There are several things I really enjoy about studying at Trinity Laban. Sometimes you get to the enjoyment very quickly, other times you need to work hard before you get it. What I find really valuable is the opportunity to work and explore different aspects of dance or different ways of looking at it: by working with your peers, taking part in research or working with Masters students. It really broadens your view on dance and performance, but also makes you explore where you are at and where you want to go with dance.
Other than that, studying at Trinity Laban gives you the opportunity to become an independent learner and artist. This takes a deeper effort, as you will have to deconstruct and reconstruct yourself many times and in different ways: leave aside some beliefs and move on to others; lose your confidence and build a new and stronger one; work through physical and mental exhaustion. That is daunting, but I can assure you you will develop a rooted identity, both artistic and personal, which is vital to survive in this field.
Studying at Trinity Laban is really challenging. You are not only asked to have a good technique, which is really important (and perhaps we should do even more here), but you need to develop high performative skills and question your practice daily; your work as an artist, as a mover and as a performer. You need to be able to articulate thoughts, emotions and experiences; to justify clearly and fully your choices as a dancer and as a choreographer. Sometimes you don't even know who you are any more or where you are going! But I promise it all comes together eventually, and you realise you took a step further in your practice.
CoLab is a collaboration not only with the musicians from Trinity Laban, but also an opportunity to collaborate with your peers in a bigger project, even though you are not the leader of it. It makes you take responsibility for the outcome and makes you share ideas and opinions while remaining humble and collaborative. It also gives you a lot of insights into how musicians perceive music and work with it, which is really helpful for us as dancers.
Being at Trinity Laban not only enhances your studies but it makes you discover new places and cultures: I just came back from a trip to Norway where I have been hosted by a girl I met through Trinity Laban. Having the opportunity to meet people from all over the world really gives you the opportunity to see what other possibilities of making dance are out there, and especially how dance is perceived in other countries and which directions it takes. It shows you new approaches and helps to make life choices. For example, I am thinking of moving to Brussels after my graduation as I got to know from another international student that there is a lot going on there in terms of dance theatre and physical theatre (which is what I am interested in).
In a sentence: studying at Trinity Laban made me believe in my work. I point this out because I firmly believe that to be a dancer in the professional world – more than pretty feet, high legs and bendy backs – you need human skills in order to make your way through. You need to trust what you do, or the fear of failing will overwhelm you.