A couple of weeks ago I taught a Big Dance workshop with the Year 12 BTEC Dance students at Suffolk One College in Ipswich. It was a brilliant workshop, all the students worked really hard and creatively, and teaching them was a pleasure.
The class teacher Michael Platt, one of the most inspirational teachers I’ve ever come across, asked me to lead a workshop that was Kathak based as the students were currently studying a module titled ‘International Dance’. This was a perfect fit for Big Dance as this year’s choreography was from a Kathak based and influenced choreographer; Akram Khan.
We spent the morning trying out foot placements and patterns, arm and hand gestures and classical kathak turns. I asked the students to explore some of the ideas we had tried out and set some small choreography individually.
We then spent time learning the Big Dance Pledge material – the students were amazing and picked it up so quickly.
After all the experimentation I thought it would be lovely to ask the students to add in flavours of the Kathak style movement they had produced into the pledge movement. The picture below shows the 2nd section of the Big Dance Pledge, the cleansing section, with the students trying different hand gestures and positions.
Fantastic work Suffolk One!
Anna and I, who are leading Big Dance workshops across East Anglia, have a few more workshops booked in at the end of June and beginning of July. I cannot wait to teach some more amazing participants. We’re currently working with the Performance Groups at DanceEast in Ipswich for an upcoming performance of the Big Dance, and it’s looking great on so many varying groups already. Keep here for more news!