Part 2 of our interview with Swiss and World Tap Dance champions Olivia and Rebecca Grobety, who join the Simply Theatre team in September
What classes will you be teaching at Simply Theatre?
We’ll mostly be teaching dance for the Performing Arts courses. We’re really looking forward to this, as we’ve choreographed quite a few musical theatre numbers in the past and that it’s a dance style which we really enjoy teaching.
We’re looking forward to working with a group of youngsters who have the same passion for the performing arts as we do. We love the fact that students in this school often not only dance but also sing and act, and we’d like to try and motivate pupils to really enjoy the dance part of the courses too.
What would you say to anyone wanting to take up dance who hasn’t quite found the drive to go for it yet?
Give it a go! You might be surprised at how much you enjoy it. It’s not always easy to take up dance, as there are a lot of fundamentals you need to learn in the beginning. It might help to start with a dance style which really motivates you, and maybe from there on you can try and expand to other styles. That’s what happened to us! When we were younger we absolutely loved tap, but we refused to try ballet because we didn’t think of it as being fun. The director at our dance school finally managed to talk us into trying one ballet class, and now we couldn’t imagine our life without ballet! Sometimes you need to give it a try, you never know what might come out of it.
And what would you say to people who are wanting to take their dance to the next level? What top tips do you have for them?
If you want to be a good dancer, you have to work for it. You have to remember that even though dancing is a lot of fun, it’s also very difficult and physically demanding. You can’t be a good dancer if you don’t practice, and that doesn’t mean only in the studio! We can remember spending hours when we were smaller practicing our steps in front of the mirror, or going over and over a difficult tap sequence which we couldn’t quite get until it was perfect. Sometimes, when people see dancers perform, they only see the finished product, and they don’t realize the hours of rehearsals that go into even a single performance. As a dance student there are always things you can improve on: learning new technique, improving your facial expressions, building your strength and stamina, working on your flexibility, etc. Just remember: ‘Hard work beats talent when talent doesn’t work hard’!
What would you be doing if you weren’t dancing or teaching dance?
We’re actually both qualified secondary school teachers in the Swiss school system. So if we weren’t doing anything dance-related (which we can’t imagine), we’d both still be teaching!
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