The short non-fiction film "Danceforce40+" (7.10) is about the physical and emotional adjustments required for mature dancers who are part of a Danish dance company.  

On November 3rd, "Danceforce40+" was screened in one of my favorite movie theaters, Cinema Village on 12th street, at the New York Short Film Festival.

On September 30th, "Danceforce40+" was screened at the 3rd annual 40 NORTH  International Dance Film Festival in San Diego, CA. 



Directed and edited by Malene Schjønning

Produced by Danceforce40+ and Malene Schjønning


Excerpt from the following workshops:

Seven Blessings of Survival (2017)

Workshop leader: Charlotte Rindum

Researcher: Lise Aagaard Knudsen  

Composer and Cello: Anne Kirstine Eisensee

Camera: Malene Schjønning

Dancers: Alexandre Bourdat, Anne Kirstine Eisensee and Carina Raffel 


Trigger Points (2017)

Research leader: Kenneth Kreutzmann

Music: "Desert music” by Jóhann Jóhannsson

Camera: Malene Schjønning

Dancers: Sorella Englund, David Price and Issam Talib 


The Death Machine (2016)

Research leader: My Nilsson

Researcher: Karen Vedel 

Camera: Malene Schjønning

Dancer: Carina Raffel 


The I Koncept (2014)

Workshop leaders: Jeromy Nelson and Luis Malvacias

Music: Matmos- M.C. Schmidt and Drew Daniel

Camera: Luis Malvacias and Carina Raffel

Dancers: Miguel Cortés, Gaute Grimeland, Dorte Persson, Carina Raffel, Reidar Sjøset and Camilla Stage 


Blood Moon (2015)

Excerpt from "Blood Moon" a short Docu-poem

Directed by Julian Neville 

Written by Martin Butler 

Shot and edited by Julian Neville

Choreographed by Martin Butler

Music by Guillermo Martorell and performed by the Barcelona Gamelan Orchestra

Dancers: Helle Bach, Allan Clausen, Heidi Stærke Eriksen, Susanne Frederiksen, Paul Gordon, Ole Birger

Hansen, Janne Weidinger Kristensen, Peter Vadim Juhl Nielsen, Carina Raffel, Anne-Claire Theissen, Tomomi

Yamauchi and Angelina Watson  


Special thanks to: Charlotte Munch Bengtsen, Mikkel Arnfred, Erik Agergaard and Dansehallerne


Director Statement

As a filmmaker, my goal is to make films that both reflect both a personal perspective, and that speak more broadly in surprising new ways. 

When doing documentary work, I do a great deal of planning and try to shoot as much film as possible in order to whittle things down so that only the absolute best material remains. One of my mottos is: If I don’t film it, I can’t cut it. 

The dancers I filmed who were members of the Danceforce40+ community were a particular inspiration. Their perseverance, enthusiasm, and skills as dancers made me want to capture their energy as much as is possible on film. 

Many of the dancers have pushed themselves beyond the limit during their careers, resulting in multiple surgeries and constant pain. The result, I found, is that mature dance is less harmful to the body, and in turn, far more expressive than the dance that is produced by today’s leading dance companies. 

As a dancer myself, I found that element especially hopeful.


About the Danish dance community Danceforce40+ 

The organisation focuses on dance and age – and the importance of both, be it on stage or in the communication of dance as an art form. Dance and movement, whether choreographed or improvised, affect body  and mind in a positive way – and dance, no matter at what age, is always a presence of physicality in time.


About the cast member Sorella Englund, featured in the excerpt from the workshop Trigger Points.

Sorella Englund is born 23 December 1945 in Helsinki, is a former soloist and character dancer with the Royal Danish Ballet. She has been a keen supporter of August Bournonville, staging a number of his ballets in Denmark and abroad.