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Dark Room Ballet offering free training in ballet, teaching balance, orientation and more

Feb 16, 2021

Blind ballerina Krishna Washburn

Dark Room Ballet is Krishna Washburn’s specialized introductory dance curriculum for blind and visually impaired dancers. It is a toolbox course that teaches specific skills, including finding balance without sight, maintaining orientation with auditory and foot sensitivity, and self-correction with internal alignment.

Dark Room Ballet is based in both Royal Academy of Dance ballet training and Butoh and classical Japanese dance training. Krishna holds a Master’s of Education from Hunter College and special certification through the American College of Sports Medicine, and has been a movement teacher for blind and visually impaired people of all ages for many years.

Krishna Washburn started dancing as a sighted child at age three. I studied ballet with the Royal Academy of Dance. I was accepted to Barnard College at age 18 and was in a preprofessional dance track. By the end of my first year, I experienced rapid dramatic vision loss. I stopped dancing for a long time. I missed dance a lot, but I didn’t have any life skills; I didn’t know how to walk or open a door.

Krishna believes that blind and visually impaired students not only deserve to learn physical skills, but are entitled to learn them. They have a right to learn dance and movement skills from a teacher with appropriate training and empathy. They have a right to learn physical forms of artistic expression, so that they can self-actualize. Learn more.