Children are encouraged to acquire as many skills as possible throughout their childhood. They learn to play instruments, play sports, dance and act, but what happens to the majority of these fortunate multi-skilled children when they become adults? After school there is always university where there is often an abundance of music, sports and performance societies. However after leaving education all the skills that were an integral part of growing up are easily lost due to the lack of adult classes and clubs in which to hone them. This is especially true for those trained in dance.
Hundreds of children go to dance schools in the evenings and at the weekends. They tirelessly work through the grades of ballet, modern and tap, take part in festivals, summer schools and dance shows. Time, effort and money are spent on becoming the best dancer possible. There are even some of us who go to professional dance schools such as Tring Park, Elmhurst, The English National Ballet School, The Royal Ballet School and Central School of Ballet and then decide not to pursue a dance career. In this latter case the student leaves the dance school with a professional dance qualification, having danced for at least 6 hours a day for 2 or 3 years and still with a passion for all things dance related. The move away from such disciplined training for both types of dancer mentioned is difficult as there are so few classes for adults outside the professional dance world, leaving hundreds of trained dancers unable to continue practising an art that they are passionate about.
This blog will provide details of places that I have discovered across the UK that do provide good quality free-work classes and teaching. It will mainly be based on ballet but will from time to time include jazz, contemporary and tap classes. There may not be many dance classes out there for trained adult dancers (there are more for beginners!) so it is worth knowing the good ones from the bad!
Map of the dance schools I will be reviewing in future posts.