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The dance theatre legend passes away


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Pina Bausch

Pina Bausch sadly died on the 30th of June 2009 aged 63. I went to her sell out performance in  Sadlers Wells last year which was incredible. As all dance students I was taught about her work and the way she introduced the world to dance theatre, fusing humour and strong power messages. Unfortunately I did not get to see her company Tanztheatre Wuppertal (founded in 1973) until 2008. I am so glad I witnessed such an epic occasion. We were hoping that she would be there but could not make it in the end as she was unwell. Apparently she had only just hung up her dancing shoes two weeks before the stint at Sadlers Wells! Pina Bausch

Seeing her company in the flesh was an amazing experience. With a standing applaud, looking around at the audience, there was not one person in the theatre who was not blown away by the two pieces (Cafe Muller and Rite of Spring).  My favourite was the Rite of Spring which totally blew me away. The power of the choreography and energy of the dancers was quite literally tangible! I have never felt that kind of all encompassing atmosphere in a theatre before and can still feel it now as I look back.

A great artistic mind, a great dancer, a great pioneer and a great lady. Her influence has shaped what we see at the theatre and I am very grateful for that! Watch the below videos on some of her most epic pieces.



Pina Bausch

National Dance Competition


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Have YOU got the Bone Factor? NOS

The National Osteoporosis Society and Craig Revel Horwood launch national dance competition for primary school children. 

Win an exclusive dance lesson from Craig Revel Horwood to help children prevent bone problems in later life.Craig Revel Horwood

 Celebrity dance judge Craig Revel Horwood is calling all primary school teachers and children to enter a national dance competition and win their place on the first ever Bone Factor Tour in October! Winning schools receive an action packed day to help build stronger bones, with a dance lesson from Craig and exciting nutritional activities.

Craig Revel Horwood comments, “I’ve teamed up with the National Osteoporosis Society for the second year because dance is a great form of exercise, and a fun way to teach children the importance of keeping their bones healthy. We are inviting primary schools from across the country to join the Bone Factor challenge and compete for a chance to Boogie for their Bones on tour with me. So if you think you’ve got the Bone Factor then get dancing, because the search is on!”

The dance judge has teamed up with the National Osteoporosis Society once again as part of the charity’s Bones4Life programme. The initiative encourages primary school children to learn how to look after their bones from a young age, which is vital in ensuring they remain strong and healthy later in life. Last year, Craig worked with the charity to get dance schools to Boogie for their Bones. This year, Craig Revel Horwood and the Bone Factor Tour are targeting primary schools with their health messages and fun dance routine.

The Bone Factor Tour encourages children to get dancing from a young age, and Craig has created fantastic Boogie for your Bones dance steps and a dance plan and video to help explain the moves! Dance is a great form of weight-bearing exercise that builds bone strength from a young age. It’s also great fun! 

Entering the Bone Factor Tour competition is easy. Schools simply send in a recording of their own Boogie for Your Bones dance that uses some of the steps available on www.bones4life.org/bonefactor. The entries can be a few photographs or a video and will be judged by Craig. Six lucky primary schools will earn their place on the tour for an unforgettable day about bone health.  The Bone Factor Tour team will be visiting schools during the week of World Osteoporosis Day, on 20th October 2009. Entries will be judged regionally and chosen according to strict judging criteria.

All entries must be received by Friday 25th September 2009 and sent to: boogieforyourbones@goodrelations.co.uk, or post to: Bone Factor Tour competition, Good Relations, 26 Southampton Buildings, London, WC2A 1PQ.


Imperial Society of Teachers of Dancing – Theatre Faculties Congress @ Laban


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ISTD Imperial Society of Teachers of DancingTheatre Faculties Congress @ Laban

This year the Theatre Faculties Congress was held at Laban (London) which, following the success of last year, the ISTD felt it was a well suited venue and had great adaptability for the needs of this diverse and large scale Congress.

Once again the Congress was a huge success and the variety of the lectures, demonstrations and workshops were impressive. The day was run with a high level of professionalism but also offering a lovely open and personal approach as the presenters and lecturers created a fun and welcoming atmosphere to all.


I attended five sessions on the day which included:

Tap class by Douglas Mills – Excellent, great fun! Amazing tapper and choreographer. (Tap Faculty)

Classical Greek: A Musical Approach  – Ancient to Modern by Amanda Wilkins and Carol Vasko – Fantastic! Incredibly informative, well presented and beautiful dancing! (Classical Greek Faculty)

Classical Ballet: Demonstration Class Year 11 Girls from White Lodge with Diane Von Schoor – Talented young dancers taught by an incredible and entertaining teacher. An eye opener into the training of young ballet professionals. (Imperial Ballet and Cecchetti Faculty)

National Dance: A Polish Experience by Wlodek Lesiecki – Two words describe the presenter ….. interesting and crazy! This was a lot of fun to watch, mainly because of the way it was presented and taught. Not perhaps the most conventional way of teaching, but a nice change from the norm! (National Dance Faculty)

Kathak Workshop by Urja Desai Thakore  – Excellent as we got chance to have one on one tution with Urja Desai Thakore! She was also very articulate in answering the questions the audience threw at her. (South Asian Faculty)

Classical GreekISTD Cassical Greek

My personal favourite from the day was the Classical Greek lecture and demonstration.  I had never atcually seen any Classical Greek dance before then and was totally blown away! Four styles of Classical Greek was shown and explained. The first being Lyrical which was very exspressive, worshipful and elegant. The movements were heavily linked with the music and orginally back in Accient Greece, the dance would have been accompinied by live singers. The physicality was incredible. Clearly strength, balance and great flexibilty is needed to perform this style well. Alot of back work and spinal curves were involved in the chorerograhy. You could also see Balletic and Release style qualities (Release technique from the Contemporary Dance).

The second style was Bacchic. This style represents the extremes of human nature. The movements looked animal-esque! The dancers were transformed through the movements into dark and grotesque looking creatures!

The Tragic style was very emotional and perhaps a more maturer way of moving as the dancers had to really engage in what they are dancing for and the story that they were trying to portray. Classical Greek

Last of all was the Piric style. This movement vocabulary is drawn from the days of war and battle. Props such as swords and sheilds were used to convey the intensity and the physicality of battle.

It is easy to see how Classical Greek can enhance a dancer’s way of movement and control. The technique encompeses many qualities and skills which are crucial for many forms of dance inculding Ballet and Contempory. The performances which were shown were beautiful and totally engaged / connected with the audience throughout.

Classical Greek

If you have not seen any Classical Greek  or would like to know more about it then visit the ISTD Classical Greek’s website and have a read. There are many ISTD schools which offer lessons in Classical Greek and I would definatly recommend having ago!

Brand new Ballet shoe!


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Pointe work

One of my tutors at Laban(Dr Matt Wyon) has spent the last 7 years developing this Ballet shoe which not only protects your ankles and consequently your joints, but makes a pionte work comfortable!

Have a look at the below link. If you are a ballet dancer this is definitely something to check out and seriously consider investing in. Not only does it banish the blisters but help to keep your body healthy and perform to your best!


Dance Medicine: the female athlete triad and hypermobility


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OverviewDance Medicine: female athlete triad and hypermobility

The day was set in the Royal Society of Medicine which was a fantastic back drop. The building and the conference room was laid out beautifully with fantastic portraits of the great figures in medicine. The food was great and refreshments served throughout the day. There was a lovely atmosphere where around 80 people involved or interested in the Dance Science and Medicine industries gathered. I saw some old friends and tutors there which was lovely and met a handful of new experts who hopefully I will be working with at some point.

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