Dance Westminster project aims to help disabled people be active: dancing for all abilities

Nominations are open for Dance Westminster, a project which aims to help disabled people be active.

The project is being run by Westminster city council, with dance company Step Change Studios, and Everyone Active.

It is open to people with disabilities aged 11 and over who live, study or work in the borough.

Dance Westminster will give people the opportunity to attend one of three free workshops where they can experience an dance class and learn a dance routine.

Participants will then take part in an audition where they can perform the routine.

Ten finalists will be selected to take part in a final on January 23 in the ballroom at Bayswater’s Porchester Hall, where they will compete with a professional dance partner for the first ever Dance Westminster title.

From ballroom to Bollywood dance, Dance Westminster is for all abilities and no dance experience is required.

Carers are welcome to participate with people they support, and a team of dance staff and volunteers will support everyone to take part.

Councillor Iain Bott, Westminster city council’s cabinet member for sports, culture and community, said: “This is Westminster’s first inclusive dance competition and we hope to see as many people as possible take part. We want to make Westminster an active city for all.

“The competition will enable people to dance, but we will also be providing opportunities to find out more about the different inclusive activities, and we hope that dance will encourage people to try other sports.”

Rashmi Becker, founder of Step Change Studios, said: “I live, work and play in Westminster. I love being part of this community which has so much to offer.

“I set up Step Change Studios to address the lack of opportunities for disabled people to participate in dance.

“As guardian to my disabled brother I know first-hand the positive impact that physical activity has on quality of life.

“Dance is a fantastic way to connect, to be creative and improve well-being.

“We are looking forward to getting the community dancing through our workshops and I am sure we will discover lots of talent.

“We are delighted to be supporting the council in this initiative.”

Registration for Dance Westminster is now open and anyone wanting to participate can sign up for one of the following workshops:

December 3 (11am to 3pm) at Moberly Sports Centre, 25 Chamberlayne Road, Kensal Green; December 7 (11am-3pm) at The Tresham Centre, 27 Tresham Crescent, Lisson Grove; December 11 (9.30am-2.30pn) at City of Westminster College, 25 Paddington Green.

For further details, and to register, go to www.westminster.gov.uk/dance-westminster


Main Pic: Rashmi Becker performing with a professional wheelchair dancer

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