Deborah Norris


  • Lecturer in Dance
  • Year 1 Subject Tutor for BA Hons Dance programme


Undergraduate and postgraduate teaching in dance techniques (Limon, Ballet, Contemporary, Jazz, Tap), Musical Theatre, Choreographic practices. MA Supervisor. Assistant advisor/teacher for undergraduate dance companies, EdgeFWD and 3rd Edge.

Education and Training

Deborah completed her vocational training at Elmhurst Ballet School, Surrey, graduating in 1997.  She holds a BA (Hons) in Communication Studies – Dance, from the University College of Ripon and York St John.  Her final dissertation was the culmination of a years field trip to New York, which involved an ethnographic study of tap dance and its master teachers including Jimmy Slyde, James ‘Buster’ Brown, and their protégés Savion Glover, and Jason Samuels Smith.

After completing her MA in Dance Studies at De Montfort University, Deborah received a scholarship to the Jose Limon Institute in New York in 2006. As part of her studies she performed and choreographed works that were performed at The Merce Cunningham Studios, Mark Morris Studios, and Gibney Dance.

Research & Professional Practice

  • Current doctoral research explores British Female Ballet Choreographers – The Narrative Works of Cathy Marston. Field-work will take place at Northern Ballet, Leeds, and The Royal Danish Ballet, Copenhagen.
  • Everyday People (August 2016)
  • Peaceful Waters – A new dance work devised in collaboration with artist Jeremy Ward and dancers, Daniel Whitley and James Finnemore. Mentored by Sally Marie, of Sweetshop Revolution and Rachel Palmer of the Dance Movement Collective, Surrey.


Conference Papers

  • Norris, D. (2016) Exploring the Choreographic Work of Cathy Marston: A British Matriach of British Ballet in the 21st Century, Contemporary Ballet Conference, New York.
  • Norris, D. (2016) Cathy Marston: The Only British Woman Choreographer Adapting Classics for the Ballet? Adaptation in Dance Conference, De Montfort University.
  • Norris, D. (2016) Safeguarding in Dance Competitions Move It Exhibition, London.

External Consultation

Deborah is a Committee Member for the Society for Dance Research, and All England Dance. She sits on the Board of Trustees for the British and International Federation of Festivals.

In 2014 Deborah received a role as one of the One Dance UK Teaching mentees, and was mentored by Amanda Britton (Principal of Rambert School), developing her position as a future dance leader for teaching in the UK.

Deborah is the Director of The Pointe Youth Dance Company, and a guest teacher for the British Ballet Organisation, All England Dance, Elmhurst Ballet School, and Centre Pointe.

Upcoming Projects

The Two Princesses – A Folk Ballet. A collaboration with folk artist, Lucy Ward, who is writing a brand new score. To be produced in 2018.

Peaceful Waters – A site specific work in development with Snowdonia National Park. This work is being developed from the Everyday People project. To be produced in 2017.

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