Chelsey’s Rock Challenge® Journey

Thinking back upon my years involved in Rock Challenge® it’s difficult to pinpoint an exact moment, or even year that I realised I’d fallen in love with the experience. Way back in 2010 I auditioned for my first ever Rock Challenge® piece at Thornton Grammar School and gained a dancing role within our production of “Nemesis”. I had been interested in dance and drama for as long as I can remember but always lacked the confidence to take part prior to this year. Through the encouragement of staff and fellow pupils I found myself enveloped in one of the most rewarding journeys of my life so far. Through the months of rehearsals, costume fittings and meetings, as a first time performer/crew member it was impossible to imagine the rushes of adrenaline and the excitement I would struggle to contain once the tour began. Even after months of being told by more experienced performers and staff it was still difficult to envisage exactly what it would feel like to be up on that stage.

There are many fond memories which I often recall when sharing my own experiences from 2010 to the present day. These range from performing for the first time at the Northern Open Final as a showcasing school in St Georges Hall (Bradford), to laughing until I can’t breathe with friends met from a range of schools from all across the UK, including Peterhead (Scotland), Ashfield Girls (Ireland) and Cockburn (England) to name a few. Rock Challenge® may be a competition but first and foremost it’s a family of children and young adults striving to better themselves and improve the lives of others through a natural high (performing and working together!). The friendships I have gained through Rock Challenge® alone make the experience more than rewarding and I can honestly say that I’ve loved every minute of it.

Through the years I have been extremely lucky to compete as a dancer, and also work alongside the lighting design team whilst attending various tours with Thornton. As of last year they made a decision to no longer compete, meaning that for the first time I applied to volunteer alongside the Rock Challenge® Crew at a variety of events across the North. Having the opportunity to give back after loving the performance days for so many years prior is one of the main things I love about my time being involved with Rock Challenge®. Not only am I able to witness stunning performances and hard work at every event by the staff and Crew and the schools competing, I’m also able to continue to build new relations, as well as gain a variety of skills which were previously inaccessible. Rock Challenge® has shaped me in to the confident and skilled individual that I am today and I’ll never be able to truly express how much it means to me in words, I can however show you some images from my time competing in Rock Challenge® which will hopefully convey everything that simple words can’t!

Chelsey

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