Dance shines in the annual fall show

GRACEFUL+AND+BALANCED%3A+The+Silver+Stars+Hip+Hop+Company+performs+their+number+while+striking+a+pose.+The+show+was+free+but+the+dance+department+asked+for+donations+to+help+the+organization.+

Photo by: Brianna Lopez

GRACEFUL AND BALANCED: The Silver Stars Hip Hop Company performs their number while striking a pose. The show was free but the dance department asked for donations to help the organization.

Anna Holme, Dispatch Reporter

Silver Stars and the fine arts department create a performance involving new techniques

The Fall Dance Showcase was comprised of two shows, in which every dance class and team at Bowie showcased dances that they had been working on. 

The dance teachers that put this show together are Leanne Bilnoski Emily Davis, and Catherine McCallum. The dancers all started working on preparing for the show in October. During this time, the directors worked on the behind-the-scenes preparation.

“We prepare for the show weeks in advance through each individual dance class,” Bilnoski said. “The show can be a lot of tedious work to create but in the end it is so worth it.”

Among the 360 dancers in the dance department, there is a wide variety of dance experience, types, and styles that can be seen throughout the showcase. Due to this diversity, the dance department is open to everyone.

“From dance levels one to four, Musical Theater Dance, Pre-Drill, JV Star Dancers Dance Team and the award-winning Silver Stars Dance Team, there is a place for every student to dance at Bowie,” Bilnoski said.

Silver Star captain senior Jade Fattouh has been dancing since she was three and this is her third year in Silver Stars.

“I love performing in the fall showcase because it showcases our dances before we take them to the competition,” Fattouh said. “This show is really good practice for our competition season.”

Along with Silver Stars, Dance Two is another class that performs in the show. This dance class prepares for the show months in advance.

“The most difficult aspect of the show in terms of preparation relates to the stressful hours before the show, when all you can think about is going over the dance in your head to make sure you remember it all,” sophomore Mia Brelsford said. “My nerves set in right before I go onto the stage, so I always make sure I have the dance ingrained in my mind and muscle memory so all I have to focus on is keeping a smile on my face, which doesn’t take much effort when all my teammates and I are having a fantastic time on stage.”

Besides traditional dance, the showcase also involves Musical Theatre Dance, a type of class that mixes aspects of theatre with that of dancing.

“Musical theatre dance is different from ‘conventional dancing’ because it is driven to aim to the entertainment of the audience through displaying passion to a subject while being collaborative within a community, instead of focusing mainly on the individual growth within technique,” junior Tayah Savoy said.

Along with being dance aide, Savoy is also a student in the Dance Four class. There are many differences in her preparations for the showcase between these classes, namely that dance four choreographs their own dance.

“I work with my kiddos I’m teaching [in Musical Theatre Dance] to make sure their routine is clean and together and everyone has motivation and intention behind their movements,” Savoy said. “With Dance Four we work as a collaborative class to choreograph a piece and then work with our teacher to make sure it’s polished. The best part about being in both classes [dance four and musical theatre dance] is experiencing the diversity within the word of various dance styles.”

In Dance Four, like other dance classes, the students experience styles like jazz, ballet, hip-hop, modern, tap and contemporary dance. Sophomore Keira Folkers is also a Dance Four student like Savoy, and is also a Silver Star.

“The most stressful part of the preparation is placing it on the stage,” Folkers said. “Because it’s different from when you’re doing it in the dance studio, there’s a lot more space in there, but on the stage it’s a lot smaller, so you have to change a lot of things and you have to remember all those changes that you’re given.”

Regardless of the difficulties that may occur, dancers can learn and gain from them as whole.

“As the music was fading and we held our pose, I looked out into the audience and saw my dad with the biggest smile on his face,” Brelsford said. “Even if I make a mistake, I know it is not a big deal because I am able to learn from them and honestly I am able to grow as a dancer from my mistakes. It’s the happiness and joy that dance brings not only to myself but to others that keeps me dancing.”

As a whole, when the show comes together, Bilnoski finds it extremely rewarding to see a product that she, Davis, and McCallum worked to cultivate.

“My favorite part of the Fall Dance Showcase is watching all of the dancers perform as a whole,” Bilnoski said. “We start working on this showcase around October so it is so nice to see all of their hard work pay off. When you get to see the reaction of their supporters it is just so rewarding.”