2016 was a great time to be in a Shropshire primary school when we arranged for a variety of fun activities based around folk dance and music to take place as part of the All Together Now programme.
This included rapper sword dancing – always a popular activity – clog dancing, flamenco, Indian Kathak, African contemporary and even a bit of hip hop.
More than 1,000 children took part and one child was overheard to say that his participation in the rapper sword workshop “was the best day of his life” (wow!), and we could see by their faces and their laughter just how much fun was had. We hope their experience will be something to remember and cherish for a long time, they are, after all, our folk performers and folk supporters of the future.
Of course, it wasn’t just the children who enjoyed the dance activities. Teachers at Worthen School became actively involved and have also supported the beginnings of a new junior rapper side. The superb dance and music artists were rewarded to see how the children became more confident and disciplined as the workshops and performances progressed.
This film shows some behind the scenes footage from rehearsals and workshops, with comments from teachers and artists:
All Together Now in Shropshire schools project film:
We are very grateful to all the artists who took part for making this project work so well:
- Hannah James
- Damien Barber, Demon Barbers & Breaking Tradition Artists
- Ana Garcia & Mark Brown
- Sonia Sabri Dance Company
- ACE African Contemporary Dance, Birmingham
- Lucy Huzzard
A special mention for Alexa Pugh at Shropshire Council and Izzy MacLachlan, Shrewsbury Folk Festival Education Director, for both working to coordinate school logistics; to Media Active film artists; and a credit to Sheelanagig for allowing us to use The Manc Monk, a track from Beard Town.