Dancers go online with their moves

November 25, 2022

Rochelle Waters and Joel Forman are part of Move, a programme run by Christchurch-based dance company Jolt.

Rochelle and Joel teach regular classes and workshops and are the presenters of Jolt’s Zoom sessions on IHC Media at 11am on Wednesdays.

Rochelle has been with Jolt for 16 years. “Dance is my passion,” she says. “I love music and I love to dance.” Rochelle has the special knack of getting some of the noisier kids they teach to be quiet and focus. “I just count down – 5, 4, 3, 2, 1 and get their attention.”

Joel teaches a range of students through Move and adapts the way he teaches to his classes. He gets a lot of satisfaction from teaching.

“It’s fantastic seeing people learning to express themselves in their own way,” he says. Joel is also developing his first work as a choreographer. The work will be called Whakapapa and is about him researching his Māori birth family and discovering his whakapapa.

“The training needs to be ongoing and there’s a huge amount of expectation,” says Lyn. “I’m not going to put anyone in a leadership position if they aren’t ready to show what they’re capable of.”

She admits that sometimes they [Lyn and Renee] are tough.

“We’re always making decisions about who we need to be soft with and who we need to push. A few weeks ago, some of them did a really rubbish job and we were like, ‘That’s not OK. We’re paid for these classes, so you better get your act together’. But they keep wanting to come back, so I can’t be that bad.” She laughs.

Rochelle is one who will keep coming back. “Teaching is important,” she says, suddenly very serious, “because a lot of people in the world don’t know that people with [intellectual] disabilities can teach and it’s important I show them.”

Jolt travelled with a Chamber Music New Zealand tour across the country in November with members of the Christchurch Symphony Orchestra to perform Max Richter’s The New Four Seasons. They performed in Wellington, New Plymouth, Hastings, Christchurch, Dunedin and Invercargill.

Caption 1: Dancers and teachers Rochelle Waters and Joel Forman.


This story was published in Strong Voices. The magazine is posted free to all IHC members. Read the full issue of Strong Voices or view more articles.