As part of our Reconnect digital platform, we’re delighted to present our final panel discussion, Professional Careers in Dance, on Wednesday 30th June at 7pm on the YDanceScotland Facebook page.

In this discussion our panel of four industry experts will talk about their journey into dance, how they progressed their career and their advice on working in the dance sector.

Meet our panel below:

Hayley Durward – Dance Development Manager at Citymoves Dance Agency

Hayley trained as a dancer at Trinity Laban, before lecturing in contemporary technique, choreography and expressive arts at the Arts Educational School London. She was the founding Artistic Director of their touring company to The Royal Festival Hall and Lilian Baylis Theatre.

Hayley is currently a Dance Development Manager at Citymoves Dance Agency, an advisory board member for the Scottish School of Contemporary Dance at The Space and is the Chair of the board of trustees for Dundee based dance company Shaper/Caper.

Hayley has taught for many Scottish based companies including Scottish Ballet, Scottish Dance Theatre, Scottish School for Contemporary Dance, Barrowland Ballet and Shaper/Caper. She is an alumni of Creative and Cultural Skills Future Leaders and FST’s Step Up mentoring programme. Hayley believes in home grown talent and nurturing dancers from grass roots, through to training and becoming early career artists.

Naomi Murray – Rehearsal Director at Scottish Dance Theatre

Naomi began her formative training in Scotland at her local dance school in Cupar – Yvonne Gray School of Dance and then followed on with vocational training at The Dance School of Scotland. In 2005, she graduated from London Studio Centre with a BA (Hons) in Dance and Theatre (Contemporary Dance) to then return to her roots in Scotland and take up a position with Scottish Dance Theatre as their apprentice and then as company dancer in 2006 under the directorship of Janet Smith.

In 2012, Naomi transitioned from company dancer to a freelance artist, including projects as dancer and rehearsal director with choreographer Caroline Bowditch and Ashley Page at Glyndebourne Theatre. During this time, Naomi also undertook Stott Pilates teacher training and continued to perform with SDT as a guest dancer.
Naomi returned to the company as a dancer and joint rehearsal Director in 2014 as well as undertaking her postgraduate performance diploma with London Contemporary Dance School.

In 2016, she took on the role of Rehearsal Director under the directorship of Fleur Darkin, working with choreographers such as Botis Seva, Anton Lachky, assistant choreographer Rebecca Hytting, Damien Jalet, Fleur Darkin, Janine Harrington and most recently with Joan Clevillé as the current Artistic Director of the company.

Maxine Railton – Senior Lecturer at Dance Studio Scotland

Maxine Railton is Senior Lecturer at the hugely successful Dance Studio Scotland which is based in Glasgow Clyde College. She was born in Glasgow and trained at London School of Contemporary Dance and Codarts, Rotterdam. She has performed, choreographed and taught worldwide in a hugely varied career which has spanned the dance, theatre and opera worlds. Notable professional highlights include work with Michael Clark Dance Company, Matthew Hawkins, Kerry Nicholls, Paragon Ensemble, Scottish Opera and Scottish Ballet.

Emma Smith – Project Development Officer at Dance Base


Emma Smith is a Dance Artist, Researcher, and Creative Learning Practitioner originally from Midlothian, who specialises in contemporary dance and participatory practice.

As a Dance Artist with Indepen-dance, she performed and taught across Asia, Australia, South America, Europe, and the UK, winning the Three Weeks Editor’s Choice award at Edinburgh Fringe Festival 2018. In 2015, she was one of only three Scottish artists to be awarded a BBC Performing Arts Fellowship, which she undertook with YDance (Scottish Youth Dance). Emma gained a Masters of Education from the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland (RCS), which has led to pursuits as an arts researcher for Scottish Ballet, Dance Base, Curious Seed, and Capital Theatres.

Emma currently works as a part-time Project Development Officer for Dance Base, Scotland’s National Centre for Dance, where she coordinates the development of community projects.

Watch the Professional Careers in Dance Discussion Panel at 7pm on Wednesday 30th June on the YDanceScotland Facebook page >>>