Jive4All turns one year old this month. To celebrate this momentous occasion, we’re having a UV party and everyone is invited!
A small group of friends in the Cambridge Modern Jive scene had a dream, and one year on we’re ecstatic that Jive4All is a reality! We always felt that in this part of the world, the Modern Jive scene is very gendered, with men expected to lead and women follow, and non-binary people being left out of consideration altogether. If you are LGBTQ+ and/or want the freedom to decide for yourself whether to lead or follow, this is really offputting – lots of other dance scenes have degendering movements, so we wanted to do our bit to make Modern Jive more inclusive. Thus Jive4All was born and Modern Jive now has a degendered home in Cambridge!
Jive4All is inclusive by name and by nature. As our head of dance Radley Edwards says, “…dance is a wonderful gift. A gift I feel very strongly should be accessible to all regardless of your gender, age, height, sexuality, race or preference to put the jam or cream first on your scone!”
At Jive4All, all mention of gender has been removed from dance roles and the names of dance moves. Its up to every individual to decide if they will lead, follow, or both. In fact, we actively encourage trying the role you are less familiar with – it’s fun, and makes you a better dancer!
Jive4All is especially welcoming to new dancers, with more experienced dancers making efforts to get to know and to dance with new people. Everyone is welcome to join a pub social after each class night.
We encourage people to go to dance weekenders, help support us on busks – and recently we’ve started running a regular joint freestyle with another local dance club, ‘Illumination plus Jive4All’ in the beautiful Storey’s Field Centre.
We don’t think we fixed it for everyone yet though: we still have work to do on being more inclusive to those with disabilities, both visible and invisible. We plan to consult with disability groups and welcome suggestions from people with disabilities who would like to dance on how to better include them.
As Treasurer Becky says: “Through dancing I’ve made so many friends and I’ve found a community where I feel I belong. Dancing is just so joyful, plus it’s exercise without realising you’re doing exercise – the best kind!”
We’re proud of how far we have come in the last year, and look hopefully forward towards many more years to come. If you love our message and want to get involved, we need you! Jive4All is a not-for-profit run by a committee of volunteers, with many more volunteers making up the full team without whom we couldn’t exist. We’d love more people to be involved, please get in touch through our Facebook page, Instagram account or email us on firstname.lastname@example.org.
In celebration of our first birthday, we’re holding a UV party on 11th November at Chesterton Community College in the atrium. This will kick off at 7.15pm with a fun class suitable for all levels and then an extended freestyle with UV lights, so wear bright white or neon coloured clothing and/or facepaint to glow!
Blog post written by Jive4All’s Marketing and Advertising Officer Claire McGuinness and Chair Ian Manning.
If you’d like to write a blog post for us, please get in touch at email@example.com.