A bit about me

I started ballet when I was 15. My single mum simply hadn’t been able to afford expensive things like ballet and music lessons until then.

The magic of ballet grabbed me within minutes in my first class and has never let go. So here I am, still taking classes and now also teaching it!

Those first few lessons, I felt like a fish out of water! I was in a class with kids 6 or 7 yrs younger than me, and my adolescent self felt like a huge whale in amongst those trim pre-adolescent girls. Happily, within weeks the younger girls had accepted me, I’d gotten (sort of) used to the look of my body in my swimsuit (couldn’t afford a proper leotard!) and my wonderful teacher was never ever offputting about my age or my size.

Since my first ballet class, I’ve danced many styles, including bellydancing as a performer and junior teacher, tango, salsa and Irish dancing. I’ve also studied music, art and design, and been a professional writer and editor. I’ve learnt archery, and taught it to others. I tutored at Uni for a few years. Oh, and I  love to sew. I also do pilates for chronic hip issues.

As for the ballet teaching, I started out doing private classes, then had so many students I could run some classes, and in the last year, due to a chronic illness, I couldn’t keep up, so found some wonderful, talented teachers to fill the demand for more classes and more options.
I really enjoy seeing Offbeat Ballet students gain new levels of achievement and become better able to express themselves through ballet. I also enjoy the added confidence and strength ballet brings to people with mobility challenges.

(And a huge thankyou to Brynda Wackett for the use of her gorgeous photograph for my blog header 🙂

2 thoughts on “A bit about me

  1. Hello there
    Interested in joining for Thursday classes.
    When I was younger I did a bit of ballet.
    Are your classes learning grades and specific exercises? Or do you ask your dancers to freestyle and make dances up themselves?


    1. Hi Jane, I’d love to have you in my classes!

      We’re learning Cecchetti grades, but fairly loosely as I’m not a Cecchetti qualified teacher (I’m working on that!) and my students wanted to go through the grades. My classes are very standard ballet classes starting at the barre with a plie exercise then tendu exercise etc. When we’ve done half an hr of barre, we move into the centre and do centre-work, which is when we do stuff that people would recognise as ‘ballet’.
      Most of my students are around grade 3/4, and I simplify the exercises for new people and make them harder for more advanced dancers.
      My students haven’t made up dances yet. No one seems interested in that so far. But that may change. I check in with my students to make sure they’re getting what they want from the classes.
      Often a pilates exercise or a specific strengthening exercise can creep in, when it will help my students learn, but the focus is always on the ballet.

      Regards, Imogheena


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