About the Project
Museum Movers is an Arts Council England funded project encouraging movement and dance for all inspired by culture and heritage. Physical health, mental wellbeing, and engaging with our collection in new ways are at the core of this programme.
The project focuses on the collection of Epping Forest District Museum (EFDM), using the entire museum space and encouraging health and wellbeing through creative activities, dance workshops and showcases.
Following considerable consultation, the project focuses on three audience groups Little Movers (early years), Middle Movers (young adults, particularly those with SEND) and Mighty Movers (Older people).
Due to the impact of Covid-19 we’ve redesigned our project with a digital focus, and we hope this blog will provide a rich source of inspiration alongside our physical programme. Alongside the films you’ll find notes explaining how you can take part in the comfort of your own home, using everyday objects for inspiration. Please let us know how you get on and share your own films of you taking part on our social media channels.
About the Team
Rachel has been dancing since she was 3 years old and has enjoyed trying out all sorts of dance styles such as Salsa, Flamenco, Tap and Ballet. Rachel graduated Manchester Metropolitan University after completing a Creative Arts degree where she majored in Dance. She once appeared on TV dancing, dressed as a cat (who also happened to be a punk!!) Rachel’s mum was ever so proud of this moment in her daughter’s career, even though she didn’t recognise her!!
Rachel enjoys dancing with pupils in schools, young people in community classes and has loads of fun dancing with the more mature (in years!) dancers here at Epping Forest Museum, on a Friday morning. Other work she undertakes is in local schools, for Trinity Laban and for the Royal Academy of Dance.
Rachel can often be found skipping and twirling up and down the stairs at Epping Forest District Museum and through the galleries (being very careful not to knock any of the exhibits over!) The exhibitions often give her inspiration for dance moves and new ways of moving.
Dance is really special to Rachel as she enjoys the fact that it stimulates the mind and the body and is good for all round wellbeing. Rachel has made many friends through her love of dance; she is never shy of jumping up to dance when a great tune comes on at a party (or on the radio in the office!!)
Rachel has made the films featured in this bog (you can also view them on the Epping Forest District Social media) to make people smile, or think, or try out something similar for themselves. You will notice that many of the dances are not instructional, they don’t tell you what to do, they are here to give you ideas and to remind us all that choreography can be anything.
Please try out some of the dance ideas in this blog at home and then come to museum to find out more about the dancing that is going on there.
Epping Forest District Council are able to run this project due to generous funding from Arts Council England.
The first phase of the project is here online, sharing Rachel’s love of dance and choreography, demonstrating ideas you can do at home and ways to keep mind and body healthy. The second phase will be inviting groups and individuals to come to Epping Forest District Museum to try out some of the ideas in person. The museum will allow us behind the scenes access to its collections to inspire movement and we will be able to celebrate what art and dance can be together.