Debut Contemporary is launching an exciting new venture with the Dance and the City, company founded by Tatiana Pechernikova and Agata Shapchanskaya . Contemporary Ball Room at DEBUT brings an elegant world of ballroom dancing inside our space. We are presenting you today an interview with Tatiana, who is a well-known figure in the dance world in Russia and has been one of the organisers of the Russian Strictly Come Dancing, annual Ballroom Dancing Kremlin Cup in Moscow and many other international dancing events. This collaboration with Dance and the City will see a program of private dance classes and dance social event “Dance in a Movie’ which will certainly inspire novice and experienced dancers. In this edition of our interview, Tatiana explains the origin and concept of dance and why dancing is an art form akin to the visual art and integral to our wellbeing.
1. Dance and the City’ is a very unique concept in London. Are events like these typical for the Russian society or you are the one who developed the idea?
No, it is a very unique concept indeed. What we realized with Agata is that there are many traditional dancing clubs in London that teach different styles and organize occasional events for the dance lovers. At the same time there are lots of events in London where people socialize and have a drink to the sounds of music…however dancing is not an essential part of those. But we are surely aware that generally there are many people a who are very attracted to the visual art, and enjoy visiting galleries and museums
And then we thought – in fact we talk about Art all the time but in the variety of its forms and dancing is one of those. This sparked the idea of the creation of Dance and the City.
We do not only bring elegance and beauty to people life through private and group dance classes but also organize events where people enjoy the art in all it’s forms i.e. art exhibitions, dance performances, classical music and the center of it – proper dance classes where people acquire a real asset to carry away from the event and use it further to shine on any dance floor of the world. And the secret is…dancing is not about the amount of steps. It’s about those steps that take your breath away. And we make sure we bring those steps it to your life.
2. Dance has an old tradition in Russia, especially ballet. How do Londoners receive an invitation to a dancing ball?
It is totally true. Dance has an old tradition in Russia. However over the past years you could see in Russia as elsewhere in the world the trend towards modern, nightclub style music vs. tangoes and foxtrots. It is very exciting to see that changing now. .
People start again being interested in the elegant and beautiful dancing and want to “touch” this world of long extravagant ball gowns and bow ties.
Hence when you now invite people to the Dance Ball you see a sparkle in their eyes and the question “Is that a real Ball?” Ballroom dancing is very often associated with a fairy tale and this is exactly what Balls bring to our life.
3. Dance in a Movie’ is one of the most exciting upcoming events in London. How are you approaching movie dances and which are the movies you are thinking about?
Each of us at least once was thinking about “becoming a movie star for a second”. “How it feels to be there on the screen, being able to perform or act so beautifully”. And we thought – why don’t we make this come true for our guests for one night?
We will project on the wall the iconic movies and learn exact steps from the dance scenes with our guests! We will become Travoltas for a night! Not bad, eh? And that will be our first class “Pulp Fiction!” And the second one let me keep in secret for the time being. But I can assure you that one is not to be missed either. Whatever you learn on March 6th can be surely used on any of the dance floors in the world!
4. You are always linking dance to other form of arts. How do you think that visual art relates to dance and how does the relationship between them impact on the public?
You are totally right. We see dance as another form of art and therefore closely related to the one. When we dance in a couple we explore the world of beauty though two of our five senses…touch and hear. When we enjoy art exhibition we explore it through another sense – sight. And we truly see the impact on the public when all of the above is combined in one activity. You significantly increase the depth of the enjoyment as you involve more senses and make this beauty journey only more colorful and diverse.
5. Dancing events held at an art gallery is a very exciting idea. How do you think that the environment will help dancers express themselves better?
It undoubtedly will. Once we involve more senses in one activity our personal creativity gets significantly boosted and brought to the new level…we discover ourselves from a truly different perspective, start seeing possibilities in the areas which we were not even aware of before. The world starts growing at pace opening up new forms and shapes of beauty and the exploration becomes more enjoyable. I know people who changed their life on the back of the dance classes. A lady from the banking industry started taking private classes and attending dance-related events; slowly it became her hobby and her passion, and in the end the corporate environment was left behind and a new page of her life was opened together with the opening of her own dance school. Now you can only see her surrounded by the students of her school whose eyes are shining and who sincerely share that without dancing the colors of life will stay around black-grey-blue tones of the business suits…
6. How do you think that different forms of art improve the quality of life and how important are they for spiritual therapy?
There is a great expression “Variety is the spice of life”. I am a real believer in that.The more doors you open the more colors you bring to your life. And similarly the more forms of art you let in the richer and multi-dimensional your life becomes. And you never know what exactly you will discover on this journey…but in the first place you will definitely discover yourself…and this is already the result, which is worth starting the journey for.