Unlocking the Power of Dance: Boosting Mental and Physical Wellness through Movement

Friday 28th April 2023

As parents of children and teenagers, you want to ensure that your children lead healthy and happy lives. Encouraging them to dance can be a great way to help them achieve both. Dance is an art form that not only entertains but also strengthens your body and improves your mood. Research has shown that dance can be an effective form of therapy for mental health conditions such as anxiety and depression. When you dance, your body releases endorphins, which are hormones that reduce stress and promote feelings of happiness. In addition, dance can help you express emotions that you might not be able to put into words. It allows you to connect with your body, release tension, and feel more relaxed. Dance…

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Chislehurst dancers performed LIVE at Disney Land Paris this summer!

Monday 5th September 2022

The wonderful dancers of Michelle Sidwell Academy of Dance were absolutely thrilled to represent their dance school, and Chislehurst, by performing live at Disney Land Paris this summer. This amazing opportunity was a once in a lifetime trip for many of the dancers, who were just delighted to show off their polished routine after months and months of practice. The children absolutely loved the whole experience, from hair and make up, dancing, Disney magic and so much more! The team spent 4 days in Paris, and here you can see their very busy schedule! FRIDAY 5TH AUGUST - ARRIVAL Arrive at Hotel Cheyenne and greeted by Perform In The Magic team. Had a group meeting and then had some photos taken in our troupe…

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The journey of MSAOD Principal, Michelle Sidwell, from dance student to successful Academy owner.

Tuesday 19th July 2022

MSAOD Principal, Michelle Sidwell, started dancing at age 4, at The Campbell School of Dancing in Dulwich. After falling in love with dance and realising she was actually pretty talented, she auditioned for Urdang Academy Lower School and Arts Educational Lower School. She got into both, but chose the iconic, Urdang Academy, who even offered her a scholarship at the tender age of 10! During her time there, she danced in pantomimes, and went on to audition (successfully) with The Bolshoi Ballet & The Kirov Ballet in Sleeping Beauty at The London Colliseum. She was only one of 4 children who danced with both Russian companies when they visited the UK which was entered into the record books! Amazing! She also danced…

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What happens in a Dance exam? A guide for students and parents

Wednesday 20th April 2022

Dance exams do not need to be a stressful time. They are part of the journey of becoming a professional dancer and realising your dreams. Exams are optional but highly recommended, so we have the perfect guide on how to get through them right here! How to prep for your exam Its all about the preparation!! You can never be too prepared for your exams. Whatever you don't think you need, take it with you! You will need to make sure you have all uniform ready, clean and spotless! Have extra tights with you just in case (ladders last problem!) Make sure you have all dance shoes with you. Your shoes need to be clean and comfortable. (Wear them in, don't…

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Dancing your way through your GCSE's and A Levels

Friday 18th March 2022

Exams are tough. It takes hard work and dedication to get through your school exams. Just like it takes hard work and dedication to be a dancer. Dancing can be one of the best activities to do during a potentially stressful time; it can actually benefit you! Keep reading to find out how! Exercise is known for being one of the best ways to de-stress and is the most underused activity for stress relief. As you already love dance, take advantage and use it for relief from exam stress. All the long hours of revision and course work can take its toll on anyone, no matter what your age. The time you set aside for rest, recuperation, fun and exercise is just as…

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Why take dance exams?

Tuesday 8th March 2022

Once students have learnt the set exercises as well as all the dance vocabulary required for the exam, they will be invited by Miss Michelle to take their exam! Students who start dancing from young will be entered at Primary level, followed by Grade's 1 - 6 and then progressing to pre-professional levels. Taking dance exams is highly recommended, as not only is it a great achievement, but it also teaches great discipline and etiquette which can be beneficial in all aspects of life. Once students reach Grade 6, you can gain UCAS points. UCAS tariff points translate your qualifications and grades into a numerical value, which some universities, colleges, and conservatoires may refer to in their course entry requirements. How to prepare…

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What do you want to be when you grow up?? A guide for the budding professional dancer.

Tuesday 18th January 2022

If dancing has become more than a hobby or a passion for you and you are thinking about carrying on professionally then read on! Becoming a professional dancer takes dedication and hard work. It won't always be easy, but the journey will be exciting, fulfilling and worthwhile. There are so many avenues you can go down. The variety of vocational colleges and courses has increased incredibly over the years and all the information out there can become overwhelming. So, we have a few pointers for you right here to get you started! Vocational dance colleges take pupils from the age of 16 years old, though we do advise you to stay at school and get your A-Levels so you have more education behind you,…

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How to keep yourself in a dance mindset over Christmas and New Year

Monday 20th December 2021

Christmas is of course about spending time with loved ones and getting in the festive spirit, but as dancers we also need to make sure we are keeping our dance mindset. It is important to keep yourself flexible and strong. This is what the pro dancers do and the habit you should be getting into. Unfortunately you can quickly lose what you have worked so hard to gain, and you have worked SO hard, it would be a shame to take a step back. Some basic stretches and exercises (examples of which are below) is all you need to do in between term times. Rest is also important for the body. Allowing yourself time to recuperate is just as important as keeping…

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Why do we wear uniforms for dance?

Wednesday 17th November 2021

"I think it's a beautiful thing when you wear a uniform or a garb which represents a group of people, because what it immediately symbolizes is oneness, togetherness" - Nia Long (actress) Dancers have worn their "uniforms" to perform for centuries. It is strange to call them uniforms as you never like to think that you are wearing this "uniform" to carry out a job. You are doing what you love to do. When we dance, we are creating art. Our art form needs to be respected and shown the grace and glamour it deserves. Traditionally all ballet dancers wear their leotards and tutus to show respect to their art form and all the ballet dancers which came before them. Most professions wear…

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Saturday 6th November 2021
Michelle Sidwell

Summer at MSAOD has been full of exciting things for our students. We have some exceptional dancers here and felt that we needed to let you know how proud we are of you all!! So we have dedicated the November Blog to you! Firstly, we want to say a huge congratulations to all students who took their exams back in June this year. They had been delayed 3 times due to Covid, but we have seen a 100% pass rate this year which is absolutely incredible! We are so proud of you all! The next congratulations must go to our girls Polly and Amber, who appeared in a production of Annie at The Brook Theatre in Chatham from 29th-31st October. We are…

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