Hackney dancers showcase hip-hop, salsa and cha cha cha

Bollywood, ballroom and breakdance were some of the styles showcased by young Hackney dancers, showing the skills they sweat to perfect over the last year.

The performance at The Petchey Academy in Shacklewell Lane, Dalston, showed the culmination of the free Step into Dance programme, which was launched four years ago by the Royal Academy of Dance (RAD) and funded by The Jack Petchey Foundation, which offers grants to projects benefitting young people in London and Essex.

The foundation’s namesake, philanthropist Jack Petchey, said: ““Dance certainly helps students to develop physically - but also emotionally, as they grow in discipline, confidence and the ability to express themselves.

“The young people tell us that they get a great buzz from bringing pleasure to others through their dance skills and we are honoured to provide students across London access to this important art form.”

Over 3500 students from 150 secondary schools across 18 London boroughs have taken part in the programme which culminates in Step Live! 2011 at Sadler’s Wells theatre on July 17.