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English National Ballet

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Autumn 2023 marks the beginning of an exciting new partnership between English National Ballet and Liverpool Hope University to deliver English National Ballet’s much-loved community engagement programme in Liverpool.

English National Ballet’s Dance for Parkinson’s offers people living with Parkinson’s the benefits of a recognised and evidence-based dance programme with live music and wider cultural engagement opportunities for better health and well-being.

English National Ballet partnered with Merseyside Dance Initiative from January 2014 until its recent closure to deliver Dance for Parkinson’s in Liverpool. The partnership between Liverpool Hope University and English National Ballet is an exciting opportunity to grow and develop the programme further. 

What is Dance for Parkinson’s?

Established in 2010, English National Ballet was the first UK dance company to develop a dance and cultural programme specifically for people living with Parkinson’s underpinned by research from University of Roehampton. Dance for Parkinson’s (DfP) programme supports people living with Parkinson’s through the joy of dance, music, and social connection.

These joyful and creative classes are inspired by English National Ballet’s classical and contemporary performance repertoire, are always accompanied by music played live, and are led by highly experienced dance artists and musicians. The programme also offers unique opportunities to attend performances, meet creatives, and gain behind-the-scenes insight into English National Ballet’s productions.

The components of the dance class, the creative freedom, and the social aspect of the programme can help with managing daily living with Parkinson’s. Dancing can enhance fluidity of movement, develop postural stability, increase flexibility of the spine, and improve balance. The use of rhythm and voice can help with cueing movement and expression.

A new partnership and creative hub

Dance for Parkinson’s classes will now be hosted in the inspiring surroundings of the Great Hall at our Creative Campus. Furthermore, students from the University’s Dance programme will have the opportunity to extend their learning by contributing to the programme as DfP volunteers, supporting participation and working under the guidance of English National Ballet’s specialist Associate Artists, learning about the many career pathways that dance has to offer. English National Ballet’s links with ATG Liverpool Empire and other venues in the north-west offers the programme’s students and staff the chance to experience the Company’s mainstage productions and to participate in ongoing training and professional development.