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5月30日号 コロナに負けず踊る スラム街のバレエ少年

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WORDS 単語をチェック

pandemic
大流行
remotely
遠隔で(後出 remote は遠隔の)
depths
奥地、どん底
face an obstacle
障害に直面する
spin
回転する
backdrop
背景
crammed
すし詰め状態の
shack
掘っ立て小屋
running water
水道
poverty
貧困
instantly
すぐに
(be) hooked
夢中になる
restriction
規制
struggle
苦心する
(be) undeterred
くじけない
seize ~
~をつかむ
branch
分校
neighborhood
地区
hand-me-down
お下がりの
via ~
~を通して
videoconferencing
テレビ会議システムのこと
soul-lifting
(ここでは)気分を高揚させるような
hardship
困難
uncertainty
不確実さ
encouragement
励み

Dancing Dreams   

The coronavirus pandemic is forcing children to stay home and learn remotely. But in the depths of Kenya's slums, 12-year-old ballet student Eugene Ochieng faces huge obstacles to remote learning: no computer, no internet access and very little space to practice.

With his ballet studio closed, he finds open spaces in Nairobi's Kibera slum, and spins and jumps in his sneakers against a backdrop of crammed metal shacks. Half a million people live in Kibera, and most have no running water. Many dream of a way to escape.

Ballet isn't just a passion. It could be a way out of poverty. Ochieng discovered the art form two years ago when teachers from nonprofit organization Artists for Africa visited his school and showed his class a few moves. He was instantly hooked.

But when the coronavirus spread in Kenya, the government closed all schools, including dance studios. Restrictions on movement have put millions of people out of work, including Ochieng's parents. They are struggling to buy food.

Ochieng is undeterred. He recently seized the chance to visit a branch of Dance Centre Kenya in the Karen neighborhood of Nairobi, where he received a donated pair of hand-me-down ballet shoes.

The school works with Artists for Africa to support talented dancers from low-income families. Classes are now being taught remotely via videoconferencing. While there, Ochieng took the rare opportunity to join a class while its artistic director watched and advised the young dancers.

For Ochieng, it was a soul-lifting experience after weeks of hardship and uncertainty. In spite of the challenges, Ochieng does all he can to keep up his training.

"My mother is my main source of encouragement," he said. "She always tells me that things will get better. … My wish is to visit my grandparents and to go back to dance school to achieve my dream of becoming a dancer." (AP)

[本文 - 312 words]

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