Around 30 boys and girls from a primary school in Sunderland took part in an extra special dance festival following professional lessons by leading North East dance organisation Dance City.

Trained dance artist Holly Irving visited St John Bosco Catholic Primary School in Sunderland, part of Bishop Chadwick Catholic Education Trust, to teach year 5 pupils specific dance moves that they performed live in front of their families and friends at Dance City in Newcastle.

The theme of the dance was called ‘Make your Move’ and the children, directed by Holly, produced a modern take on a circus performance which included circus performance skills, costumes and fantastic dance choreography.

Philip Roddy, a teacher at St John Bosco Catholic Primary School, said: “It’s been amazing to work with Dance City for our dance performance and the children have done incredibly well.

“They have really committed themselves to learning the routine and the live show was fantastic, we are so proud of them.

“Holly has provided an hour-long session each week for the last two months and she’s been wonderful with the children, guiding them through the routine and ensuring they were confident and comfortable in their performance.

“Dance is a key part of our physical education curriculum and it’s a great activity for pupils’ wellbeing, both physical and mental.

“The creative and artistic character of dance contributes to our key Personal, Social, Health and Economic (PSHE) activities and encourages and strengthens a child’s sense of identity, belonging and feelings of self-worth.”

The engagement with St John Bosco is part of Dance City’s ‘Make Your Move’ initiative that is focused on working with school children across the North East to encourage and develop a love of dance and celebrate the art form.

Following the performance, every pupil involved achieved an Arts award in recognition of their hard work and commitment in delivering such a sterling show.

Lily, a year 5 pupil at St John Bosco, said: “I was very unsure about doing it to begin with and felt nervous in the build-up, but I am so glad I did. I am really proud of myself for doing it.”

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