Fame dancers prepare for festival circuit

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March 12, 2015 8:15 AM

The competitive dance students at Fame Dance Studios are doing one last performance before hitting the road to compete in dance festivals across Alberta.

The Fame Dance Festival Showcase is taking place on March 14 at the Vic Juba Community Theatre. After their show, the students will prepare to head off to dance festivals in Red Deer, Calgary and Vermilion. Every year, finals are held in Florida.

“It is really the go-to show for people who like different genres of dance and a higher skill level,” said Fame Dance Studios owner and director Sarah Makins. “(Last year), they won a couple of grand championships, which are really hard to do, taking the top award at a dance competition. So this show is really important just to get all the final kinks out.”

About 150 students from ages eight to 26 will be on stage in solo and group performances. There will be a wide variety of dance styles on display, including tap, jazz, ballet, hip hop, lyrical, modern and ballroom.

“It’s interesting to see the different levels and the progression from kids that have done just three years of dance to students who have done 14 or 15 years of dance,” she said.

Makins says although the students are practising for their upcoming tournaments, it’s important that they don’t focus on the competitive aspect of dance.

“We always say, ‘Just work really hard try your best,’” Makins said. “We always try to not make it about the sport of dance, it’s just, ‘Go out there be the best that you can be.’ That’s how we find the best success for sure.”

Makins says along with the choreography, music and set design, costumes are a big part of telling a story through dance.

“They’re all really high-end costumes because the students do get judged on their outfits as well,” she said. “They’re absolutely gorgeous. Any audience member would get something out of the show, whether it’s a hip-hop street look, or a really rough and tumble look, or a glam look it’s fun to watch for that.”

As well as showcasing dances that will be done in competition, the students will be performing dances from an one of their next presentations, called Out of Time.

“They’re performance pieces that show a strong message as far as what we can do to better ourselves, and therefore better the environment. So the audience will see those pieces interwoven in this show,” she said. “We don’t like to just be a dance studio that just has really great numbers showing skill, we also like messages… So that’s always a hidden thing within our performances.”

Fame Dance Festival Showcase tickets are available at the Vic Juba box office. Admission is $17, children under five get in for free.

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