With Dementia

A dance class holds hands in a circle as they dance

Dance for Wellbeing

With Dementia

With Jacqui Simmonds and Debora di Centa

2-3pm Fridays

30 October – 18 December 2020

$100 per person

Season theme: Going International
To music from places and cultures around the world, the tutors will lead you through dances of great variety, inspired by many societies, histories and geographies across our globe.

Carers can participate for free when attending with Companion Card holders; please advise during registration if a carer will be attending.

Belco Arts is providing the first regular dance program in the ACT for people living with dementia. Classes include a variety of different dance and movement activities that can be enjoyed while seated, standing beside a chair, or moving independently, always to fabulous music. Classes are aimed at providing a gentle workout for the brain and the body, resulting in positive emotional responses, increased mobility, elevated quality of life and opportunities for relaxation for participants and their supporters.

Scientists have discovered the many neurological benefits of dance and movement – and it has been found that dance requires significant mental coordination that activates several brain regions which can strengthen neural connections and improve memory. It provides a great workout for the brain and the body, within a supportive and welcoming social environment.


Preview a class

Not sure Dance for Wellbeing is for you? Watch a sample class below!


About the tutors

Jacqueline Simmonds

Jacqui Simmonds (BA, MFA) has been involved in dance education for over three decades, developing, directing and delivering tertiary dance degrees, and in senior management, overseeing student engagement. Jacqui’s approach to teaching dance is underpinned by a comprehensive understanding of the body in movement and of the elements of dance, and ongoing exploration of making dance accessible to everyone. She is currently working with Ausdance Victoria to develop a Creative Ageing Skill Set, teaching dance to older people. Jacqui is Artistic Coordinator for Canberra Dance Theatre and Co-Artistic Director for CDT’s GOLD Company. A qualified Iyengar yoga teacher, she also teaches at Canberra Yoga Space.

Debora di Centa

Debora di Centa is a Canberra-based independent dance artist and choreographer. Debora grew up in Italy and started dancing at a young age. She has extensive training in ballet, jazz, contemporary dance and she is an expert in Laban Movement Analysis. Debora has studied and collaborated in dance works, research and performances with various artists and dance specialists around Europe, US and Asia. She teaches, performs, choreographs, and directs dance events and, since 2016, is leading the Canberra Contact Improvisation community, as well as training pre-professional contemporary dancers at Dance Development Centre Canberra. As an independent artist, she works through her label ISEMS PROJECTS. Her motto is ‘Dance for All!’.


More info

Please contact Dance for Wellbeing Programs Officer, Philip Piggin, via email or phone (02) 6173 3300.

You can find Belco Arts’ COVIDSafe Plan here.

This class is part of the Dance for Wellbeing program, an initiative of Belco Arts. Thanks also to Musica Viva AustraliaCanberra Theatre CentreLorna Sim Photography, and Ausdance ACT .