Skye and Victoria were nominated by their teacher, Mrs Parry, for their outstanding achievements in dance during their Gold Arts Award. Mrs Parry said:
Not only did Skye and Victoria produce an outstanding Gold Arts Award portfolio but their Unit 2 leadership project was truly inspirational. The girls were determined to create an event to raise awareness of mental health issues amongst young people. They choreographed an entire programme of dances themed around this area. They taught these dances to different dance groups within the school community. They booked the school theatre and marketed the whole event as a one-off performance – free of charge – but to raise awareness. They made contact with the local mental health charity BCAT (and were invited to their offices). They galvanised a team of volunteers to be the event’s front of house team, with stewards in charge of an exit collection. This free of charge event was so inspirational and touched such a chord with the sold-out theatre audience that the exit collection, plus donations to their specially set-up Just Giving page, meant that Skye and Victoria ultimately made nearly £1000 for BCAT. An extraordinary achievement for two young students!
In what ways would you say your Arts Award has influenced your artistic achievement, creativity, leadership or progress?
SKYE: In completing Gold Arts Award I have gained significant confidence, particularly in my leadership skills. In pulling off a high-quality charity dance show, with personal choreography, and raising a significant amount for our chosen charity I felt a new sense of pride and confidence that I will carry with me in my future endeavours.
VICTORIA: Gold Arts Award has influenced my outlook and outcome with all these aspects. I now confidently strive to reach new artistic goals through my own passion for the arts. It is not just dance that influenced my creativity but expression through art, music and photography – which I explored through Trinity’s desire of delving into all genres. These elements combined are what truly sparks my creativity, as well as working alongside motivated and ambitious people, who naturally inspired me through the gratifying process of Unit 2.
How has participating in an Arts Award impacted your artistic skills or career development?
SKYE: In completing my work experience, I felt the self-satisfaction that can be gained from working and influencing young children, particularly. Watching them express themselves through dance. This allowed me to develop my communication and leadership. I also had the chance to develop my choreography skills in a new and innovative way, this has developed my creativity further and allowed me to put my skills into practise.
VICTORIA: Through Gold Arts Award, I was able to step outside my comfort zone and try different forms of dance. This, in turn, enabled me to develop skills outside of what I already knew, as well as assuredly showcasing them. I feel this impacted both my artistic skills as I was encouraged to learn something new. Through this process, I unintentionally inspired the other dancers I was working with in order to create ‘Emotion in Motion’, which became a feeling during the Leadership Unit I appreciated the most. For example, within the show, the incorporation of symbolic props and powder paint became essential in being able to express the devastation, truth and reality of mental health. This impacted my careers development as I soon realised everything must serve a purpose and I must do something because of my own enjoyment in the matter too.
What’s next for you?
SKYE: I have applied to university to study History of Art with Cultural Studies. Whilst studying I would like to take part in as many performing arts societies as possible to maintain all I have learnt and enjoy.
VICTORIA: I have now applied for Theatre and Performance Studies at a few Universities following my qualification. I seek to learn more and obtain new skills in a different art form, however, I will continue to dance as much as possible in any free moment.
What are your career aims?
SKYE: I have not decided what I would like to do beyond university. I hope to find something I enjoy doing and see where that takes me.
VICTORIA: At the moment I’m not quite sure! However, I aim to be happy and successful in my career. I want to work with other creative people that inspire me every day and will remind me of the beauty of the arts.
Have you got any advice, Skye and Victoria, for other young people working towards an Arts Award?
SKYE: My advice to anyone taking part in Arts Award, in particular Gold, would be to firstly, keep on top of your documentation. Secondly, I would advise that you choose projects that you are greatly influenced and inspired by as it will motivate you and you will get more from the experience.
VICTORIA: I would encourage them all to enjoy the creative process – no young person would be taking the qualification or working towards Trinity College without love for the arts. Take the challenges positively and use them to explore further into art forms or work on self-confidence and expression.