Flash mobs, hip hop, salsa and ballroom set to get 20,000 people on their feet with Big Dance 2012 (From News Shopper)
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Flash mobs, hip hop, salsa and ballroom set to get 20,000 people dancing in south east London
Breaking out into spontaneous dance is usually something people only do in the movies.
But forget Glee and Mary Poppins – life itself is about to become very much like a West End musical in south east London.
More than 30 venues, some rather unlikely, will be part of the biggest ever celebration of dance across Greenwich, Lewisham, Bromley and Bexley.
Parks, libraries, museums, schools, high streets and double-decker buses will be home to over 50 workshops, performances, dance picnics, cabarets and master classes between May 18 and July 15.
Greenwich Dance, who are leading the regional hub for London-wide Big Dance 2012, hopes more than 20,000 people will get involved in at least one (predominantly free) activity - whether it be ballroom, hip hop or salsa - over the summer.
Caron Loudy, artistic programme manager, said: “Big Dance is about taking dancing to unusual settings and engaging everyone in dance.
“There’s something for everyone.
“I like engaging people who would not normally turn up to a theatre or dance class.
“Once they see dancing they want to join in the workshops.
“The look on people’s faces when they are having so much fun and engaging as a community, trying something new, that’s what I like about it.”
Part of the London 2012 Festival, the focus is on open air events and iconic places.
Greenwich Dance has commissioned Luca Silvestrini’s Protein, its award-winning resident company, to create an open air performance called The Picnic.
The shows, in which everyone can join in, will take place at Trinity Laban in Deptford, the Greenwich World Cultural Festival at Eltham Palace, the Horniman Museum in Forest Hill and the Big Dance Carnival at Crystal Palace Park.
Caron added: “The other really exciting moment is our Big Dance Bus.
“It’s a two-story double-decker which will be in the high street in Bexley with a dance floor opened up in front of it for four hours of performances.”
As well as encouraging passers-by and families to take part in some of the countless and varied activities, Greenwich Dance has been recruiting hundreds of dancers to perform during the eight-week festival.
Caron continued: “We are doing mass recruiting here at the moment.
“We have people aged from seven-years-old to 80-something taking part.
“We are recruiting a huge cast and creating a piece for an audience, taking dance into places where we know there will already be lots of people.
“Hopefully they’ll put their shopping down and come to a dance workshop.”
Big Dance 2012 will culminate in a huge performance by around 1,000 people from all over the capital in Trafalgar Square in July.
People in Greenwich, Lewisham, Bromley and Bexley can take part by learning the steps (choreographed by Wayne McGregor CBE) at one of the workshops, or online.
The phenomenal event kicks off at Greenwich Dance with a family cabaret on Saturday May 19.
For the full programme visit greenwichdance.org.uk