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Dance graduate, Adrienne, talks about her dancing career

Adrienne Melling is working in her dream industry as a Lead Dance Artist after studying BA (Hons) Dance Performance and Teaching at the University of Central Lancashire.

After attending what she thought would be a daunting university audition, Adrienne immediately felt comfortable in her surroundings due to the support provided by the dance course staff. This experience, accompanied by the welcoming atmosphere in the dance studios, encouraged Adrienne to make UCLan her first choice.

Adrienne was interested in the somatic practice aspects of the course and she wanted to discover how this would develop and mould her into a dance artist. Reflecting on her degree choice, Adrienne said: “Preston was the nicest campus I had explored, and the staff were the friendliest I had experienced.”

During her time at University, Adrienne was awarded a placement at Dance United Yorkshire as part of UCLan’s annual cJAM event. This was an intensive three-week placement where Adrienne worked with socially excluded young people on a project to develop their life skills.

After graduation, Adrienne was offered a part-time position as a Dance Artist for Dance United Yorkshire the company she previously interned with. In recent years, Adrienne has progressed within her role and is working as a Lead Dance Artist on the Resi / Dance project which is specific to the deprived area of Home Wood in Bradford.

In her role at Dance United Yorkshire, Adrienne has contributed to the creation of five dance companies in the Holme Wood area and she is a member of their professional performance company, Gradient. Adrienne also helps with school workshops, choreography for performances and the delivery of the Arts Award.

Alongside her part-time role, Adrienne freelances for several companies in a variety of settings. She delivers termly contracts for AJ Dance Company within primary schools, works with the Yorkshire Academy of Creative Arts and Dance and Jigsaw Dance. Also, Adrienne is a Family Centre Assistant where she assists on family support programmes.

Adrienne Melling, Dance Performance and Teaching graduate
Adrienne Melling, Dance Performance and Teaching graduate

Talking about her lasting memories of her time at University, Adrienne said: “The amazing and supportive course staff, who are so knowledgeable and inspiring. They would help at any time of day, in every way they could. The advice and skills given to me during my time on the course I will never forget, and I will never stop shouting about the course and staff at UCLan. Without the staff and the amazing friends, I met, I wouldn’t be where I am today!”

She continued: “My experiences at UCLan made me feel so much more confident in my abilities than I was before. The staff really made me feel like I can handle anything and that I am worthy of any opportunities that may arise for me.”

When asked about what advice she’d give to prospective or current students wanting to do something similar, Adrienne said: “I would recommend the UCLan Dance course to everyone and anyone. You can come in knowing little and leave feeling accomplished and refined as an artist. I’d also remind graduates and students that they are solely in charge of their achievements. You’ve got to take the opportunities when they’re there, meet everyone you can and treat every dance class like it’s your last, push yourself.”

"You’ve got to take the opportunities when they’re there, meet everyone you can and treat every dance class like it’s your last, push yourself."

Adrienne Melling, Dance Performance and Teaching graduate