About the Burberry Inspire programme
As part of the Burberry Inspire programme, Northern Ballet works with each participating school to develop a tailored experience that meets the school’s curriculum, careers and wellbeing aims for both students and teachers.
Every Key Stage 3 student is given the opportunity to watch a Northern Ballet performance. This usually involves around 1000 students visiting Leeds Grand Theatre for a special matinee performance.
‘The performance was a fantastic opportunity for the pupils, particularly those who speak English as a second language because they were able to follow the story just as well as those who are native English speakers. It meant the performance was completely inclusive for our students.’
Workshops & After School Clubs
Our Dance Education Officers work with the schools to understand where creativity could be injected into the curriculum, using creative dance in lessons such as PE, English and History to explore key learning aims. We aim to showcase all aspects of working at a ballet company, looking at set design in art classes and costume in textiles classes.
Our sessions range from one-off introductory sessions to in-depth project work with a class, for example creating a whole set for a performance.
‘Students really enjoyed the workshop and it was definitely beneficial for them in terms of exploring the text more and looking at it from a performance perspective. Students expressed how much they enjoyed the workshop afterwards and were heard talking about it to other students in the year group.’Ruth Gorse, English Teacher
‘I enjoyed the activities because it increased my confidence. It showed me how to work in a group.'Student
Dance Film Project
We aim to work with a class of students for the whole year to create their own dance film. This deep engagement allows them to develop their movement vocabulary and choreographic skills before working with a choreographer and film maker to create their own narrative dance work.
In year two of the project, we were stopped in our tracks by COVID-19. As our work in school came to a swift end, we worked with the schools to develop creative activities for the students while at home. From this, we were delighted to work with Northern Ballet and American Ballet Theatre company dancers to create four short dance films based on students’ choreographic ideas.
We were also able to create a lockdown inspired dance film with some students from Airedale Academy.
We introduce students to the range of careers available at a ballet company in assemblies and lessons throughout the year, but also invite a smaller cohort of students to visit Northern Ballet HQ. During this Residency day, students tour the building and take part in a range of workshops delivered by Northern Ballet staff and associates.
‘There are a number of students here today who have only ever experienced dance at Castleford Academy. Today has given them a real taste of the pathways that they could follow in the arts and allowed them to experience what it would feel like to work within the industry’Teacher, Castleford Academy
At the end of each year all the Burberry Inspire partners and schools come together for a huge celebration. Students share their work and get to enjoy and appreciate the work of others.