Dance students at De Montfort University Leicester (DMU) will soon get the chance to show their creative prowess at the upcoming 2023 festival.
DMU students in rehearsal for the University Dance Festival
Final-year students will showcase the skills and creativity they have developed throughout their course in a series of performances.
Having worked with professional choreographers and university tutors for weeks, the students’ hard work will pay off during the annual showcase, taking place this year from 2-3 June at The Venue@DMU.
Student Scarlett Gaishauser is taking part in the festival and has reflected on the highs and lows of the build up to the performances.
“Everyone has worked really hard in rehearsals and it’s been such an incredible experience,” said the 21-year-old from Bedfordshire.
“The biggest challenge has been working so intensely with the same group of people. Dance can be very challenging, especially when everyone is under pressure to do their best but we’re like one big family so we always help and support each other.”
Scarlett Gaishauser- photo by Harry Booker Photography, @hbookerphotos
The students have collaborated with an external choreographer, as well as their tutors in preparation for the event, giving them real-life experience of working with professionals from the dance world.
“Working with an external choreographer showed me the different ways that professionals operate. It was really eye-opening to experience a whole new way of working and it’s been great to have that experience before graduation,” said Scarlett.
“The work with the external choreographers in the performance is also combined with our own choreography, made in our modules over our third year. It’s a really varied celebration of everyone in all their styles of dance.”
For Scarlett, the festival has allowed her to reflect on how far she’s come on her own personal journey during her studies.
“I remember going to see my friend in the University Dance Festival before I started at DMU- I was so amazed and it made me really excited to be part of it,” she said.
“When I was looking at universities, the modules offered at DMU were really diverse and I knew they would challenge me to use my skills and develop new ones. All the technique classes have been so helpful and have opened my eyes to what I can do.
“I was adamant when I started the course that I couldn’t do certain styles, but the last three years have shown me what I can achieve when I put my mind to it and push past that barrier in my head.”
Rehearsals for the festival underway
Scarlett credits her tutors with allowing her to develop her dance ability and confidence.
“Our teachers are absolutely amazing. They’re so supportive and are always there when we need them. They really know each of us as individuals and they’ve been a huge part of improving my confidence,” she said.
Scarlett’s mixed feelings about the arrival of the festival are testament to her experience during her studies.
“The festival is a lovely way to celebrate with the people you’ve spent every day with for the past three years but it’s definitely bittersweet knowing this is the final send off,” she said.
“The whole experience has been incredible though. It’s a great way to end three amazing years.”
Posted on Friday 26th May 2023