for singers, dancers, actors, poets and business professionals since 2002. She is passionate about helping people unearth and safely develop their unique vocal power and presence. Cathryn is currently Senior Singing Lecturer on the BMus Commercial Music Performance at the University of Westminster and Voice Lecturer on the BA Musical Theatre at London College of Music. She was Head of Singing on the Trinity Diploma in Music Theatre at Wac Arts, London between 2013-19 and has previously worked with performers at the Institute of Contemporary Music, Regents' College, the Royal Central School of Speech and Drama, The Musical Theatre Academy, Trinity Laban, London Metropolitan University and Ravensbourne College. Cathryn holds an MA Voice Studies from the Royal Central School of Speech and Drama and is trained in the Estill Model (Levels 1 and 2).

Dance Artist, TJ Lowe

Dance Artist, Andrej Petrovic

Voice Coach, Cathryn Robson


Listed below are the artists, musicians and creatives that have inspired and collaborated with Jean Abreu Dance.

Naishi Wang, Gilbert and George, 65 Days of Static, Moving Brands, Elisa Bracher, Paul Wolinski, Richard Nicoll, Alisa N, Mavron Quartet, Jorge Garcia

Dance Artists

Joshua Smith, Ayongga, Maya Yoncali and Emma Farnell-Watson, Camilla Brogaard, Rafaela Sahyoun, Margarida Macieira, Rita Carpinteiro, Camilla Brogaard, Jemima Brown, Luna Cenere, Aaron Vickers, Eleanor McDonald, Maria Fonseca, Stephen Moynihan, Weyson Poon, Paula Rechtman Yuyu Rau, Rosana Ribeiro, Lewis Wilkins,Theo Lowe, Chris Rook, Robbie Synge, Joe Wild, Carl Patrick, Jamie Morgans, Ming Heiwong, Christopher Rook, Ponciano Almeida, Eleanor Valere, Paula Conduit, Andrej Petrovic, Navala Chauhari

Lighting Designers
Andy Hamer, Lee Curran, Michael Mannion, David Holmes, Sarah Gilmartin

Sound Designers & Musicians
Luca Biada, Heinali (Oleg Shpudeiko), Jera Samsom, Charlie Barber, Olfuar Arnold, Anselmo Netto, John Metcalfe, Neil Kaczor. Lee Sparey

Costume Designers
Richard Nicoll, Abdul Hamid, Tony Wood,

Filmmakers and Photographers
Ambra Vernuccio, Julian Cole, Noel Shelley, Paul Scala, Ben Hudson,Topher Campbell, John Kaminski, Foteini Christofilopoulou,

Lootie Johansen-Bibby, Guy Cools, Shue Xie

Voice Coaches
Nia Lynn, Cathryn Robson


Mat Heinl

Sean Cross (Chair)

Natalie Richardson




Jean Abreu Dance uses movement to reinvent the way we see ourselves and how we see others. We believe in creativity to illuminate, share and shift people's perspectives of the world. We provide people with radical dance experiences that captivate, transform & recognise otherness.


Our mission is to create and present dance experiences that captivate, transform and broaden people's perspectives across our communities and around the world. Our diverse programme allows audiences and communities from all backgrounds to experience our work. We make imaginative productions through breathtaking collaborations and inspiring educational projects.



Jean Abreu Dance exists only in conversation with others. We believe in internationalism and interdependence. We work across art forms and integrate new technology into our work.


We stand for equity and equality and believe dance can support social mobility and cohesion.


Jean Abreu Dance believes in creating honest, open and inclusive spaces that values the voices of all.


Jean Abreu Dance is a continuously transforming organisation that is agile and able to respond and reflect contemporary issues.


Jean Abreu Dance is unafraid to challenge our art form and our organisation. Jean Abreu Dance believes in taking creative risks.


We believe in the power of dance to communicate global perspectives.


We believe in giving agency to others and advocate for contemporary dance as an art form. We believe in listening and amplifying the voices of others.


We believe in bringing people together through dance. We actively listen to and support the needs of others.