Barbara Lawlor, Nederland. Enrolling your child into a dance class does not mean you expect your son or daughter to become a professional tap dancer or ballerina or part of a touring dance cast.
It means you are giving your child the opportunity to express themselves through music, through the movement of the body in sync with the music and with each other. Getting up on the stage in front of a large audience, including your parents and siblings, can be a terrifying experience, but that fear usually disappears after the music starts and the hours of rehearsals take over the muscle memory.
It is a powerful moment when you see the hesitation fade away and confidence and joy take its place.
Last Saturday, the Mountain Movers dancers took to the Backdoor Theater Stage to perform the dances they had been working on for weeks, determined to get it right under the lights, in front of the audience. When the curtain opened on the preschoolers, the audience burst into applause. Just the sight of their costumes, their tutus and their tights, their dancing shoes and their glittering tops brought down the house.
Imagine what it is like for a five-year-old to receive cheers and whistles, applause for their performance. Being recognized for their work can be addictive and could be the impetus to work harder and learn more.
The younger children performed interpretative dances, the older children tapped out the rhythm of the songs and the kindergartners moved deftly to the “We can do the Dragon.”
Each grade level performance had its own charm, its own awesome talent. The children’s demeanor was one of glee, and of pride in themselves.
These moments on stage were immortalized in the flashes of iPhones in the audience, to be brought out years and even decades from now to remember the time when each child was a dancer, in the spotlight, on the stage.
A moment to treasure.