Melanie has been involved with horses all her life. She trained and rode horses in Endurance riding competitions at local and international level. In 1998 she was ranked top british Endurance Rider and placed 8th in the European trophy. In 2000 she became British Endurance Champion riding her own Schenkers Samurai who also took the coverted best condition award for the same 160 km race.
Since retiring from competetive riding, Melanie focused on the relationship between horse and human which led to studying natural horsemanship, equine bio mechanics, and natural hoof care. In 2009 she graduated the school of Barehoof Strategy and became a professional hoof trimmer. In 2015, she was approached by GDance as they were looking for a horse to perform at liberty in their production of All Fall Down. Melanie had the ideal equine candidate, Vigilante, who she had hand reared from birth and who had already had experience of showing off his tricks to an audience. She developed a rapport with Marie-Lou who was was cast as the main character in the production and they have been working together ever since.
Marie-Louise is a professional dance artist, performer & teacher living and creating work in Gloucestershire She works with Peter Anderson in Last Legs Dance Theatre a performance company that combine dance, theatre, spoken word & music to deliver high quality contemporary performance for a varirty of projects. Previously Marie-Louise danced with Swerve Dance Theatre, a professional contemporary dance company based at Natonal Dance Agency Swindon Dance. She has been a choreographer and core performer with Curious Company since 2007 co creating themed and beautifully costumes shows for events, fectivals and high profile clients. An experienced vintage song and dance entertainer her double act The Mary Lou Revue act is hugely popular and has gained a reputation as being engaging top class entertainment recieving Arts Council funding in March 2019. Marie-Louise danced with all female tap dance company Sole Rebel Tap who she toured with across the UK in three different shows. 1994 - 2002 Marie-Louise performed with internationally renown and ground breaking site-specific dance company Seven Sisters Group (London) performing at The Royal Festival Hall. The National Theatre, The Royal Opera House, St Pancreas Chambers, Selfridges, The Place Theatre & in Seven Sisters signiture peice Train Station in London and Europe. She spent a few years after this working in Girona with Cataln dance company El Paller performing dance improvisation. contact dance & instant compostion performances. Marie-Louise has worked extensively as a freelance dance artist and physical theatre performer including projects with some fine dance makers & theatre directors including Serena Bobowski ( Shunt Theatre ) Yael Flexer (Bedlam Dance) Rosie Lee & Peter Anderson, Lila Dialo, ( Random Dance Company ) Mark Brew ( Candoco Dance Company) Robert Hilton, Helen Crocker ( Circomedia ) Andrew Tidmarsh ( RSC & RADA ) Mehrdad Seyf & Claire Summerfiled (30 Bird Theatre Company ) Paul Milton (Artistic Director The Cheltenham Everyman) Her work in the enetertainment feild has taken her across the UK and abroad working for Star Cruise Ships Asia, BBC, Harrods, Harvey Nichols, Pierre Cardin, Yves St Laurent too name a few. She has entertained at a host of celebrities parties, award ceremonies, fim premiers and music concerts, includes work for Jarvis Cocker, Sparks & The Bikini Beach Band. Marie-Louise recieved a Dance UK Award as an inspiring leader of the future in 2014, She was semi- finalist in The Place Prize Choreography Awards 2005 and was nominated for a Total Theatre Award in 2007 for Edingburgh show A lot of Nerve. She has been awarded Arts Council funding and gained many comissions for a range of cross arts collaborations and projects of her own between 2004 - 2014 most noteblyTextiles in Performance, Better Red Than Dead, Limelight & Lunacy Tour, Beyond The Surface & Cast Aside - Camille Claudel.