Juliet Ugwoeje is a quintessential dance specialist and the CEO of Ultrabest Dance School who specializes in teaching children the art of Ballet dance. In this interview with Classic International Magazine, the graduate of Linguistics and Language who learnt Ballet at Cuban Methodology of Ballet, Dirk Badenhorst, South Africa in 2019 disclosed why children should be allowed to master the art of dance at early age in life amongst other sundry issues. Enjoy the excerpt…
Can you tell me about Ultrabest Dance School?
Ultrabest Dance School is a place where we do professional Ballet training, we build self-esteem, poise, self-discipline, mind development, stamina, flexibility, sociability, moral standards and we also make our students to learn how to catch their fun while dancing.
What is the inspiration behind Ultrabest?
Im inspired by the fact that I want to help kids discover themselves through the art of dancing Ballet, I love to see kids do exploits.
Also, to help children build their self-esteem, poise, self-discipline, mind development, stamina, flexibility, moral standards and sociability.
I want them to stand out wherever they find themselves.
I also noticed the one hour allocated for it in schools as Extra Curriculum wasn’t enough, I noticed the kids were not getting enough, and they love what they are doing also passionate about it, that also inspired me to start Ultrabest Dance School, so I could have ample time to take them through the art in a proper form.
Who is eligible to enroll?
Ballet starts at age 2. So, any child from the age of 2 and above is eligible to enroll in Ultrabest Dance School.
What is the future of ballet in Nigeria and what are the challenges?
A lot of parents ask such question, and when I try to let them see reasons why it is important their kids learn the art, they still have mixed feelings, but I thank God parents are beginning to see reasons why their kids/wards must learn ballet.
Another challenge is that of Comparison.
Some parents want magic, they want their kids to start dancing like Swanlake’ in the space of 2 (two) weeks forgetting that it is step by step. Rome wasn’t built in a day.
The foundation of ballet is very important, when the child misses that, it will be difficult to get the child dance in the right posture.
Are you fulfilled as a dance instructor?
Yes, I am fulfilled as a dance teacher.
What do you think need to be done to better the industry?
Corporation! We need to come together and agree on same thing as dance teachers. I believe in UNITY! United we stand, divided we fall.
Thank God for the Association of Ballet Teachers of Nigeria founded by Esther Oladipupo.
She is really trying her best to see that ballet comes to the limelight in our nation, Nigeria. Though we still have handful of people that are still in doubt with her vision.
Another is, we need one curriculum as dance teachers to run with, by so doing, the people especially our parents will know that we have one vision and one purpose.
Who needs dance and what is the importance of dance?
Everyone needs dance! The young needs dance, just as the old needs dance too. There are so many reasons why dancing is good for everyone.
Firstly, its a great way to exercise and stay fit. Dance is also a great way to stay in shape.
Dancing is all about moving your body and moving your body is a great way to burn calories.
Thirdly, dance can effectively promote good health by improving cardiovascular fitness, strengthening the muscles, increasing circulation, decreasing blood pressure, lowering the risk of coronary heart disease, reducing stress, and many other positive benefits.
Dance builds confidence by giving you a sense of success and achievement when you master it.
It is great for improving control over your body, timing and coordination skills. You will learn how to move with grace and poise.
The reasons are countless
Are there challenges in convincing parents to allow their children engage in dance class even at tender age?
Dancing can be a way to stay fit for people of all ages, shapes and sizes, having a wide range of physical, and mental benefits including improved condition of the heart and lungs, increased muscular strength, endurance and motor fitness, increased aerobic fitness, improved muscle tone and strength, weight management.
Who is a good dancer?
No much challenge, just that sometimes they want to compare the cost with that of the one in their children’s schools saying the difference is much.
Forgetting there is a whole lot of difference, we spend ample time to make sure they become their very BEST, we don’t just teach dance but help build their self-esteem, self-confidence, body coordination, dance and social etiquettes and whatnot.
A good dancer is simply one that is motivated and determined to always get better.
He/ she is focus. He/she is discipline, discipline in the sense that he/she practices every day to make sure he/she becomes the BEST.
Another is enthusiasm; he/she is always excited to dance.