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Page 3 Profile: Darcey Bussell, dancer

Care to dance?

Sorry, I’ve got two left feet, but former ballerina Darcey Bussell has been calling on the Government to introduce compulsory dance lessons at schools for some time and it seems the authorities are beginning to dance to her tune.

Aren’t there more pressing educational concerns?

Not as far as Bussell’s concerned. Earlier this year, the one-time Principal Ballerina for the Royal Ballet said: “Dance has always been part of after-school projects, but it should be part of the curriculum.”

So children can learn the origins of the word arabesque and how to survive on a diet of tissues soaked in orange juice?

Well, hopefully not the latter. Bussell, 44, has warned that overuse of computers and social media has meant children are forgetting how to communicate with their bodies and express themselves. She advocates dance as a way of helping them show their feelings.

How does she hope to achieve such a transformation?

“From my own experience, I think any sort of dance creates an awareness of your own space,” she said. “ We wouldn’t have this body otherwise – we’d just be a blob on a chair.” Let’s just hope the result of her endeavours is more Ballet Shoes than Black Swan.

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