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PRESS RELEASE: Young people from the UK's largest inclusive dance programme to Step Around Town this spring

Jan McNulty

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Young dancers to Step Around Town this Spring

Step Around Town is an annual dance event for young people around London & Essex to experience the joy of dance



Photo credit: Marble and Sky.



  • Young people from across the London boroughs will participate in Step Around Town, a Step into Dance event created by Royal Academy of Dance (RAD) in partnership with Jack Petchey Foundation, which is celebrating its 25th anniversary
  • From 16 April – 9 May, Step Around Town 2024 will be a series of uplifting and energetic evenings of dance suitable for everyone
  • Events are based in London boroughs: Wandsworth, Barnet, Croydon, Newham, Southwark and Bexley
  • Step Around Town is one of a number of events organised by Step into Dance, a programme enabling young people from across London and Essex to discover their potential through the inspiration and discipline of dance.


From 16 April – 9 May 2024, young people from across six London boroughs will participate in Step Around Town. Step Around Town is a series of energetic and uplifting performances for young people from London and Essex to come together and experience the joy of dance, created by Royal Academy of Dance (RAD) in partnership with Jack Petchey Foundation. Performances will be taking place at schools and colleges in Wandsworth, Barnet, Croydon, Newham, Southwark and Bexley.


The Step Around Town performances – happening from 16 April until 9 May – are a chance to see the array of work from schools and youth organisations on the Step into Dance programme, as well as appearances by Step into Dance’s youth company, SYNC. The shows offer the chance for young people on the Step into Dance programme to come together with their peers and showcase the different dance styles they’ve learnt in front of friends, families and their local community.


For the first time the programme will include relaxed performances for SEND groups at the RAD’s HQ in Wandsworth. Inclusivity is at the heart of all Step into Dance events and these sharings have been specifically curated to cater to students with additional needs.


Step Around Town is one of the many events created by the Royal Academy of Dance’s Step into Dance programme, which is one of the UK’s largest inclusive secondary school programmes run in partnership with the Jack Petchey Foundation. Other Step into Dance events include Step into Dance’s Battle and Step Live, which provide further opportunities for young people to come together and dance.


Speaking of the programme Tim Arthur Chief Executive of the RAD says: “Step Around Town is a brilliant series of events where young dancers from our Step into Dance programme share the wonders of dance. These events are highly anticipated by friends, families and the local communities, and really showcase the positive impact dance has on young people’s social skills and confidence.”


Gemma Juma, Chief Executive Officer of the Jack Petchey Foundation, said: “The Step Around Town events are an opportunity for the local community to come together and celebrate young dancers. The talent and creativity on show is always exceptional, and their enthusiasm brings with it a joyful atmosphere. It’s a great showcase of what these young people can achieve with hard work and dedication.”


Step into Dance, a Royal Academy of Dance programme in partnership with the Jack Petchey Foundation, enables young people to develop their passion, skills and understanding of dance. Working with mainstream and SEND schools across London and Essex, Step into Dance reaches around 3,000 students annually through a diverse and inclusive programme of weekly classes, workshops and performance opportunities, aiming to reach those that might not otherwise connect with dance.




Performances take place across London boroughs from 16 April – 9 May. Tickets are free although donations will be accepted on the door: https://www.royalacademyofdance.org/dance-with-us/step-into-dance/events/step-around-town-2024/   


To learn more about Step into Dance programme visit: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4t_lH8mVC74


If you’d like to be part of the Step into Dance programme visit: https://www.royalacademyofdance.org/dance-with-us/step-into-dance/schools/



Notes to Editors


Step into Dance

Delivered by professional dance practitioners and artists, Step into Dance supports the general wellbeing and healthy development of young people, and enables them to develop knowledge, techniques, and experiences in dance, as well as acquiring personal skills that transfer to being successful in whatever their future lives may hold.


The main objective of the Step into Dance programme continues to be to reach as many young people as possible in the London and Essex regions through regular dance sessions in schools, creating opportunities for youth to connect to dance, and reaching young people that might not otherwise have this possibility.


Step into Dance is a Royal Academy of Dance programme in partnership with the Jack Petchey Foundation




Royal Academy of Dance

Royal Academy of Dance (RAD) is one of the most influential dance education and training organisations in the world with a strong global membership in 85 countries.


Established in 1920 to improve standards and re-invigorate dance training, the Academy helps and encourages its teachers to perfect their teaching skills and pass on this knowledge to their students. There are currently over 1,000 students in full-time or part-time teacher training programmes with the Academy and each year the examination syllabus is taught to thousands of young people worldwide, with around a quarter of a million pupils per year going on to take RAD exams.



Jack Petchey Foundation

Established in 1999, The Jack Petchey Foundation gives grants to programmes and projects that benefit young people aged 11-25, focusing on London and Essex. The Foundation exists to raise the aspirations of young people, to help them take advantage of opportunities and play a full part in society. Since it has been established, the Foundation has awarded grants totalling over £170 million. In 2024 the Foundation is celebrating its 25th anniversary with a series of events.


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