Natalie Ayton leads a dance workshop

Interview with Natalie Ayton

15 June 2017

For the first time, our popular School Holiday Workshops will cater for beginner dancers from 5 – 16 years. Natalie is one of the incredible teachers who will introduce young dancers to movement and encourage them to explore their own creativity.

Natalie is an internationally respected dancer, choreographer and teacher, and is known for her ability to connect with her students and nurture their love of dance.

When/how did you start dancing?

I started dancing when I was three years old. I used to dance around the house all the time, so my mum decided we should channel that energy into some lessons.  I started with Ballet and then when I was older trained at the Rambert School and London Dance College in England.

What’s your favourite dance memory?

My favourite memory is when I danced in the 2008 handover ceremony for the China to the London Olympics. I performed on the red bus which travelled around the stadium with members of the Royal Ballet, Can Do Co and Zoo Nation, dancing in front of thousands and televised across the world.

Why do children love to dance? And what are the benefits of dance for kids?

Children love to dance because it’s a real freedom of expression. Movement is inherent to human beings and children tap into that very naturally.  The benefits of dance are obviously the physical benefits – strength, flexibility and coordination. But also it is a lovely form of communication. It teaches children to learn by watching and listening. Children also develop collaboration skills as they share their own creative ideas with each other.

What will your Beginner Dance Workshops cover?

I will be teaching the Contemporary element of the Beginner dance workshops and we will be introducing young people to Contemporary dance.  Through a range of fun activities we will use our bodies and imagination to create new movement.

What’s one piece of advice you received that influenced your dancing?

Ignite your internal passion. Don’t always think about how you look but about how you feel. That advice really connected with me as it unlocked the meaning of dance for me personally.

Beginner Dance Workshop (12 – 16 years)
Monday 10 – Tuesday 11 July, 10am – 4pm

Beginner Dance Workshop (8 – 11 years)
Wednesday 12 – Thursday 13 July, 10am – 4pm

Beginner Dance Workshop (5 – 7 years)
Friday 14 July, 10am – 3pm

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