In the mood for dancing? Join Greenwich Dance at Charlton House

Classes in the Old Library (Photo: Chris Nash)

As Greenwich Dance celebrate their first anniversary at Charlton House, Chief Exec Melanie Precious tells The Charlton Champion about their upcoming plans…

The organisation has changed a fair bit since its days at The Borough Hall in Greenwich, and slowly but surely we are putting down new roots and building new programmes from our beautiful new Jacobean base!

We are now a smaller team and no longer have our own dance studio, but as tenants of the Royal Greenwich Heritage Trust we do have access to Charlton House’s beautiful spaces and gardens, which we have been filling with movement and colour – and we have many more treats in store.

Youth dance class (Photo: Daniel Martin)

Here at Greenwich Dance we believe that everyone can dance regardless of age, experience or background. We run dance classes for adult beginners and improvers on a Wednesday evening, and attendance is growing steadily. In fact, you have already missed out on our very popular Adult Contemporary Ballet class – so do book for next term if you fancy it! But there are still spaces in our Adult Lindy Hop class, it is a joyous way to get fit – particularly if you have caught the Strictly Come Dancing bug! 

Dancing to the Music of Time class (Photo: Rob Baker Ashton)

And if you think your dancing days are done, we can also prove you wrong! Every Friday we have the over 55’s creative dance class Dancing to the Music of Time led by Maria Ghoumrassi which is a pure joy to behold. This group of dancers are very close to our hearts – many have been dancing with us for over 10 years. Many of our attendees say how important dance is within their lives for well-being and friendship. Maria, who is much loved by the class, has a magical way of engaging and supporting the dancers, encouraging them to move as gently or as energetically as they feel on the day. 

Our Dancing to the Music of Time class members also create and rehearse together in preparation for performances at festivals and events around the borough. You may have caught them at the Maryon Park Big Picnic in the summer and they are not to be missed!

Youth dance class (Photo: Daniel Martin)

We also have a free dance activity programme for young people aged 8-19, funded by Charlton Athletic Community Trust and the Royal Borough of Greenwich. This takes places at venues all over the borough, including Tramshed in Woolwich, LSEC Greenwich Park campus at Kings Place and Middle Park Community Centre. Young people have the opportunity to gain an Arts Award and also work towards auditioning for the Lotus Youth Dance Company. We will be adding more venues in April 2020 including Charlton House.

Part of our new vision as an organisation is to do more work within the community, and we will soon be launching our touring season Up My Street which will bring high quality, professional dance and social events to community centres around the borough. Our Spring 2020 season will take the form of relaxed cabarets: mixing community performances with professional artists against a backdrop of conversation, food and socialising. A great way to meet your neighbours!

Maryon Park 8 Ed Simmons
Dance class at the Maryon Park Big Picnic (Photo: Ed Simmons)

Last but certainly not least, on the 9th of November we will be having a wine-tasting event at Charlton House. Hosted by Greenwich’s Theatre of Wine, and within the grandeur of the Old Library, the audience will be able to sample eight delicious wines paired with a smorgasbord of delectable dance. Do book your ticket and come along to support us, and bring a full purse for the raffle!

If you have any questions or want to know more about Greenwich Dance, do join our mailing list and follow us on social media, You are also welcome to pop in and see us – we will put the kettle on! See you soon!

The Charlton Champion provides news and information about issues and events in London SE7.
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