Spring Intensive 2021: your responses
Between 7-11 April, The Royal Ballet School held its first hybrid Spring Intensive, offering in-person and virtual classes. Despite the challenges of the pandemic, the School successfully hosted 91 participants at White Lodge, with participants both boarding and attending classes at this location. At the same time, the School held online classes and talks for 648 participants from across the globe.
Our Spring Intensive is for children aged 10 – 15 years old and this year’s Spring Intensive featured a range of dance classes including repertoire, classical, contemporary, street, character and pointe. There were also Pilates classes and talks on nutrition as part of our Healthy Dancer Programme.
In order for the School’s in-person Intensive to go ahead during the pandemic, we put a number of measures in place to keep participants and staff safe from COVID-19.
Our Head of Intensive Courses & International Relations, Samira Saidi, explains:
Registration for this year’s Spring Intensive was certainly interesting! Students had to arrive with a PCR declaration certificate, we then had to have lateral flows tests for each child, and we did in-car registration. We also had a day of further testing during the course. All the students were in bubbles and they stuck to their bubbles throughout the five days. Teachers have had to keep socially distanced from the students, the floors are all marked out with tape so the teachers know where they can safely teach from.
Attendees at White Lodge predominantly came from the UK, however with these measures in place, we had attendees from the United States, Japan, Spain, Italy, Germany, Belgium, Lithuania and the Czech Republic.
Here are some of your responses to our in-person Spring Intensive 2021:
‘My highlights include the whole atmosphere and reality of dancing in the amazing studios of White Lodge. Being accompanied by the live pianist everyday was special. I loved the Royal Ballet teaching methods, and being surrounding by all the other like-minded ballerinas. I feel I’ve gained more confidence, a love for the atmosphere, and strengthened both my body and technique.’
‘I had a wonderful experience and thoroughly enjoyed my five nights at White Lodge. The facilities were excellent, my confidence and self-discipline in dance has improved and I now appreciate other forms of dance.’
‘It was brilliant. I was really nervous but I was put at ease straight away by the man at the gate who made some jokes and made me laugh. I loved dancing in such an incredible place and the teachers were amazing. In the evenings we had fun activities and I made lots of friends. I thought I would be homesick but I wasn’t at all! I really want to come back again!’
‘The Spring Intensive was the best week ever. The standard of teaching was amazing and I thoroughly enjoyed taking on corrections and getting to dance in the fantastic studios. The staff were all so friendly and made everyone feel so relaxed. It was so much fun and I know I have made friends for life. Thank you for a fantastic opportunity! I really enjoyed my week.’
‘I really enjoyed working with the teachers. My favourite classes were rep and solos. I loved meeting and connecting with other students of my age and found the course very eye-opening in respect of what I need to improve further. I thoroughly enjoyed my few days and felt I have improved from the learning experience.’
‘I gained confidence after a challenging year and felt inspired again to follow my passion. A particular highlight was the pointe/solos because it was challenging, but in a positive way, and I love to learn new repertoire. I also really enjoyed doing Pilates at the end of a tiring day.’
‘I really enjoyed getting to know all the other students and the house parents were so nice and helpful. The classes were amazing and the teachers were all fantastic, I really loved this experience and I’m going to miss everyone there.’
‘I loved every minute of it. The teachers were so knowledgeable and inspiring, the live piano music was uplifting, the beautiful studios and the magnificent surroundings helped it to be the most magical experience. And on top of that I met so many new friends and had so much fun!’
Here are some of your responses to our online Spring Intensive 2021:
‘This course boosted my motivation to stay focused during this hard time.’
‘I had such an amazing experience! I felt like I learned so much from the classical and contemporary teachers. The classes were very easy to book and access using the Zoom links, and it was an overall seamless experience with the technology.’
‘It was a very positive experience, I had lots of fun doing the intensive and was quite sad that it had to end. I am so grateful that I was able to take classes from amazing teachers at The Royal Ballet School! It was an amazing experience!’
‘Really loved the contemporary class with the drumming – such a good class for doing in a home environment without much room – great style. Wonderful to be able to do from the other side of the world – please do more!’
‘Having ballet classes with such incredible teachers is a wonderful experience. The classes are very clear, it is very well organized and it is an opportunity for students who do not live in London to be able to see a little of what The Royal Ballet School is.’
‘The online experience exceeded expectations on all fronts. The teaching was excellent, delivery was clear and accessible despite being on Zoom. A really fantastic way to experience Royal Ballet teaching and a sneak peek into the White Lodge studios!’