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You can watch umpteen performance of Swan Lake or The Nutcracker in the theatre and think you understand it. You try to dance little bits of it yourself as I have also done and your realize just how little you know. However, the next time you watch the bit that that you have tried to learn you appreciate the ballet so much more.
My opportunity to learn some repertoire came from Jane Tucker who is one of my teachers at Northern Ballet. Since August 2015 Jane has run intensive workshops for adult ballet students on Swan Lake, Romeo and Juliet, La Bayadere and The Nutcracker, all of which I have attended and described in this blog. It is very hard work. You start with floor exercises at 10:00, then 90 minutes of class, then wall to wall rehearsals until the late afternoon when you take part in a show. You stagger out of the Dancehouse theatre into your car or train and soak in a hot bath followed by a cold shower to break down the lactic acid in your weary limbs.
But the sense of achievement afterwards is immense.
I was therefore delighted to read the following announcement on Karen Sant's Facebook page:
"*** 1 DAY BALLET WORKSHOPS! ***
Saturday 8th April - Advanced Ballet
Saturday 15th April - Beginners/ Pre Intermediate Ballet
The Dancehouse Theatre, Manchester
£60 (£20 deposit included in the price payable ASAP)
10am - 4pm
Jane Tucker (Northern Ballet Theatre)
TBC - Please keep your suggestions coming of what ballet you'd like your repertoire to be from!
We need 20 students to be able to hold the workshop.
Please comment below if you'd like me to book you in. You will receive a registration form and info pack shortly after.
The days will consist of a warm up session, ballet class, stretching class, repertoire and a short performance at the end of the day. A more in depth timetable will be announced soon.
Hope to see lots of you there, it's always been great fun!
Karen never has any trouble filling her intensive workshops. The announcement appeared yesterday and she has already had 9 "likes" or "loves". Jane is a great teacher who has danced some of the roles herself with Northern Ballet and other companies. She brings her experience as a performer to her class.
The Dancehouse studios are about 200 yards from Oxford Road railway station. If you came by car there is a multistorey car park in the same block as the studios offering all day parking at a discount on Saturdays. If you want to book a place, contact Karen through Facebook, send her an email at firstname.lastname@example.org or call her on 07783 103 037.