The aim of the Dance Department is to offer high quality Dance provision
throughout the school curriculum and extra curricular programme.
The delivery of all sessions has a practical focus to ensure students
are engaged at a level most suitable for their bodies at that time.
We believe and are proud that we impact upon the dance education
of every individual and equip dancers with the tools to become better
dance technicians in the future.
We also focus on raising
the profile and awareness of Dance as an academic subject,
therefore we train thinking dancers. We encourage mind, body
connectivity to enable students to perform, debate, analyse
and write about Dance.
Our ultimate aim is to train
artists to realise their creativity and encourage them to embark
upon the right pathway for them. The ethos of the dance department
is to inspire young people to become passionate about dance.
Due to the increasing
awareness of Dance within Barking Abbey School we have two
specialist dance teachers which ensures Dance is taught in
its broadest content.
Our main focus is on Contemporary
techniques such as Cunningham, Release Based and Limon. Supplementing
these techniques we draw upon elements of Ballet, African, South
Asian, Capoeira and Urban genres.
technique sessions, students are expected to create both solo and
group choreographies working from various stimuli. Students are
guided through this process by participating in choreographic workshops
delivered by dance department staff and visiting professional dance
artists. This process is also enhanced by studying professional
dance works throughout several decades and debates are encouraged
to analyse the various dance ideas.
The Dance department currently
offers many qualifications that are both academic and vocational:
Key Stage 3
Dance is currently taught in PE in eight week blocks.
Key Stage 4
BTEC Performing Arts Dance
Key Stage 5
AS Level Dance and A2 Level Dance
Extra Curricular Activities
Dance Leaders Award
Youth Dance Groups
Alongside all of the extra curricular
activities mentioned above the Dance Department offers Theory Revision
classes for GCSE Dance students and a range of dance techniques
for all ages.
Dance Department Projects The Dance Department at Barking
Abbey School is recognised nationally and has been involved in high
profile projects such as The Royal Ballet School project with Dagenham
Park School last year.
In June 2004, School Standards
Minister, David Miliband asked The Royal Ballet School to engage
in a new Dance Partnership and Access programme. Following a rigorous
national selection process Barking Abbey Specialist Sports College
and Dagenham Park Specialist Performing Arts College were chosen
to engage in an in-depth partnership project with The Royal Ballet
Upper School during the academic year 2005/6.
This involved sixth form students
who were studying the highly regarded BTEC National Performing Arts:
Dance and A-Level Dance courses currently taught at Barking Abbey
and Dagenham Park. Through the project our sixth form students from
the borough accessed the excellent, first class teaching, training
and facilities of this national vocational ballet school and worked
alongside The Royal Ballet School students. The partnership took
the form of a choreographic project over two terms with the internationally
renowned choreographer / dancer Kenneth Tharp OBE. The finished
choreographic work was be performed at The Royal Ballet School in
Covent Garden, The Barbican Theatre and new local venue, the Broadway
Theatre in February 2006.
Working in a partnership scheme
such as this with The Royal Ballet raised our students’ aspirations,
standard of dance and provided our students with an insight into
the level of professionalism required by the Performing Arts industry.
Obviously both schools are very proud to have been chosen for such
an exciting and auspicious project. It is another clear indicator
of the quality of Performing Arts teaching in the London Borough
of Barking and Dagenham.