Take Art, Take Pride

March – June, 2010

Developed as a follow-on from Love: Hate: Hope: Ramsgate, this was a series of three ‘flash dance’ events in Ramsgate town centre. The idea was to highlight the biggest Hate discovered, of the dirtiness of the town.

Choreographer Stephanie Clarke was asked to create three dances in three styles: street dance, jive and ballroom. On chosen Saturday mornings, up to 100 people were asked to arrive at the Kings Church Hall at 9.30am and spend an hour learning that week’s dance routine. Then at 11.00am, everyone dressed up as cleaners and paraded onto the street at the central crossroads where the market was in process and did the dance routine to music broadcast from speakers. The theme was emphasised by four wheelie bins customised by artist Emily Tull, each with a different decoration created with recycled objects, including a garden and a sandcastle and pushed by ‘street cleaners’.

All ages took part and the events created a huge sense of camaraderie as well as of achievement. Dancers ranged from 8 years old to over 70 and everyone was very nervous before going out on to the street; no-one knew how the public would react. Over 200 people watched each event and lots took film and photos. The Mayor of Ramsgate joined the first event and Cllr Brenda Rogers came along to the second.

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