Dancing With The Orange Dog

Status: Past Project

An Art Exhibition. A Theatre Show. A Music Gig.

Only now is real. The rest is just storytelling.  This is Dan. His idol, his Granddad, is a story. Dan’s just discovered this. He’s also realised that he too is just a story.  Now he can’t sleep. Then there’s Lucy. She just wants to tell stories about her loved ones. Stories that make others see the best in them. Even if that means lying a little bit.

Dancing with the Orange Dog is one evening split into 3 parts… or three night’s worth of entertainment in one, as we like to think of it! This unique experience means that you can enjoy an art exhibition, a theatre show and a music gig all in one night.  Using live animation, storytelling, music, dance, video, photography and the moving image, this is a charming, quirky and intimate evening all about stories, why we tell them and why sometimes we turn them into shaggy dogs.

Dancing with the Orange Dog was conceived as a project that explores storytelling and how the presentation of it affects its audience. To explore this it successfully endeavoured to tell a single narrative across 3 different events in a single night and to use a variety of different art forms, such as animation, performance and music to present the story. As such, the audience would attend an art installation before watching a theatre show and finally attending a music gig. Each part of the project can was created in such a way that it could be enjoyed as a standalone piece, however, when experienced collectively they created a richer and more rounded story.

The production was the first commission by Routes North; an initiative set up by ARC, Stockton; The Lowry, Salford and Theatre in the Mill, Bradford and received funding from the Arts Council, England. As well as touring these venues the production went on to tour several others around the country after its great reception from both audiences and critics alike.



“This special piece of work is revealing if only it shows a brilliant level of creativity sitting at the heart of Yorkshire’s cultural boom, it is also a deeply moving piece of art” - Nick Ahad, Yorkshire Post.”

“This is a lovely, inventive show, dripping with charm and beautifully conceived” - Jo Beggs, The Public Reviews

“Dancing with the Orange Dog is a beautiful, warm, really life enhancing piece of work. Masterful storytelling. Go see it!” - Audience Member


Man: Dan Mallaghan

Woman: Lucy Lane

Musician (stage play): Guiliano Modarelli

Band (Music Gig):  The Housekeeping Society

Creative Team:

Lead Artist/Director: Dan Mallaghan

Art Director: Fabric Lenny

Writers: Dan Mallaghan & Lucy Lane

Animators and Exhibition Artists: Fabric Lenny, Yvonne Roberts, Dan Mallaghan, Benjamin Rabe, Matthew Watkins, Jonathan Grauel, Richard Hanson, Lou Sumray.

Music: Guiliano Modarelli (stage play) and The Housekeeping Society (stage play, exhibition and gig).

Stage Set, Lighting Design and Production Manager: Jason Salvin

Exhibition design: Fabric Lenny and Lou Sumray

Producer: Yvonne Roberts