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Dance pupils visit Tunbridge Wells to see The Guardian of the Forest

Thursday 29th September saw a group of Bethany Dance pupils visit the Trinity Theatre, Tunbridge Wells, to see a dance adaptation of Beauty and the Beast – The Guardian of the Forest.

I thought the performance was very insightful, and gave the message that the beauty of a person should be determined by how they are inside rather than their outward appearance, challenging modern standards of image regularly presented in the media today.

Some of the characters included ‘Beauty,’ known as Aille, the Beast (Guardian of the Forest), The Flower Maidens, Woodland Animals and The Green Lady.

I really appreciated how emotive the movements and facial expressions were throughout the performance. My favourite phase was when a character called Pan, played by former contortionist and aerialist Raye Piper, performed a duet on a rotating circular frame with Aille. I really enjoyed how they made use of the space and remained in role while performing intriguing and impressive movements.

The set and costumes enhanced the performance and made it a lot more interesting from an audience perspective. I especially liked the colourful costumes of The Flower Maidens and how they incorporated their skirts within their movement.

At the end of the performance we were able to ask questions to the company. I asked who the choreographer was and learnt that it was mainly Raye Piper (Pan) and Paul Chantry but the dancers were able to also contribute to their own parts. Other Bethany pupils confidently asked questions about set and costume and we were also able to take a photo with the dancers.

Here is the website for the company to catch a glimpse of this spectacular performance:

We very much look forward to our workshop next term with the company choreographer, Paul Chantry, where we will learn The Citizens’ repertoire and characterisation of the Woodland Animals.

Written by Lucy W
Y10 dancer

“I loved all of the expressions on the dancers’ faces as it made the performance even better. The costumes were so colourful and interesting. The art work involved in the make-up was incredible. “
Anna Y11

“I really liked the physical contact used, the synchronized movements and how they looked at each other.”
Claudia DJ Y11

“ I enjoyed the part where the mob were planning to fight the Beast because their movements were so sharp and they were all in unison.”
Claudia RC Y11

“I enjoyed watching The Rose dancing on pointe as she had exceptional technique. All of the dancers’ physical skills were impressive as they demonstrated amazing strength and flexibility when performing. It was a cleverly made piece.”
Ella Y11dance33