Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Dance intensive brings students young and old together for a week of holiday fun

What are you doing for yourself this season? You’ve worked hard all year. So put on your dancing shoes and have some holiday fun with the Patel Conservatory’s Winter Fantasy dance intensive.

Patel Conservatory’s Open Dance Intensive:
Winter Fantasy
Dec. 16 through Dec. 20, 2014

Winter Fantasy is a week of dance classes that culminate in a ticketed performance in the Straz Center’s Jaeb Theater.

“To see what you can actually put together in such a short period of time,” said Jacqueline Rivera, who did the open dance intensive last spring, “it was a lot of fun...I was really proud of being a part of that.”

Bianca Rivera, left, with daughter
Bianca Rivera-Irions
When Rivera signed up for the adult jazz class at the Conservatory last summer, she had never before taken a dance class.

“I wanted to be a dancer when I was young, but we just couldn’t afford it,” she said.

Her daughter Bianca, 14, had taken classes at the Conservatory for years before Rivera finally decided to try it herself. Rivera and her daughter participated together in the open dance intensive in March.

“She was so encouraging, she would practice with me at home,” said Rivera.

Rivera currently takes the adult ballet class and is looking forward to the Winter Fantasy intensive.

“I refuse to give in to the fear, or the idea that I’m too old,” said Rivera.

In the upcoming intensive, students will get their toes tapping to Pennies from Heaven, experience the dazzle of Radio City as they learn Rockette style kicks, get their jazz hands on to Let it Snow and shake their hips with a little Flamenco.

It’s a holiday celebration from around the world that will get your heart rate going and help you earn a few extra treats this season.

Led by Patel Conservatory dance faculty Susan Downey and Kelly King, the week-long program allows students to challenge their skills and learn fun choreography in a variety of dance styles.

Whether you have had former dance experience, or if you want to try something new, the intensive is geared towards adults and teens of varying skill levels.

Tuesday through Friday, you’ll learn and rehearse dance and musical theater pieces. On Saturday, you’ll be ready to perform in the Winter Fantasy showcase, a ticketed performance that will be fun for the whole family.

Dancers will need tap, jazz and character shoes, a black leotard, black tights and black jazz pants.

Open dance intensive rehearsals will be:

Tues., Dec. 16 from 5:45 to 8:45 p.m.
Wed., Dec. 17 from 6:30 to 9 p.m.
Thurs., Dec. 18 from 5:45 to 8:45 p.m.
Fri., Dec. 19 from 5:45 to 8:45 p.m.
Sat. 11:45 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.

The showcase will be on Saturday at 5:30 p.m. in the Jaeb Theater.

The tuition for the week is $250. For more information, or to register, please call 813.222.1002.

For more information about the Patel Conservatory’s open dance program, click here.

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