“We’re proud of our relationship with EACH. It’s always magical, rewarding and heartwarming and we’ve had some great feedback” – families enjoy a workshop and special performance at DanceEast

Families being supported by a children’s hospice enjoyed a “truly magical day” after taking part in a workshop and being treated to an enchanting performance at DanceEast, in Ipswich.

The event was organised by DanceEast as part of its ongoing relationship with East Anglia’s Children’s Hospices (EACH).

Children, young people and families took part in a dance workshop and also got to watch a spellbinding dance-theatre production of The Little Match Girl, based on the classic story by Hans Christian Andersen.

“It was a wonderful day and we greatly appreciated the time, care and sensitivity the team showed,” said EACH counsellor Jayne Mann.

“They’d clearly put a lot of effort into creating a workshop that was inspired by the show and helped families prepare, given that it contained themes of grief and bereavement.

“It was very powerful and meaningful, given that these are subjects many can relate to. It gave them an understanding of what was to come.”

DanceEast has been working with EACH for the last decade, including being present at the yearly Treefest events, as well as hosting dance days and gig nights.

It celebrated its 40th anniversary in 2023 and programmed and commissioned The Little Match Girl in 2013.

It was the first performance current Artistic Director and Chief Executive Brendan Keaney OBE commissioned when he started at DanceEast.

“It was a truly magical day,” said Chrissie Meikle, Producer, Participation and Engagement.

“The families were wonderful and it was a joy to witness them getting stuck in and having so much fun.

“We’re proud of our relationship with EACH. It’s always magical, rewarding and heartwarming and we’ve had some great feedback. We’re looking forward to continuing this work in 2024.”

Among the plans for this year are a DanceEast ‘takeover day’, where families visit the studio and participate in workshops, culminating in DanceEast attending, running workshops, and performing at Treefest in June.

DanceEast is keen to hear from individuals and businesses interested in helping fund future projects with EACH. To find out more about the programme, email Chrissie.Meikle@danceeast.co.uk.

The Little Match Girl performance, and accompanying workshop, took place on Sunday, 17th December.

Notes to Editors

“EACH has made us all feel part of an extended family and, thanks to staff and fellow families, we’re not alone with problems. We always leave The Treehouse feeling positive, stronger and thankful.”

  • We care for children and young people with life-threatening conditions across Cambridgeshire, Essex, Norfolk and Suffolk, and support their families.
  • We offer families flexibility and control over where they receive their care and support, including where their child dies – at home, in hospital or at one of three hospices at Milton (Cambridge), The Nook (Norfolk) and The Treehouse (Ipswich).
  • Our family-centred approach includes specialist nursing care, symptom management support, short breaks, wellbeing activities, therapies and counselling, all meeting the individual needs of the child, young person and whole family.
  • We are recognised as leaders in our field, with a reputation for excellence and commitment to pioneering development and innovation.
  • We rely on voluntary donations for the majority of our income and this year need to raise £5.8 million from fundraising and £6.5 million in income from our shops. The year before the pandemic we received just 16% of our total income from statutory sources.
  • EACH Royal Patron –Her Royal Highness The Princess of Wales.
  • For more information about EACH, including forthcoming events and how you can help raise funds, visit each.org.ukor call our Suffolk fundraisers on 01473 917965.

Keep in touch:


For further information about this release please contact:

Matt Plummer | Media and PR Manager | 07738 328058 | Matt.Plummer@each.org.uk


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