When the COVID lockdown hit in South Australia, Restless Dance Theatre suspended all its regular workshops and closed its centre from Monday 23rd March.
Along with our colleagues in the Arts Sector around Australia and the world, Restless took urgent action to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
We recognise the need for everyone to contribute to the efforts to flatten the curve of the spread of this novel coronavirus by practicing social distancing and self-isolation.
We therefore closed our centre at 195 Gilles Street in Adelaide and the Restless staff for a time, as far as possible, worked from home and there were no regular workshops and no external hirers using the building.
Restless has now been able to resume its regular workshop sessions in the Meeting Room at the rear of our centre. We are reserving the use of the Studio for The Company dancers, our core group of dancers who meet twice a week for full day training. We ran a separate secure bubble for them in the Studio as they rehearsed Seeing Through Darkness and continued with their regular training.
During the lockdown, we recognised that our dancers love coming to Restless and their dancing with us can be a vital and joyful part of their existence. It was important that as a company we responded creatively to the challenges of isolation that the virus forced upon us. In this adversity more joy could be found.
We used video conferencing to conduct classes with dancers in their own homes. We started working this way with The Company dancers and this worked exceptionally well! Our regular training staff were able to lead training sessions for the six dancers with great hilarity and wonderful results. It is fabulous that the dancers were able to engage like this and that they were able to continue to extend their skills and maintain their levels of fitness.
We have a wonderful team of committed tutors who run our workshops and we continued to pay them.
Once we had worked online with our core dancers and ironed out all the bugs, we were able to extend this service to our other four regular weekly workshops. In this way we brought creative joy to all our regular dancers and to did our bit to counter the ill effects of social isolation and generated lots of smiles in these gloomy times.
Now that we have been able to return to face to face workshops, we are still running separate bubbles in the Meeting Room and the Studio to be as COVID safe as we can.