World-class dance centre is opened

A NEW �8.9million dance centre has been officially opened amid a carnival atmosphere in Ipswich.

Richard Cornwell

A NEW �8.9 million dance centre has been officially opened amid a carnival atmosphere in Ipswich.

Dancers brought the town centre and waterfront to a standstill yesterday - with hundreds joining in a new dance called Let Yourself Go.

Dignitaries, including Ipswich MP Chris Mole and East of England minister Barbara Follett, danced on an open-top bus which travelled from the Cornhill to the new Jerwood DanceHouse with a colourful and noisy crowd following on behind.

The new DanceEast centre on the waterfront was a hive of activity all weekend to celebrate the opening, giving the public a chance to see its world-class facilities.

The government-funded centre on the former Cranfields Mill site comprises three dance studios, a 200-seater studio theatre, a waterfront caf�, a dance resource library, pilates and therapy suites, showers and changing rooms, creating a new cultural hub for the area.

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There were demonstrations and free taster sessions as the public got to grips with a range of dance styles with the Royal Ballet and morris dancers, hip hop to Egyptian belly dancing, musical theatre to ceilidh.