CDC Street Dance: Back In Class and Loving Every Minute!

Many local businesses have had to change and adapt during the Covid-19 pandemic and dance schools are no exception.

For 18 weeks CDC Street Dance, an Ipswich based dance school which runs classes and after school clubs for children and young people aged two to 18 years, was forced to cancel in person classes. However, Sophie Dilworth, dance teacher and principal at CDC, quickly adapted to provide online classes, which proved to be extremely popular with existing students while also attaching several newcomers.

“It was a shock at first, but we worked out how to use Skype, Zoom and WhatsApp and soon had online classes up and running, not realising it would have to be for so long. It was hard but we got through it and I know the classes provided a really important focus for our students when so much of their regular routines were disrupted.”

Despite the success of the online classes, Sophie was overjoyed to be able to reopen the school doors and invite students in once again.

“Being able to work in the same space with our wonderful students and to see them in person is such a pleasure. Obviously, we must adhere to the government rules and regulations, but our students are accustomed to the rules in school and elsewhere, so it has been a smooth transition. Most of my regular students are now back in class, with more returning every week.”

Sophie discovered her own passion for dance when she was only eight years old and went on to become a qualified and registered UDO Street Dance teacher. Now 25, she and her mother work together to create a healthy and fun environment for her students.

“I work by myself, but my mum helps with the registers and assists in some classes if students have additional needs. We want as many young people as possible to discover the joy of dance so we do everything we can to make our classes accessible to everyone.”

CDC Street Dance has achieved many prestigious awards, such as 101 Events UK Finals winning 2018 and UDO East Anglia winner 2018 and ‘19.

CDC offers a wide range of options for students:

  • Holiday fun days
  • Fair displays
  • Professional and famous dancer workshops
  • Birthday parties
  • Annual inhouse competitions
  • Global, regional and local competition experience

While Sophie knows it is the convenience and reliability of her classes, and the fact that they are value for money (with no fee increase this year) which account in large part for her success, it’s the impact on her students which she is most proud of.

“It’s wonderful to see their confidence grow and to see them take advantage of the opportunities which come their way, such as taking part in displays and competitions. I get quite emotional talking about it because dance is my life and I’ve seen first-hand the impact it can have, both physically and mentally. It’s wonderful to be able to share what I love with so many young people and to see them thrive as a result.”

The fact that so many of Sophie’s students come from recommendations and word of mouth, must surely be the best testament to her successful approach.

“I’m always delighted to meet new students who tell me they’ve heard good things about CDC. In my experience, children and young people of any and every age enjoy spending time with people who love what they do and are excited to meet new challenges, and have fun doing it. That’s how it is at CDC Dance and I would never want it any other way.”

Visit the website www.cdcstreetdance.co.uk to view the current timetable and to read about the full range of opportunities on offer. You can also follow CDC on social media and sign up to receive a regular newsletter.

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