A dancer’s development never stops!

21 February 2020

Supporting our ongoing mission to support dance development in Greater Manchester, we’re delighted to launch a new Pro Class with Gemma Nixon. 

For the class, Gemma will combine her vast experience as a teacher, and as a professional dancer with companies such as Rambert, Royal Ballet and Chameleon. We catch up with Gemma in a Q&A ahead of the first class.

Q1. Hi Gemma, we’re so excited that you’re delivering our new Pro Class. What can people expect?

To sweat and work hard in an open, fun and positive environment where together we can all push and strive to be the best we can be.

Q2. In your view, why is a dancer’s professional development important?

A dancer’s development never stops. There’s never a static point at which we can say, “this is it”.  It takes on-going work, and the proceeds of that work diminish quickly when we slow down or stop. To be at the top of your game means summoning the discipline to push beyond what you think you are capable of, making new discoveries in each attempt, having an openness to the fact that there’s always more to learn, and having an absolute conviction in working to the best of your ability. That’s how the best have got to where they have.

Dance is an art form, but in a professionalised context it sits some where between being an artist and an athlete. The latter has an absolute requirement for physical discipline and rigour in training the body. It doesn’t come without the hours spent investing in refining technique, flexibility, power, endurance, stamina and mental fortitude.

It needs continual input, is an on-going process, and stops when you stop. The people who have had long careers are the ones who have invested their time in being on top of their training.


Q3. Looking back at your career, can you tell us about a class experience that stayed in your memory?

When I was working on Les Enfant Terribles with the Royal Ballet and taking ballet class with the dancers of The Royal Ballet every morning. This was my first professional engagement as a performer after becoming a mother for the first time, so feeling like a ‘fish out of water’ puts it lightly. But being surrounded by such strength, power and drive on a daily basis put the wind back in my sails. The energy was palpable and that dormant, inner fighter in me kicked into gear.

Q4. Has Chameleon’s dance style influenced you in anyway, as a dancer, as a teacher?

Anthony, Kevin and I first met as young dancers back in 2002 where we danced together in Scottish Dance Theatre, my first professional job.

This was right at the beginning of my career and we had come from very different backgrounds. Watching them both dance, improvise and create definitely had a huge impact on me and with it being at such a formative time in my career I most certainly was influenced by what they did. All those improv and contact jams at various house parties definitely formed part of the building blocks to the artist I am today.

Q5. And finally, describe the new class in three words.

Challenging, dynamic and technical.

Our new Pro Class with Gemma takes place at Chameleon Studios on Wednesday evenings from 26 February, 6:30-8:30pm.

Cost is £5 per class or £25 for the first 6-week block
(includes 1 x complimentary free session when paid in advance for the block)

Book : 0161 223 6280 | amber@companychameleon.com


Don’t miss a beat

Be part of the Chameleon family and receive our regular newsletter to keep up-to-date with our news.


"10 was such a wonderful experience - I cant wait to see more of your incredible work!" "Effortless grace, strength, humour and athleticism - a visual treat!" "We brought 65 young people to your performance tonight - every single one loved it! What an amazing show!" "This show reminded me why I dance and what I’m constantly working towards! Thank you for this experience!" "Such beauty in the small moments of this show - please don't stop doing what you’re doing"

Thank you to everyone who comes to watch us perform and for all your wonderful comments and feedback!