Students take part in an online theatre class
Razzamataz Sheffield is part of a national franchise, that has been working with children for the last twenty years. They understand that performing arts can be crucial in helping young people to make sense of the world, especially important in today’s challenging climate.
Razzamataz made the difficult decision to close all schools due to COVID-19, but not close classes or opportunities for their students. “This is a very confusing time for children and exceptionally challenging for families trying to maintain some sort of structure,” explains Helen Bell, Principal of Razzamataz Sheffield. “We get hundreds of testimonials from students and their families to say that Razzamataz is the highlight of their week, so we have thought long and hard about how we can keep our families and their communities safe and still deliver the service to children that they love.”
Since the end of the Easter holiday, Razzamataz has been online and will continue to do so until the Government gives the go-ahead to allow schools back. As well as their regular Saturday classes, there are some special additional opportunities such as their dance technique and monologue workshops. Since launching, the positive feedback from parents and students has been flooding in.
“Thank you so much for the online classes. I can’t tell you how much they’ve helped Harriet over the last few weeks,” says Angela, parent of a Junior student age 6. “She’s really enjoying getting ready for Razz on Saturday and seeing everyone! It’s kept things as normal for her as we possibly can. I’ve booked them until end of May.”
The sessions are also a great opportunity for parents to watch their child enjoying themselves. “Jess loved the virtual Razz session, she was singing and dancing all day. We also absolutely loved watching her too, it was the highlight of the whole family’s week!” said another happy parent.
Evie is one of many students who enjoys online classes with Razzamataz
As well as all the free social content, Razzamataz worked tirelessly to produce an online platform so students can access their performing arts lessons in small virtual groups. Classes start from as little as £3.75 per week and are taught by inspiring and highly experienced teachers. The classes are designed for online, meaning they are focused on technique in dance, exploring their voice in singing, and working on life skills such as public speaking in drama.
For parents, there is a pay as you go option, with no monthly commitment or direct debit so families can dip in and out depending on their circumstances. The classes are open to existing and new students.
“As well as all of our existing classes, we will be supporting our friends in the performing arts industry by hosting several masterclasses with professional performers,” adds Helen. “We often have masterclasses in our school and now it is even more important to reach out to provide opportunities for all the professional performers who are finding themselves in very difficult positions with so many shows being put on hold. We know our students find these workshops really inspiring and it’s wonderful way to bring the best of the West End musical theatre and commercial genres to our students.” These will be announced in due course.
With many years of experience, Razzamataz is utilising all of their contacts in the industry to maintain the standards for students across schools. “We need to reach out to our families and young people to protect their emotional and physical wellbeing,” adds Principal Helen. “By participating in our online classes, they can maintain their close connections with their Razzamataz family, be physically active and be challenged mentally too.”