A FORMER Sunderland College dance student has returned to the classroom.
The college welcomed back Kayleigh Fisk, 22, who is now a dancer with Fertile Ground, the North East’s first professional graduate dance company.
Kayleigh, of Carley Hill, spent five years at Sunderland College and completed her BTEC First Diploma and National Diploma in Dance, and went on to gain a BA (Hons) degree in dance at the University of Sunderland.
The gifted performer and her Fertile Ground colleagues led a contemporary dance workshop with current BTEC and foundation degree dance students at the college’s new Visual and Performing Arts facility at Bede campus. Kayleigh, who joined Fertile Ground two months ago, said: “Returning to Sunderland College felt like normality; the dance and performing arts department always have a welcoming atmosphere.
“Delivering a workshop to the students offered me the chance to show them there are opportunities for dancers in the North East and I was very pleased with how productive and hard working the students were.
“It makes me proud to have studied at such a brilliant college.”
The workshop focused on specific contemporary techniques and students took part in a range of creative tasks, culminating in group performances.
Emma Kernohan, a performing arts lecturer at the college, said: “The dance department at Sunderland College is delighted to support and engage with the new dance company and apprenticeship programme.
“This supports graduate students and gives local dancers the opportunity to extend their dance portfolio in a professional capacity.
“The company delivered an excellent workshop and fully engaged with the students, raising learners’ expectations and realising new employment opportunities in the North East region.”
Fertile Ground, made up of five young graduate dancers, has agreed a residency at the college and has also joined forces with some of the region’s leading cultural and heritage venues.