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Talented dancers wow crowds with poignant show

JLM Dance youngsters who took part in the schol's latets prodction, Be Bold.
JLM Dance youngsters who took part in the schol's latets prodction, Be Bold.

More than 300 people turned out to see a poignant dance show telling the story of the suffragette movement.

Talented performers from JLM Dance wowed the crowd with their unique ballroom and Latin performance called Be Bold at the Hartlepool Town Hall Theatre.

Dancers from the school, based on Cromwell Street in the town, took to the stage to perform the moving show for one night only, on Friday, July 27.

The production saw performers use the medium of ballroom dancing to tell the story of the suffragette movement.

The suffragettes were members of women’s organisations in the late 19th and early 20th centuries which advocated the right for women to vote in public elections.

The show took the audience on a journey through history to see what women fought for and where their legacy has left us today.

Those who took part in the production were aged from as young as two – right up to those in their sixties.

School founder Jemma Flounders said she was very proud of her dancers, who were praised for their efforts by the audience.

Jemma said of the performance: “It was amazing.

“The feedback we have received has been unreal.

“People have even been saying how it has been one of the best shows they have been to.

“I’m extremely proud!”

In the run-up to the show JLM students racked up hours of rehearsals, with teachers at the school working around the clock to get dance routines together to showcase the students to the best of their ability.

Ahead of the show, Jemma said the school had wanted to do something to commemorate the 100th anniversary of women winning the right to vote and help to keep the suffragette legacy alive.

The school hoped that the show would highlight gender and equality issues as well as inspiring people to be whoever they want to be without boundaries around gender race and sexuality.

Jemma added: “A lot of hard work, research and dedication was put into the show, which all came together on the night.

“People were unsure of what to expect, but after talking to people in the interval they said we had recreated the story perfectly.

“It ended up being a really emotional story and there were a lot of tears from the audience, so I think we absolutely kept their legacy alive and educated most of the audience about the movement.

“Honestly, I can’t believe how well it was received.”