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The Jazz Ballet Creative Dance Workshop

Published 5th September 2013, 10:28am

Imagine a school hall on a Saturday morning filled with the buzz and excitement of young people ages 10-25 that have come from near and far to take advantage of a dance workshop. The young ladies are busy adjusting their clothing and hair and the young men quietly sit or stand around marking off their space.

The workshop starts with a warm-up by Miss Melissa McField. It is interesting to watch as some of the moves have been adopted by aerobics instructors. No doubt these are movements that young people have encountered in P.E. classes. After warm-up and some light stretching the second instructor, Dr. Monica Lawrence, addresses the group. She explains to the group the dance they will be learning over the next 45 minutes to an hour.

Young people are engaged in the activity. There is no talking as the instructor introduces one move after another. The more confident or experienced dance students have taken positions on the front row. They basically set the tone and model the intended movements as demonstrated by the instructor. Young people in the middle and back assist each other further by critiquing each otherís form.

Every moment is a teachable one. While the group is standing for water and snack break, Dr. Lawrence imparts some basic dance workshop etiquette Ė during a dance workshop one does not leave the floor, sit on the sidelines or squat on the floor for a break; instead one is expected to participate throughout the workshop. If one does stop then it is understood that in so doing that person will not be allowed to rejoin the group during that particular workshop. He/she might be allowed to sit quietly on the sidelines or expected to remove him/herself entirely from the workshop.

This Dance Workshop was sponsored by The New Self-Help Community Foundation. One of the Foundationís goals is to make a difference in the lives of young people in the Cayman Islands through youth involvement in sports and the arts.