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09 Jan 2017


DanceEast Centre for Advanced Training (CAT) is looking for children and young people aged 10 – 18 years who have what it takes to become a world-class dancer. DanceEast CAT is looking for individuals who aspire to have a career in dance, who stand out, show drive and determination, are hard-working and creative, and above all are committed and passionate.

Talented youngsters from across the east of England are being invited to apply for September 2017 entry, and demonstrate their dance talent and potential at auditions at the Jerwood DanceHouse in Ipswich, from Saturday 20 May – Friday 17 June, to earn a place on the DanceEast CAT.

The DanceEast CAT has a 100% success rate of graduates continuing to full-time training at conservatoire or university level to study for degrees, diplomas and professional qualifications in dance and performing arts. Past students have gone on to study dance at Arts Educational School, Bird College, Central School of Ballet, London Contemporary Dance School, London Studio Centre, Mountview Academy of Theatre Arts, Northern Contemporary Dance School, Rambert School of Ballet, Royal Ballet School and Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance, to name just a few.

The National CAT scheme was set up as an alternative to residential dance schools, like the Royal Ballet School, to offer children and young people, regardless of their personal circumstances, pre-professional specialist dance training whilst living at home and staying in school. The DanceEast CAT is one of ten national centres that offers this type of training across the UK.

The DfE Music and Dance Scheme says: “The aim of the scheme is to help identify and assist children with exceptional potential, regardless of their personal circumstances, to benefit from world class specialist training as part of a broad and balanced education.”

Supported by the Department for Education Music & Dance Scheme, means-tested grants are available and can cover up to 100% of training costs, dancewear and travel. The scheme currently enables around 2,000 exceptionally talented children across the UK to have access to the best specialist music and dance training available alongside a good academic education.

To apply for an audition, you must fill in an application form online or fill out a paper form which can be found at the back of a CAT prospectus (pick up at the Jerwood DanceHouse on Ipswich Waterfront), application deadline is Friday 5 May 2017. Everyone who applies will be invited to a Stage 1 Audition which involves fun, creative, contemporary and ballet workshops. If you are successful at Stage 1 you will be invited to a Stage 2 audition and interview.

Free Taster Workshops are available in Ipswich, Colchester, Cambridge and Norwich throughout February and March. It is recommended that all applicants attend as parents and guardians will have the opportunity to learn more about the CAT whilst children and young people will take part in a contemporary and creative dance workshop to get a feel for the scheme. Book your place online or call 01473 295230.

Elsa Urmston, DanceEast CAT Manager says: “The key thing to the CAT auditions at DanceEast, compared to TV talent shows for example, is that we don’t set out to judge young people who apply. We provide a friendly environment and we seek to get as many people involved as possible at whatever level. We are not necessarily looking for a perfect, ready-made dancer, but instead someone who has the passion and potential to excel and succeed.”