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This month the first Essentially Dance training workshops have taken place in the Seacroft Manston locality.

Supported by Find Your Talent the workshops will equip teachers with the skills to teach ballroom dancing in their own schools – and are part of the National Curriculum Ballroom and Latin American dance resource for Key Stage 1 to 5.

This sustainable approach to professional development means that new knowledge and skills can be shared and embedded within the school’s curriculum and extended services.

The Leeds workshops are taught by Dale Bennett – twin brother of Darren Bennett, star of BBC1’s Strictly Come Dancing.  Due to the success of the hit TV show there has been a huge resurgence of interest in ballroom dancing; its popularity extends to family learning as dancing can be experienced and enjoyed by all age groups.

Teachers from local primary schools including St Theresa’s, Crossgates, Winmoor St Paul’s C of E, Parklands, Methley, Beechwood , Temple Newsam House, and Sharp Lane were involved alongside participants from Parklands Girls High.

With courses ranging from beginners, intermediate and advanced the first workshops covered the beginners level  in Cha-Cha-Cha, Jive and Waltz.

By undertaking training within the Essentially Dance workshop programmes the schools will improve young people’s confidence, social skills, self esteem, fitness and health – and hope to enhance community involvement and engagement within the Seacroft Manston areas.

Leeds Young People’s Film Festival are delighted to be working with Find Your Talent to give young people living in Seacroft Manston, Morley and Leeds Inner North West the opportunity to watch films that take a look at other cultures in a unique way. The films will be screened at Hyde Park Picture House on Monday 29th and Wednesday 31st March 2010.

The festival will be screening the stunning animation Persepolis (a coming of age drama about growing up during the Iranian revolution) and Whale Rider, where a young Maori girl fights to fulfil her destiny – which her grandfather refuses to recognise.

All young people attending the film will receive a fact sheet about the film and the festival is giving each FYT area 10 Golden Family Tickets which allows up to four people to see all the films in the festival for free. The screenings are also open for parents book into.

In addition to the screenings the festival is offering groups of young people from each FYT area the opportunity to become local ambassadors for their areas and act as a focus group for the festival. The ambassadors will be given access all areas passes to see any of the films and can experience any of the workshops or master classes to understand how a festival is programmed and organised.  

It is hoped that by encouraging young people to visit the screenings they will engage and explore the core themes of  cultural diversity and understanding other cultures through the young film festival workshops.

expologo

Find Your Talent have funded the youth strand of the EXPO festival which is taking place in Leeds this year.  EXPO is a national free festival of sound art and experimental music and runs from the 25th to the 29th September.

Young people from across the city have worked with sonic artists to create their own pieces of artwork.  These projects have given the young people the unique opportunity to exhibit their artwork alongside international artists.

Gifted and talented year 6 pupils from Morley primaries worked with Glenn Boulter, sonic artist and Sarah Shaw, Head of Music at Bruntcliffe High School to create an audio trail of the exhibits at Leeds City Museum.

morley expo workshop

Artist Mira Calix worked with young people from South Leeds High School to explore the visual and audio effects of sound by combining unlikely objects such as rice and marbles with bass speakers.

In Seacroft Manston young people from the David Young Community Academy worked with arts organisation Heads Together to create a ‘domestic symphony’ based around the back-to-back kitchen in Leeds City Museum.

Find Your Talent and ArtForms, Education Leeds are leading a two year project with Seacroft Manston schools, looking at what arts are on offer in the classroom and whether there is fair and equitable provision across the area.  Over the next two years, with schools driving the agenda, new arts activities for pupils and training for staff will be commissioned.  The ultimate aim is to create a model cultural offer: an ideal arts & cultural experience from the point of view of a child as they move through school life.

To celebrate the start of the project, each school has been able to buy in two days’ of an artist’s time to create a project for Shine week. The response is growing.  Schools are keen to broaden provision and to explore the idea of a creative curriculum. St Theresa’s Primary in Manston has just become a Change school with Creative Partnerships.  Their headteacher has a commitment to, and clear vision of, the role arts and creativity can play in raising aspirations and standards. 

On June 5th the whole staff enjoyed an intensive creative day at Temple Newsam (pictured).  Artforms arranged for visual artist, Lou Sumray, radio practitioner, Adrian Sinclair from East Leeds FM, and Theatre Company Blah Blah Blah to lead sessions with teachers.  East Leeds FM broadcast from their caravan, parked outside the magnificent Temple Newsam House.  The whole experience was a huge success, and given even more impact thanks to the fantastic surroundings.

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The first exciting project off the starting block for Seacroft Manston is the creation of East Leeds Youth Theatre, sister to those established in the South and North West. Development worker, Sara Allkins is already touring school assemblies and drama groups, ready to launch junior and senior theatres later in the summer.  They will run from Parklands Primary on Thursday evenings.

For more information about this opportunity contact Sara at youththeatresleeds@yahoo.co.uk

What was FYT?

Find Your Talent was a national programme to explore new ways of opening up cultural and creative opportunities to young people. Leeds was one of the ten FYT Pathfinders in England.

The programme was led by Leeds City Council and Education Leeds, working closely together and with the city's cultural and community sectors to find ways for more young people to participate in the cultural life of the city.

FYT was funded to operate between 2008-2011 but its legacy in Leeds continues through activities under the Breeze banner, as well as other initiatives.