There are 11 Centre's for Advanced Training in Dance (CAT) which are located nationally, providing intensive, part time dance training for 11-18 year olds. The CAT programmes work collaboratively to ensure students from all over the country “benefit from world-class specialist training as part of a broad and balanced education, which will enable them, if they choose, to proceed towards self-sustaining careers in music and dance." (MDS Advisory Group)
Centres for Advanced Training (CAT), are funded by the Department for Education and managed by the Music and Dance Scheme (MDS) awarding full or partial grants to young people from a variety of backgrounds. The CAT scheme was initially set up in 2004 and has grown over the years to support over 500 young people.
Centres for Advanced Training provide a vital link in this process by identifying children as young as 11 who are selected at audition for their exceptional potential and passion for dance whilst ensuring that they benefit from the highest quality prevocational training. CAT’s prime objective is to help and encourage young British dancers to access dance institutions and conservatoires to further their study and training. Unlike other specialist training programmes, the Centres for Advanced Training are non-residential and allow students to remain in mainstream education and live at home with their families.
There are a variety of strands within the 11 CAT Centres, for example The Place is a Contemporary strand and there are also Urban, Ballet, Circus and South Asian strands across the country.
The Place's Centre for Advanced Training is open to all children between 11-18 years regardless of previous dance training. We accept children who have limited dance experience alongside those who have had considerable prior training. With the generous support of the MDS we can select children purely for their potential regardless of family and financial circumstances.