The importance of the arts – both regionally and remotely

The below is a guest blog by Dominic, a QFCC Youth Champion

The arts play an important part in our lives. From music, to dance, to acting, and everything in between. It is a natural way to express ourselves and find our inner creativity.

During the current situation, the arts community has banded together in unity. It has always been a resilient industry – however, the pandemic has tightened this closeness. The significance of arts has never been so critical to our everyday lives. From listening to our favourite tunes, participating in an online barre class or watching a musician perform their craft, most of us have turned to some form of art-related endeavour to occupy ourselves whilst inside. All these activities have helped to ease the pain of self-isolating.

Regional areas have highlighted this resilience. Whenever a challenge comes their way – be it a natural disaster or a global pandemic, they lean on each other and pull through stronger than before. During some of our worst cyclones I’ve seen neighbours (in Mackay) band together to help clear trees, share food and lend a hand.

For myself, I’ve been connecting with my dance peers through online ballet classes. I must admit – it has been challenging. Trying to perform a pirouette in a small carpeted room, constantly hitting the fan and banging into my desk, whilst trying to follow my teacher on the screen. All whilst missing the interaction with my fellow dancers and the support we provide each other when dancing in-person. However, the joy of moving your body and creating expression through movement is inexplicable. It cuts through these challenges.

Dance communities across Queensland have risen to the challenges presented by COVID-19. Tasked with moving all classes online, postponing exams and re-planning for competitions, it is no small feat. The challenges have been accentuated – it is not easy to run dance classes online in general, let alone during these times! Students and parents have come together to celebrate the little wins – like being able to show their friends their pets during dance class. From garages, to bedrooms, to kitchens, to balconies. If there’s space, it’s possible!

Rural and remote places have benefitted from technology to access more opportunities. Professional organisations and companies have responded quickly to the situation to reach new communities. For example, Queensland Ballet’s online dance classes that have been uploaded to their website and Queensland Youth Week emphasises the importance of youth in the arts, particularly with their artwork competition. People are also able to tune into musicals, watch a live online comedy or listen to your favourite artist. This has all been possible due to the arts sector.

The arts have connected us as one.

So, make sure you support your local artists, musicians and dancers – just by following their journey or connecting with them online.

Who knows, maybe you might just be inspired to learn an instrument or start dancing?

The arts play an important part in our lives. From music, to dance, to acting, and everything in between. It is a natural way to express ourselves and find our inner creativity.