It was a full house at the Hall for Cornwall last week, as 130 Cornish dancers took to the stage to tell the story of the very dance company they represent.  

Only a smattering of tickets were left as the curtain went up for The Big Dance Company’s show ‘The Story So Far’. The venue welcomed visitors to celebrate Fiona Richardson’s 24 Year Anniversary at the dance company.  

Fiona, who created the docu-dance piece to tell her own personal journey has an incredible story to share, detailing how she overcame extreme challenges including homelessness and domestic abuse. 

The highly emotional narrative of the piece combusted into an electric atmosphere, mixed with laughter, tears, cheering and applause. The core cast weaved their way through Fiona’s story, lighting up the stage with their performances. 

As well as current students, plenty of the company’s alumni also returned to take to the stage. 

Among the returning dancers was Jack Walker from Callington. Discussing the event, he said: “Returning to Penzance [where the company is based] and working with my cast was such a rewarding experience. 

“Fiona and the team have instilled talent, discipline, kindness and above all passion into each and every student within the school.  

“Their hunger to learn and desire to better themselves has stemmed from the top and Fiona has done such a beautiful job at creating thoughtful, respectful and versatile dancers, who as people are always looking out for each other. An incredible studio!” 

As well as Jack, another local is returning to the stage for the first time in ten years. Polly Maclennan from Launceston is excited to be coming back for such a big occasion.  

She said: “After ten years being off the stage it is so magical to be invited back to be part of this special show with BDC – I am a teeny sliver of a huge machine but even my few little minutes of stage feel like an epic journey back in time.  

“Fiona is a one off, someone who loves, cherishes and commits her whole life to her dancers. It’s so rare to see and I am utterly blessed to be involved in this moment with her and the team.”  

A spokesperson for the company explained: “Tears of emotion and magic were brought not only by the storyline of homelessness and domestic abuse, but also due to the alumni performance - where some of the cast came back to the stage after as long as 17 years off, a huge achievement and extremely intimate moment for all in the hall. 

The impressive mixture of on-stage media elements and historical video clips, images and soundbites hooked the viewers in from the first moment and allowed the dancers to tell a story with grit, heart and most of all – immense talent.”