CHESTERFIELD: Youth groups make a song and dance at Community Arts Festival

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Celebrating the proud boast that Chesterfield’s got talent - and lots of it - young people danced up a storm and sang their hearts out at the town’s new community arts festival this afternoon (Sunday, May 6).

A free showcase in the Winding Wheel enabled the Derbyshire Youth Dance Company, which rehearses at the venue, to make their public debut in front of proud parents and supporters.

Their work included an interpretation of skydiving, complete with masks and a backpack, in a performance which was athletic and spellbinding to watch.

Next up were performance arts students from Chesterfield College who opened with a delightful dancing display to Bye Bye Blackbird before a hat-trick of songs featuring two soloists and a duo.

Seven-year-old Gunjon Paul dressed in traditional Asian costume brought the magic of her culture’s dance to the showcase in a beautiful display which was controlled, graceful and utterly charming. The performance was put on by the Asian Association which runs dance classes in Hasland on Monday evenings.

The showcase also featured a vocal performance from Inspirations Theatre Company.

Celebrations continue this evening with the final performance of a new play The Candy Girls, which is a touching insight into the lives of the workers at the old Trebor factory in Chesterfield. The performance starts at 6.30pm.

The festival ends tomorrow when attractions will include the Harthill Morris and Ladies Clog Dancing Team in the Vicar Lane amphitheatre from 11am-2.30pm; a drama mini-festival at the Pomegranate Theatre with the Pomegranate Youth Theatre, SCART (Springwell Community Arts) DCAS (Donut Creative Arts Centre), Directions Theatre Arts, Class Act and Chesterfield Theatre Company from 2pm to 4.30pm, and a concert by Judy Dunlop and performance poet Mark Gwynne Jones in the Winding Wheel ballroom at 7.30pm.

GAY BOLTON