It’s been a busy year for the Aurora Dance Academy with girls travelling to Winnipeg for conventions and holding recitals in Thompson. This year the girls even had the chance to dance beside a choreographer from So You Think You Can Dance (SYTYCD), the television show.
At the beginning of 2015, in January the dancers traveled to the IDance convention in Winnipeg, where 17-year-old Sofia Lima, won a scholarship for a week-long intensive dance camp in Barcelona.
During the convention, which is affiliated with SYTYCD, dance instructors from Thompson had the chance to speak with Melissa Mitro from the show, who ended up coming to Thompson last month to work with the dancers. During her stay in Thompson, Mitro surprised the dancers with five extra $750 scholarships to the Barcelona camp. The five students who received the cheques are Kelsie Paulic, Hanna Lothian, Makayla Pynn, Sydney Vallance and Taylor Volanski.
Instructor Kaidie Morris says having Mitro here meant a lot to her dancers. “It was crazy for even Sofia to win the scholarship in Winnipeg, and now for other girls to have the opportunity to go to together, it was something that would have never happened if she didn’t come up here to teach. She was a positive role model for these girls.”
Lima will be heading to the August camp, but Morris says she’s unsure about the other girls, as their parents now need to look at the finances of the trip.
Lois Cormier, manager of Aurora Dance, says the dancers have worked hard all year and have done so well in the different competitions they’ve competed in. “They have worked so hard. The girls have asked us to make bedrooms upstairs so they can sleep here. They come here right after school, and leave at 9 o’clock at the earliest.”
In December at the ADAPT dance exams in Thompson, Lothian and Eva Parobec had the highest exam marks, Parobec and Amy Shier also won $100 scholarships in March at the ThunderStruck Dance Competition in Winnipeg for winning first overall in their category. At the same competition Dennita Cameron won top routine in teen future star category, and Kelsie Paulic won the special judges award.
In April the academy took part in the Candance Dance Competition in Regina and the Festival of the Arts in Thompson where instructor Ashley Genaille won most outstanding choreography.
The academy finished off the year with their “Enchanted Forest” Dance recital which took place on June 7.
Cormier noted that dance is not just dance for these dancers; it’s about everything else that comes along with the hobby. “Dance is more than just dance. It’s the discipline, it’s the relationships, it’s the drive the girls have. I always used to say paying for dance is cheaper than paying for bail. To me the more kids that dance the better. It’s keeping kids out of trouble.”
Registration for September will be open at the end of June.