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S.F- "My first year with Thrive"

Updated: May 20, 2022

Ladies and gents and people of all ages, this is my personal blog about the amazing thrive youth dance company. I have so far been with thrive for a year and it has been amazing! So, I am going to start with how I joined the company.

I joined thrive last year around Christmas time because I have a huge passion for dance, because I used to dance with my mum. When she was my age, she was dancing with so much passion and elegance not to mention the fact that she loved every second of it. I first became interested in dance when I was young, I was 4 or 5 when I started watching strictly come dancing.

My mum and I would watch the Michael Flatley films such as the lord of dance, and my mum saw and felt the energy I got from them and how much admiration I had for the dancers. I said to her mum I want to do that it looks like so much fun, I was 10 I think.

I then started watching dirty dancing with my mum and I was still saying too her I want to be a dancer, the elegance the passion, the drama behind it all was such an amazing thing to me and I wanted to be that person.

When I got to secondary school my mum and I started doing country line dancing together and I loved it, she taught me how to count the beats in the music, she taught me how to do the grape vine and all sorts, my most favourite dance we did was probably slapping leather which we did to Footloose as well as the witch doctor.

When I got to college, I lost my passion for dance because I didn’t have the time to do any dancing, so I lost my buzz from it I didn’t realise how much I loved it until I wasn’t able to do it anymore. I lost a huge part of myself. But then my cousin introduced me to Thrive as she was already part of the company after I left college. She said to me Sam come and join me because I was telling her about how much I missed dancing, and I am so thankful because dance has given me my life back, my energy is back, and it is what I most look forward to during the week. So that my lovelies is how I came to thrive.

When I first came to thrive, I was so nervous, but I was also excited. I felt like I was missing a huge part of myself, and I was. Until I joined thrive! There have been challenges such as covid, but we made it through and it made me so strong, I missed working in the studio so much and it felt wrong not dancing in the studio. I have had so many positive experiences whilst being a part of thrive, I went on an intensive course over easter in which we started to create our film called “lost through lockdown” the film was about all the emotions and feelings throughout lockdown, how it was almost like Groundhog Day, everything was repeating itself, same routine etc. The first time we were in the studio after lockdown was magical and so positive, we were talking about how difficult it was and we spoke about the easter intensive, and it was amazing! During the intensive we were working on our fitness levels, flexibility, we were also calculating our heart rate before and after exercise. We did some travelling, swing exercises and we worked on our summer film.

After all of this we are now working on the winter platform, this year is the very first year that thrive has been involved so it is such an honour to be working towards something so amazing! We will be performing on the 7th of December. I am so excited! I have been wanting to perform on stage with thrive for so long and now I have the opportunity to do so, it makes me so proud.

I look back on my progress every month and to see the amount of change and confidence I have is such a big thing for me, from being a little girl I have loved dance yes, but I have never had as much confidence as I do now. I am picking the dance routine up so quickly and I am working very hard on all of the changes and all of the little, tiny but effective details, the body rolls, the flexing of the fingers all that jazz. The elegance and power of the piece is like something out of a film. Its all about the power and unity of women, the strength to face discrimination every day and keep our heads up high and strut our stuff. It’s all inspired of the Egyptian goddess Sekhmet. The name Sekhmet translates to “the one who is powerful” she is also the goddess of healing. She is the daughter of the Egyptian god Ra. The power and unity and elegance of our piece. The different textures of our piece show the gentleness of being the healer but the strength and power also.

Thrive has also just released a program about life once you hit adulthood, talking about CV’S, interviews, it gives you an amazing opportunity to go out into the real world and have a paid internship that you can put onto your cv. This program; Thriving Forwards: New Directions is an amazing opportunity to give you advice that you may not be receiving at school or even as an adult still struggle with. For example, interviews, personal statements just overall the world of work. This program has given me lots of experience, working in retail, working in management, I can now write on my CV that I have worked as an online sales manager which sounds really fancy to me, it has also given me the opportunity to explore avenues that I didn’t even realise were available to me such as working with stopgap. I am honestly so thankful for these opportunities because I never had them at school, and they have helped me get to where I need to be.

My feelings towards thrive have grown stronger and stronger, I am so happy and confident now, I believe in myself a lot more then I used to when I was young. I have grown so much, I look back at how I was last year, and I was in a bad way. I was in a dark place and its all thanks to thrive that I have gotten myself out of that place, Cherie and Grace are so amazing and so understanding and have found the best way for me to learn, they are always available to listen, and they really understand when you are having a bad day. We at thrive are always so open with each other and we always help one another out when we need it. The support bubble is so strong, the family connection is there, there is no judgement whatsoever. I find that being a part of thrive has helped me develop and be the best version of myself, I feel safe, and I feel as though I am a part of something so much bigger than myself.

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