Artistic Directors Jessica Kennedy and Megan Kennedy
Junk Ensemble was founded in 2004 by identical twin sisters Megan Kennedy and Jessica Kennedy to create works of brave and imaginative dance theatre. Previous Artists in Residence at Tate Britain, the multi-award winning company have build a reputation in Ireland as dance innovators. Junk Ensemble's work has toured throughout the UK, Europe and Ireland and New York and continues to tour nationally and internationally. Their productions are often created in collaboration with artists from other disciplines to produce a rich mix of visual and performance styles that seeks to challenge the traditional audience performer relationship. This approach has led to productions being created in non-traditional or found spaces as well as more conventional theatre spaces.
Junk Ensemble were Artists in Residence at The Tate, London in February 2012 and created the commissioned work Sometimes We Break, during that period. The company were Artists in Residence for Fingal County Council 2010/11 and Artistic Directors of Drogheda Youth Dance in 2007. Past productions include Walking Pale (Dublin Dance Festival/GPO Commission 2016), It Folds (Edinburgh Fringe Festival 2016, Mayfest Bristol, TDF 2015), Dusk Ahead (La MaMa Moves Festival/Irish Arts Centre NYC 2015/Irish Tour 2015/Dublin Theatre Festival 2013/Kilkenny Arts Festival 2013), The Falling Song (UK and Irish Tours 2014/Belfast Festival 2012/Dublin Dance Festival 2012), Bird with Boy (UK Tour 2016/Dublin Theatre Festival 2012/Dublin Fringe Festival 2011), Sometimes We Break (Tate Britain commission 2012), Five Ways to Drown (Irish Tour 2012/Dublin Dance Festival 2010), Pygmalian Revisited (Áix-en-Provence commission 2010), Drinking Dust (2008/09) and The Rain Party (2007).
Junk Ensemble are Project Artists at Project Arts Centre.
Jessica Kennedy is Co-Artistic Director of Junk Ensemble. Jessica trained in the United States, Dublin and London, completing her degree in Dance and English Literature at Middlesex University, London. She has performed extensively with dance and theatre companies throughout Europe and the UK, including Blast Theory (UK) Retina Dance Company (UK), Tanz Lange (Germany), Firefly Productions (Belgium), Storytelling Unplugged (Romania). In Ireland she collaborates regularly with Brokentalkers (Circus Animals' Desertion, The Blue Boy, Frequency 783, In Real Time, On This One Night) and has performed in productions with The Abbey Theatre, The Ark and The Pavilion Theatre. She created the award winning and internationally acclaimed film Motion Sickness in 2012, which has screened across 30 festivals worldwide. Other film credits include The Wake (Invisible Thread Films/Oonagh Kearney 2013), Turning (Highly Stimulating Productions 2013), Dance Emergency (TG4 2013), Wonder House (JDIFF 2012) and Her Mother’s Daughters (RTÉ 2010/Oonagh Kearney). She has lectured at various universities and also performs in the band Everything Shook. She was awarded Best Female Performer for Dublin Fringe Festival 2006. Jessica was Dancer in Residence at RUA RED Arts Centre 2012-13, where she exhibited Walking on white lines. Other choreographic credits include the creation of Songs from a Car Park (Dublin Fringe Festival/RUA RED 2014) and Nixon in China (Wide Open Opera/Bord Gais Theatre 2014).
Megan Kennedy is Co-Artistic Director of Junk Ensemble. Megan trained at Alvin Ailey Dance Center in New York City and received a B.A. Honours from Queen Margaret University in Edinburgh. Choreography for live performance includes Villette (West Yorkshire Playhouse), Town is Dead (The Abbey Theatre), Marble & Bread (Dance Limerick), Tchaikovsky’s Queen of Spades Opera (Edinburgh Festival Theatre), Bram Stoker Festival (IRL), and eX Choral Ensemble (IRL). Performance and choreography for film includes Óiche Nollaig na mBan (RTÉ TG4), The Wake (dir: Oonagh Kearney), Blind Runner (Junk Ensemble/Dance Ireland Commission), Wonder House (Dublin Film Festival), Her Mother’s Daughters (Winner Best Actress Capalbio Festival Italy/Dance on Camera NYC/RTÉ Dance on the Box). Megan has performed with Retina Dance Company (UK), Tanz Lange (Germany), Firefly Productions (Belgium), Storytelling Unplugged (Romania), Blast Theory (UK) and in Ireland with Brokentalkers (The Blue Boy, On This One Night), CoisCéim Dance Theatre (Faun, As You Are), The Abbey Theatre (Romeo & Juliet), Mouth on Fire (Everlasting Voices), Bedrock Productions (Pale Angel) and productions for The Pavilion Theatre and The Ark (IRL). Megan was Dance Artist-in-Residence in Limerick in 2014/15. She is a Fellow of Salzburg Global Seminar and the chair of Dance Travels.
Photo credit: Ted Jones