Biography

Born in Walsall, Billy became profoundly Deaf at the age of three. Growing up, he showed a keen interest in music and art. At age eleven Billy first tried out music, and played drums in the school band.

 

It wasn't until the age of 21 that Billy discovered his talent for dance. Already a big Michael Jackson fan, Billy started to learn all of MJ's moves from YouTube videos, and became a self-taught MJ impersonator. Despite no formal training, Billy utilised his self-taught skills to start down the path of becoming a dancer and an artist, forming his own Deaf dance crew, and travelling the world networking with other professional Deaf dancers.

 

Billy is a fresh, exciting choreographer, and an inspiring teacher of dance.

 

"It is never too late to be what you might have been."

–George Eliot

Career Highlights

COMMISSIONS

  • Arts Council England, WE ARE THE REVOLUTION (2021)

  • Arts Council England, Developing Your Creative Practice (2021)

  • Creative Black Country, KINETIC CONNECTIVITY (2020)

  • Arts Council England, FORBIDDEN IDENTITY (2019)

  • Arts Council, B-Side Festival (2019)

  • Arts Council England, SIGN CRIMINAL (2018)

  • UNLIMITED International Collaboration R&D Award, Somebody's Watching Me (2017)

  • Arts Council England, Like Mirabai (2016)

  • Arts Council England, Birmingham Weekender (2015)

  • Arts Council England, International Collaboration with US-based Deaf Dancer (2014)

  • Arts Council England, Deaf Explorer (2013)

DANCE FACILITATOR

  • UK Deaf Sport, #DeafActiveOnline (2020-current)

  • School Residencies around the UK (2019-current)

  • The Complete Freedom Of Truth, Europe (2014-current)

  • Dance Steptacular, Walsall (2017-current)

  • NDCS Raising The Bar, Birmingham & Portsmouth (2015)

 

MUSIC VIDEO / CAMPAIGNS

  • UNSILENCED: Music Video with HAUTE for Parole aux Sourds, commissioned by BETC. Paris, France (2017)

  • CBC: Kinetic Connectivity, Dance Tutorial Videos (2020)

PERFORMER

  • Blue Peter, live performance for Deaf Awareness Week (May 2021)

  • Frontline Arts Festival, Stoke-On-Trent (October 2019)

  • Deaf Rave 15th Anniversary (September 2018)

  • DREAM DANCE International Deaf Dance Showcase, Hong Kong (2016)

  • Deaf Expo, Coimbatore, India (2015)

  • Deaffest Deaf Film Festival, Wolverhampton (2011-2015)

  • Birmingham Weekender, Flashmob in Birmingham City Centre (2015)

  • Bay Area Deaf Dance Festival, San Francisco USA (2014)

  • INCLOODU Festival, London (2013)

  • Festival Clin d'Oeil, Reims, France (2013)

DEF MOTION

Founder / Creative Director

In 2011 Billy founded the all-Deaf dance crew Def Motion. Creating routines and Michael Jackson-inspired choreography, Billy toured the crew around the UK and abroad at various festivals, schools and community events.

Education and Skills

NATD Teacher in Street Dance (2017)

NATD Associate in Street Dance (2016)

Graphic Design BA (Hons)

Wolverhampton University (2012)

BTEC National Diploma in Art Foundation

Walsall College (2008)

A-Levels x3

GCSEs x9 (Grades A-C)

Mary Hare School 1999-2006

Representation
Contact

 

email: billyread88@gmail.com

 

text: +44 7828 718 187

 

Management

 

Alan McLean

Deaf Explorer


email: deafexplorer@gmail.com

mobile: +44 7982 237 163

 

Social Media

 

Twitter:

@DefMotion

Facebook Page: facebook.com/DefMotion

YouTube: Def Motion

Instagram: @defmotion

 

Billy Read: World Traveller

Did you know Billy is also a travel blogger?

 

Head over to BRB | Gone Somewhere Epic to follow Billy's journey across the world in search of epic adventures, hidden gems, natural wonder, and great coffee - all on a budget!

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