My best friend and I have this tradition that every year for our birthdays’, rather than buying a physical gift, we’ll organise a trip, or something to do together. It’s such a nice idea because it means that we dedicate at least a whole day to catching up, spending quality time together and doing something different and fun.
For my birthday, which was back in May, she booked our place in the London 2016 Summer Colour Run. The whole day was just so much fun, from the face-painting getting ready, to the actual multicolored madness that was the race-course, to the unlimited free skittles at the end.
This meant that the pressure was really on this year for me to find something for us to do that would be just as exciting and memorable.
Luckily, I found out about Seen on Screen just in time – about a week or so before Chloe’s birthday. Seen on Screen Fitness are a London-based company who run classes, masterclasses and workshops based on the choreography from popular music artists. The moment that I saw the timetable, I knew that this was the perfect gift for both of us.
Without hesitation, I booked both Chloe and myself onto a one-and-a-half hour weekend Beyonce workshop.
Workout like Beyonce with Seen on Screen
Seen on Screen have a variety of studios and locations that they use across London – and they’ve also just opened in Manchester.
Our workshop took place at the central YMCA in Tottenham court road. As the largest gym in central London, this YMCA boasts four floors, a swimming pool and a huge, fully-equipped gym, as well as several studios and other facilities.
It’s a good thing our studio was so big because there were approximately 25-30 people in the class. This made for a great atmosphere, particularly at the end when we were split into smaller groups to perform the routine in front of a substantial, cheering audience. The only thing about such large classes is that there was minimal (if any) individual attention – and unless you stand right at the front it can be difficult to see the instructor and follow what’s going on.
Nonetheless, with a disco-ball and flashy lights, you could certainly get in the zone and have a truly different and exciting exercise experience.
We had no idea what to expect when we first walked in. Both of us have significant, but very varied dance experience, Chloe’s street-dance, gymnastics and contemporary upbringing being vastly different to my own ballet-background.
The workshop offered four short routines to four different Beyonce tracks, which were merged at the end to create one long routine. It was a great way to do it, as you didn’t get bored of dancing to the same song for an hour and a half and really got your money’s worth of “Beyonce Girl Boss” – which is what we’d signed up for. I’d have liked for the workshop to be a little longer – perhaps two hours – just so that we could have spent a bit more time practising and perfecting each excerpt.
The tracks that were chosen were Bow Down, Run the World (Girls), Survivor and Freedom. This offered a nicely varied routine, with the first two tracks being more upbeat and the latter being much more lyrical and slow.
The actual choreography was easily adaptable for mixed abilities and completely open to individual interpretation. Most of all, however, it was just great fun – similar to dancing around in your living room but with a tad more structure and style!
Kelechi Nwanokwu was our instructor for Sunday’s workshop, and when it finished, both Chloe and I walked out of the studio and immediately said, wow, she was amazing.
Completely chilled and funny, she didn’t seem to let anything faze her. The class was fast paced, but not rushed, and we were immediately launched into an energetic warm-up/stretch routine that got us ready and raring to go. During the choreography, each move was explained clearly and with enough detail- but the focus was very much on feeling and style, rather than precision or technique.
If anyone was embarrassed or self-conscious at the beginning of the class, this quickly disappeared with Kelechi’s carefree attitude. By the time we did the final routine, everyone’s inner-Beyonce-diva was clearly on display.
I would absolutely recommend Seen on Screen for anyone living in or visiting London. Whether you’re looking to get fit, try something new, or if you’re a dancer who feels a bit out of practice, this is a fantastic way to keep fit, develop your coordination and unleash your secret pop-artist all at the same time. With a range of classes to choose from, it’s up to you to choose between a dance class, a fitness class or a mixture of the two.
Believe it or not, it’s a bit more fun than dragging yourself out of bed on the weekend to go to body pump. After all, I know few better ways to spend a Sunday than dancing around to Beyonce with your best friend.