A children’s summer school for dance and stand up comedy has been a brilliant success. Run by Blaze Dance Academy in Dance HQ’s studios at Glasgow Green’s famous Templeton Carpet Factory building, the eight young performers confidently showed what they’d learned at this week’s sessions.
Aged around 9, they cracked jokes, performed comedy sketches of their own devising and danced with discipline and good energy.
Said comedy tutor Mark Robertson: ‘There was talent in every single one of them. We guided and pushed but the ideas came from them through a little brainstorming.’
Blaze founder Susan Elena said: ‘I learned things from them and I’ve been running dance schools for ten years! Their abilities and ideas far outweighed anything we expected.’
Said Marcus Hyka (9): ‘The teachers were really fun and cool. This was great to do and I’ve made lots of friends.’ His Mum Lesley commented: ‘He really enjoyed the sessions. He was nervous at first but this has boosted his confiedence.’
Added Anne Lawson (9): ‘I really enjoyed myself and liked the experience of learning to dance. One of the best things was just making friends.’
The Blaze Dance Academy is having a free enrolment day on Saturday 20 August from 12 noon till 4pm when youngsters from three upwards can join the autumn classes. There will be a choice of ballet, tap, modern, street and contemporary dance. Students can also aim for the Intermediate 2 SQA certificate as the Academy now has accreditation to teach to that level.
Susan Elana said after the summer school’s performance: ‘It is an surprising fact but more people dance in Scotland than play football.’ And the Blaze Dance Academy aims to add to their number.
See their website: www.blazedance.co.uk. The young performers were: Marsha Cates, Ellie Dickson, Marcus Hyka, Anne Lawson, Alex Mc Donach, Andrew McDonach, Euan McDonach and Lewis Webster.
Following the hugely successful productions of Cinderella and The Sleeping Beauty, Scottish Ballet are reviving Artistic Director Ashley Page’s The Nutcracker.
It tells the story of Marie who, on Christmas eve, hears how a brave young man saves a Princess from a horrible curse. As Marie sleeps, she is transported into a surreal dream world where she learns to fend for herself and discovers the secret of true love.
This fresh and vivid re-telling of the famous Christmas story features stunning sets and costumes, breathtaking choreography, Tchaikovsky’s famous score played live by the Scottish Ballet Orchestra and the phenomenally talented dancers of Scotland’s national dance company.
The LOCAL NEWS GLASGOW has a pair of tickets to give away for The Nutcracker. To be in with a chance of winning, simply answer this question: Who wrote the music for The Nutcracker?
The prize is a pair of tickets for the ballet at the Theatre Royal Glasgow at 7.30pm on Monday 21 December.
Answer by email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Include your name, address and phone contact. Please write ‘Nutcracker comp’ in the header field. Snailmail to Nutcracker comp, Local News Glasgow, YAM Publications Ltd, 73 Robertson Street, Glasgow G2 8QD.
All entries must be with us by 9am on Friday 18 December. For further information see the website: www.scottishballet.co.uk. or call the box office on: 0870 060 6647 Tickets from £9 (matinee).
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Pupils at Blackfriars Primary School in the Gorbals have been on the ball and on their toes recently during busy mornings of physical activity.
Primary 5 pupils were put through their paces by Scottish Rugby Union coach Thomas Davidson and then by Scottish Ballet tutor Emma-Jane McHenry.
The talent scout project, Balletbuzz, enables children with potential to be spotted and to attend a short course that could lead to further teaching.
Headteacher John Lawson said: ‘All pupils have been up for the challenge. The rugby coaching warmed the children up for our ballet class. Strength and stamina are required for both disciplines.
‘This clearly shows that this generation don’t carry the baggage of stereotypes. Neither the boys nor the girls batted an eyelid at being asked to take part in the activities. The school believes in giving the pupils a chance to experience as many things as possible, so they can achieve their potential.’
Scottish Ballet moves to its new home at Tramway at the end of this month. And it flits in the knowledge that the final £1million needed to meet the £11 million total cost of the purpose built headquarters has been reached.
Broadcaster Kirsty Wark launched an appeal for the final £1million in September 2007. She appealed to the public for their backing to help Scottish Ballet reach its target to create a new home at Tramway for Scotland’s national dance company.
By the beginning of this month, less than two years on, Scottish Ballet was announced the success of the appeal and extended a ‘huge thank you ‘to everyone who helped.
Said Patron Kirsty,‘It’s a terrific moment and a real tribute to everyone involved with the fundraising effort. This helps develop a national asset that we can all enjoy and of which we can be very proud.’
Niall Scott, Chairman of the Tramway Appeal Committee added: ‘I am delighted that Scottish Ballet has achieved this very significant milestone. The magnificent support from public and Trusts alike for the Tramway Appeal is testament to the company’s achievements and is a huge boost to everyone connected with the project.’
Cindy Sughrue, Chief Executive/Executive Producer at Scottish Ballet, ‘We are thrilled to have reached our £1 million target. It’s been extremely heartening to see the breadth of people who have made donations. Although many are long-term supporters of Scottish Ballet, there are even more who are new to us and have been inspired tomake a donation because what the new facilities will mean for Glasgow and for Scotland. It’s touched the imaginations and lives of a far wider range of people than we expected.’
At the Tramway, the company will be able to fulfil its full potential as Scotland’s national dance company with room to further develop its award-winning repertoire, groundbreaking education programme and open up new partnerships and perspectives.
On the Southside the B listed Tramway building in Albert Drive will be the way ballet lovers will access the new Scottish Ballet building which is virtually an extension to the Tramway exhibition and theatre space. But the new HQ will be clearly identifiable from Pollokshaws Road. Lead designer Malcolm Fraser Architects has produced a bespoke new building providing, rehearsal studios, practice rooms, wardrobe provision, administration offices and technical facilities.
In a happy partnership with Glasgow City Council, the Tramway and the Hidden Gardens, Scottish Ballet has been in pole position to develop their new headquarters to provide 21st century facilities for dancers, staff and the audience.
This year marks the 40th anniversary of Scottish Ballet and a special photographic exhibition will run throughout September to show some of the highlights along the way. An anniversary coffee table book will be available to buy.