Socially-distanced outdoor ballet hits Chichester

Dance has returned to Chichester with a socially-distanced ballet class.

By Phil Hewitt
Tuesday, 16th June 2020, 3:21 pm
Ballet... 2020 style
Ballet... 2020 style

Rosemary Bell, of the Rosemary Bell Academy of Dance in central Chichester, has enjoyed a little hint of normality.

“For the first time since closing our school on March 20, I taught some of my Royal Academy of Dance grade 6’s in a large outdoor space.

“Since our closure all of our classes have been taught via Zoom which has thankfully enabled us to continue dancing through lockdown.

“Although teaching remotely has been vital to the school’s continuation, it does not compare to the wonderful experience that dancers get from learning together. In class there is a magical atmosphere and energy that comes from our dancers being together which is not captured on a Zoom call.

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    “Our recent outdoor class enabled students to see their friends in person and to move freely without having to reduce movements in a much smaller indoor living space.

    “When the dancers dance together they gain a feeling of unity and connection with their peers which has been a huge positive when they have been separated physically for so long. Our students’ well-being is of high priority and being able to offer them a positive experience in a difficult time has been very rewarding.

    “For the time being our classes will predominantly continue via Zoom but as lockdown restrictions begin to ease I will offer more outdoor classes across all of our pupils who are aged three to adult. Slowly we will work towards returning to the studio but until then we will adhere to all social distancing rules to protect our students and their families.

    “I have felt very proud of our young dancers’ ability to adapt to learning in this new way. It takes great discipline to exercise at home but the majority of our students continue to take regular classes.

    “Their resilience and ability to adapt has been hugely humbling for me as their teacher. They are the reason that we continue to strive towards excellence in what has been a time of sacrifice for all. I hope that by offering our online classes it has given parents and children a little normailty to their weekly schedule.”


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