By Lina Kurdi
A dance school is celebrating its new headquarters by hosting a full day of free events and open auditions for young budding dancers to attend the academy on a bursary.
The Royal Academy of Dance (RAD) has announced it is opening a new headquarters in York Road, Battersea.
During its housewarming event on Sunday, May 8, RAD will be holding open auditions for its new bursary scheme, which will provide three local budding dancers aged between four and 17 with the opportunity to have tuition fees and uniform costs covered for one year, at a total of £1,500.
The auditions will be judged by a panel of dance professionals led by RAD President, Dame Darcey Bussell.
Dame Darcey said: “I am so looking forward to welcoming our local community into their new home for dance and to seeing the talent we have here in Wandsworth.
“I have experienced how dance can transform lives, making us happier and healthier and I cannot wait to share this with you.
“I look forward to meeting everyone at the Royal Academy of Dance in May – I will be looking for enthusiastic young dancers who are excited to learn and move more.”
RAD artistic director Gerard Charles said: “At the Royal Academy of Dance, we believe that everybody can dance, and it is our mission to ensure that as many people as possible have the opportunity to do so.
“I am so thrilled that we are launching this new bursary scheme, which will allow more students to be a member of our dance school community at our incredible new building in Battersea.”
The full day of activities will start at 10am and run until 4 pm.
The activities include a wide range of dance taster workshops from ballet and creative dance to hip hop and African dance.
There will be a film screening of Making of Othello from 3.30pm until 4pm, as well as scavenger hunts and arts and crafts.
The new £19.5 million building is 60,000sq ft and includes enhanced education and training facilities for students and teachers, seven large dance studios, a café and a shop.
The headquarters will be home to The Aud Jebsen Studio Theatre, a 193-seat performance space, which will showcase the talent of local companies as well as RAD’s dancing talent.
For more information about the RAD housewarming activities and open auditions, including how to sign up for auditions, visit: https://www.homefordance.org/
Pictured top: Step Into Dance’s annual celebration of Hip Hope Dance ‘Battle Educate’ held at Mountview, Peckham on December 14, 2019 (Picture: Foteini Christofilopoulou)