Ballet pro Daniel steps up to share his expertise at Tring class

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A former National Ballet dancer paid a visit to Tring for a joint dance workshop.

Daniel Jones - who retired from the English National Ballet in January after two decades - joined forces with dance teacher and former professional Jo de Souza to teach dance-lovers aged eight and up at an exclusive workshop.

Daniel and Jo worked together at the English National Ballet and the last time they were in the studio was when they were both performing in Wayne Sleep’s Dash at the London Coliseum.

The former professionals invited dance-lovers to an interactive workshop at Tring Park School - where Jo was a former student - and got the students listening to several pieces of music, asking them to choose their favourite.

Depending on their choice, they were sorted into three different groups and asked to choreograph their own performance to their chosen piece.

Jo, who lives in Tring and is a former Tring Park student, said: “In every ballet, there’s a goodie and a baddie, so they had to decide among themselves who would play each part.

“In a ballet company, you don’t just get told what to do - you have to be imaginative and creative and present your own ideas. That’s what we were teaching them.”

“Everyone who came just loved dancing, and it was a very special class to me because some of my ex-students returned and they got the chance to meet Daniel. It was a real eye-opener and a great opportunity for them.

The pair offered a Q&A session at the end of the class, meaning parents could ask them the best way to further their children’s dance careers and get them into vocational schools.

Jo - whose daughter Jessie now attends Tring Park on a full scholarship - plans to hold similar classes in the future off the back of the first session’s success.

The mum-of-one said: “It went really well and we’ve had fabulous feedback. I do classes like this quite often at the Royal Academy of Dance in London, but this is the first time I’ve done it locally.

For more about Jo and her dance centre, click here to visit the website