Decoda Internships and Volunteering

Decoda Internships and Volunteering

Since Decoda’s very beginnings at Summer Dancing in 2007, there has been a heavy emphasis and reliance on the work of volunteers and helpers to allow the organisation to thrive and support the independent dance community. This has developed into a platform and opportunity for students, recent graduates and artists alike to become involved in the work that Decoda do- be this as little as helping at Summer Dancing Festival or undertaking an internship for a period of time such as 3 months or even a year.

Below is a snapshot of what is involved in volunteering or doing an internship with Decoda. We are always interested to work with new people and happy to talk about what that might mean for each individual.

Recent Interns – Keity Pook and Angelika Mizinska

Keity: Besides learning to design newsletters and e-flyers in Mail Chimp platform, I also learn the principles and priorities of dance organisation in helping with the planing and delivery of workshops and performances.  I have had the opportunity to meet and work with new interesting people and artists. I had a great time working with a camera and recording the studio work done by Lizzy Le Quesne (Making Space artist). Another time, I have had a studio session with Tracy Veck (Ground Session member), where I shared my contact improvisation observations with her. A Decoda internship is brilliant, because it allows you to experience all the roles within the organisation and in this way you can find out which one you are the most suitable for. I enjoyed most to do the interpersonal work. I leave from here with new great baggage of knowledge and contacts. Thank you so much Katye and Lily for offering me this opportunity and I wish all the best to Decoda.

Angelika: I learnt about DECODA while studying at Coventry University and started as a volunteer during Summer Dancing 2014, when I had a chance to work with Mary Pearson. I was involved in several events and found my interest in the way that the organisation works. As an Intern for Decoda I have had an insight into the work of a dance organisation. I am gaining new skills in marketing, administration and event organisation. I have had a chance to work with people who share the same interest as me. I am constantly learning about work in a dance organisation and a having the chance to learn and develop new skills, as well as the opportunity to meet artists, witness and support them during their research process, rehearsals and performances. What is more, I can be involved in a variety of activities, such as workshops, Ground Work and Contact Improvisation Jams and undertake new roles. I have learnt about what challenges me and what I need to develop and what I enjoy the most.

Each person we work with is able to taylor their experience to what their interests are and around other things they are involved in. Interns have a more extended time with Decoda and will cover more of the following tasks-

Typical Roles and responsibilities:

Front of house: selling tickets and registering participants
Artist assistants: supporting artist during their residences and rehearsing period
Marketing and Advertising: using Mail Chimp platform to create and send e-flyers, managing Decoda Facebook, Twitter and home page
Managing bookings for workshops and performances
Managing mailboxes: communicating with artists, performers and participants
Updating the accommodation list
Taking minutes in the board meetings

As a not for profit organisation Decoda is run in the most part on a voluntary basis. Therefore we are unable to offer paid internships. However interns are able to take part in workshops, see performances and be involved in projects all free of charge. Where possible we will also cover expenses incurred as part of the work.

Below is a presentation produced by Ella Tighe, a graduate that has just completed her BA (Hons) Dance Making & Performance at Coventry University. Ella began her internship with Decoda for Summer Dancing 2014 and then continued the internship to coincide with a Performing Arts Work placement Module as part of her degree. Ella now works at Independent Dance in London.