Dear dancers and dance lovers,
I hope you are well in these strange times!
First, let me say that I have been thoroughly amazed by all the dance classes and activities that have appeared online lately. This has proven to the world two things that I have always known to be true: One, that dancers are resilient and will find a way to keep moving 💃 no matter what life throws at them. Two, that our community has so much heart ❤️. My own heart has overflowed seeing the generosity of dancers – and other artists – who are sharing their talents and passion with not only their students, but the entire world. (Seriously, I am getting teary just writing about it! 😭) LDF has been sharing as many of these initiatives as we can on our Facebook page, please feel free to post your offerings on any of our social media channels.
I want to assure you that the CMA and LDF will continue to present dance performances and workshops for London to enjoy, one way or another. I am hopeful that the summer festival will happen June 26-28 as planned, but in all honesty we don’t know how this situation will unfold. We may need to adapt but we promise the show will go on, perhaps with different dates, sizes and shapes of events this year.
This is a stressful time for everyone, and I encourage you to reach out for help when you need it. The CBC has compiled a great list of resources for artists including financial assistance, advocacy, and mental health services that are available for those in need.
This is normally a time of celebration in the dance community, with recitals, competitions, exams and performances, but so many of these events have had to be cancelled or postponed. I know how hard this is, and I applaud you all for doing your part to stay home and keep our country’s most vulnerable populations safe. And to our essential workers who are braving the outside world: thank you for all you do! 👏
While I know you will keep working your bodies, I encourage you to also take time to care for your mental health. It is absolutely reasonable to be grieving the loss of all the normal dance things – and regular life things – that you are missing right now. Stay connected to your dance family through technology, and also take some time to just breathe and process how you are feeling. We will get through this, and on the other side we will have some incredible new stories to tell through dance.
How can we help? I would love to know how our organization can support London’s dance community over the coming weeks and months. I will be scheduling an online meeting in April to chat with stakeholders and find out what you need, so please email to let us know if you would like to join in.
Wishing you good health and sending all my love ♥️
Elizabeth “Bizz” Varty
Centre of Movement Arts & London Dance Festival